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Offer: Grant: Astraea Lesbian Writers Fund

The Astraea Lesbian Foundation for Justice works for social, racial and economic justice in the U.S. and internationally. Our grantmaking and philanthropic advocacy programs help lesbians and allied communities challenge oppression and claim their human rights. Underlying Astraea’s mission is an enduring commitment to feminism, progressive social change and an end to all forms of exploitation and discrimination. The Foundation supports programs that strive to eliminate oppression based on race, age, sex, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, economic exploitation, physical and mental ability, anti-Semitism, colonialism, imperialism, and other such factors. Astraea is dedicated to the belief that only through action can we build a world of peace and justice for lesbians, and for society as a whole.

The Astraea’s Lesbian Writers Fund was established in 1990 with the generous support of its founding donor, Joan Drury. The purpose of the fund is to support the work of emerging lesbian writers, and to acknowledge the contributions of established lesbian writers to our movement and culture.

First place awardees, two runners-up and three Honorable Mentions in the poetry and fiction categories will receive cash awards ($10,000 for awardees; $1,500 for runners-up, $100 for Honorable Mentions). Thanks to Skip’s Sappho Fund, at least one grant will be awarded to a lesbian writer who is based west of the Mississippi

DUE DATE: Applications Must Be Uploaded by 6pm ET on Tuesday, March 22, 2011


To be eligible for an award from the Lesbian Writers Fund, you must satisfy all of the following:

You are a lesbian-identified writer of poetry and/or fiction
Your submission is a poetry or fiction sample in English (non-fiction, screenplays, or plays are not eligible)
Your submitted work includes some lesbian content (e.g. lesbian desire, identity, and/or perspective)
You have published at least one piece of your writing (in any genre) in a newspaper, magazine, journal, anthology, or professional web publication (not including a personal or self-produced homepage).
You have not published more than one book, including a chapbook, in any subject or genre with a publisher. If a second book has been accepted by a publisher, but has not been published yet, you are not eligible to apply. Self-published books or anthologies you have edited do not count towards the one-book maximum.
If awarded, you agree to be acknowledged publicly as a lesbian writer and agree to have your work publicized as Astraea sees fit. This may include an announcement or profile in our website and newsletter.
All previous finalists, except for first place winners, are eligible to apply. Past judges are not eligible to apply.
You reside in the United States or U.S. Territories.
Current staff and Board members of the Astraea Foundation are ineligible to apply.

Previous LWF awardees and past/current LWF judges. Individuals who have received LWF Honorable Mention or who were Runners Up may re-apply.

We are pleased to introduce an online application form this year! We strongly encourage you to use the online form. If you need to mail in your application, scroll to the bottom of the page for instructions. To submit your online application, please review the list of required application materials below. Once you have the items ready, please return to this web page to fill out the online application and upload the requested documents. Please note that you will be given a unique application ID# when you proceed with “click here to apply for a grant online”. You will need to keep the application page open to view and copy your ID number into your bio, writing sample and project sample (optional for fiction applicants) before uploading it.

The following must be included with your application:

Fiction Submissions

Select up to 20 pages from a novel or a collection of short stories that you wish the judges to read. While there is no minimum page limit, we recommend that you submit at least 10 pages, so that the judges gain a deeper understanding of your work.
Your submission must include some lesbian content (lesbian desire, identity and/or perspective). If you are submitting more than one story, it is not necessary that each piece include lesbian content.
Manuscripts must be typed on 8 1/2" x 11" paper, double spaced, font no greater than 12-point, and have one inch margins. All pages must be sequentially numbered at the bottom of each page. Submissions must be in English.
Books, magazines, scanned copies/photocopies of books or magazines will NOT be reviewed.
Project Outline: This is an OPTIONAL addition for fiction writers. You may submit a project outline of up to 250 words that describes your selection in the context of the larger work.

Poetry Submissions

Select at least 10 and no more than 15 pages of poetry that you wish the panel to read. You may include as many poems as you like, but no less than two poems.
Your submission must include some lesbian content (lesbian desire, identity and/or perspective). It is not necessary that each poem include lesbian content.
Manuscripts must be written on a 8 1/2" x 11" document, single-spaced, font no greater than 12-point, and have one inch margins. All pages must be sequentially numbered at the bottom of each page. Submissions must be in English.
Books, magazines, scanned copies/photocopies of books or magazines will NOT be reviewed.


Anonymous Biographical Statement: The statement should describe your writing accomplishments and future goals as a writer, and may also include listings of your published articles, a published book, your website, or organizational, academic, or artistic affiliation. Do not include your name or contact information in the bio (including your website link). Please do not include any information that would identify you, eg: if your website is or includes your name. While personal information is appreciated, we recommend that your bio be mostly about your work as a writer. Please note that if you receive an award, Astraea may use this bio in our publicity materials, including our website and our newsletter.
A debit/credit card to make a payment of $5 payable to the Astraea Foundation.

Once you have assembled your files, click the button below to apply online.

Application Due Date: March 22, 2011

All applications must be complete and received in the office on or before March 22, 2011. Applicants who submit their proposal using our online form will receive an e-mail confirmation once they have completed the online payment. Please do not call the office to confirm that we have received your application. We receive hundreds of applications and are not able to notify applicants of receipt or the status of their application.

Selection Process

All applications will be reviewed by a panel of lesbian writers who will remain anonymous until after the process has been completed. Each year a new set of judges reviews applications. An independent team of two judges in each genre selects the winners unanimously. The names of applicants will not be known to the judges until the decisions are made and all applicants have been notified. Manuscripts are reviewed by judges considering the quality of the writing and the applicant’s potential growth as a writer.

Announcement of Awards

The selection process is expected to be completed by July 2011. All applicants will be notified of the results by July 31st 2011. Please do not call the office.

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