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Storytelling for Grantseekers: A Guide to Creative Nonprofit Fundraising Paperback – January 20, 2009


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Storytelling for Grantseekers: A Guide to Creative Nonprofit Fundraising + The Ultimate Insider's Guide to Winning Foundation Grants: A Foundation Ceo Reveals the Secrets You Need to Know + Perfect Phrases for Writing Grant Proposals (Perfect Phrases Series)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 216 pages
  • Publisher: Jossey-Bass; 2 edition (January 20, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470381221
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470381229
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #56,795 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

This second edition of the best-selling book Storytelling forGrantseekers contains all the resources and information neededto help craft a persuasive summary, package a compelling narrativestory, and create a short story approach to letters of inquiry.Cheryl Clarke walks grantseekers through all the phases ofdeveloping an effective proposal and highlights the creativeelements that link components to each other and unify the entireproposal. Clarke also stresses the larger grantseeking effort, onethat emphasizes preparation, working with the entire developmentstaff and board of directors, and maintaining positive relationswith funders. Using this resource, new and seasoned grantseekerswill discover how to channel their passion and creativity to telltheir organization's tale and create winning proposals.

Completely revised and updated, this new edition contains:

  • A collection of new illustrative examples

  • Exercises that incorporate the storytelling approach

  • Suggestions for planning and hosting successful site visits

  • A helpful example of a full narrative proposal

  • Information about how the storytelling approach applies to otherfundraising communications such as appeal letters and casestatements

Praise for the Second Edition of Storytelling forGrantseekers

"Clarke's book is easy to read and follow, and her contentionthat grantmakers will be persuaded by a compelling story thatdemonstrates both knowledge of program and need for funding isspot-on."
Catherine Fisher, trustee, The Thomas J. LongFoundation

"Cheryl Clarke breaks down the steps of writing a successfulgrant proposal and makes the entire process as natural as that ofsharing the story of all the good work that our organizations do inthe world."
Dorotea Reyna, director of development, CaliforniaInstitute of Integral Studies

"I recommend her book to all my students."
Vivienne French, parttime faculty, Truckee MeadowsCommunity College, Reno, Nevada

"My first edition is worn out from good use."
Jean Therrien, executive director, NeighborhoodFamily Practice

About the Author

Cheryl A. Clarke is a fundraising consultant with more than 20 years of experience in the nonprofit sector. She works with a wide range of nonprofit agencies to improve their fundraising capacity. Clarke is also a much-in-demand trainer and speaker and has presented at several international conferences of the Association of Fundraising Professionals.

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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See all 13 customer reviews
It is very easy to read.
Betty J. Thomas
Cheryl Clarke uses the art of storytelling as a framework for writing grants.
Michele Khateri
This book is an excellent primer on grantwriting and the process overall.
Sarah C. Durham

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Jeff Lippincott VINE VOICE on January 1, 2009
Format: Paperback
I kinda liked this book. Until now I have made it a point to avoid writing a book review for any nonprofit fundraising books on grant writing. I guess I am breaking with tradition for this book because I see some redeeming value to it. The first edition for this book came out in 2001 and had two less chapters and no appendix. Also, chapters 2, 3 and 6 of the original edition have been reworked for the new edition.

I suspect Amazon will be posting a Search Inside feature for this book in the next month or so. As a result, I won't be listing the chapter titles here. However, if they are not listed then I encourage you to examine the Search Inside feature at Amazon for the first edition. See ISBN: 9780787956301. The new or updated chapters are:

2. Research & relationships: Finding & cultivating your audience
3. The short story: Writing letters of inquiry
6. Goals, objectives, & methods: Making changes by addressing the problem
11. Site visits & beyond: Interacting with funders
12. Beyond grants: Applying the storytelling method
A. The final manuscript: Two letter proposal samples

The book includes numerous examples of inquiry letters, introductions, location descriptions, cases for support (needs), goals-objectives-desired outcomes, and executive summaries. I found them all to be well done.

This book is all about how to make a grant proposal readable. And I wish it had stuck to that topic alone, because when it moved into the realm of research and packaging the grant proposal that is where I had problems. Two books that might be of interest to the reader of this book are: "What's Your Story?" (ISBN: 9780132277426), and "Developing Your Case for Support" (ISBN: 9780787952457).
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Sandra Brown on February 8, 2009
Format: Paperback
Storytelling for Grantseekers: A Guide to Creative Nonprofit Fundraising

Grantwriting books are, unfortunately, often as confusing and tedious as the process itself. Clarke's book, "Storytelling for Grantseekers" is a welcome reprieve from the jargon-laden books that have been the standard-bearers for the past 20 years or so. From the conversational tone to the organization of the book, she's made it easy to follow, with real examples that clearly illustrate her points.

Most metaphors only go so far, but in storytelling Clarke has found perhaps the best way of explaining in comprehensive terms the process of writing a proposal. She doesn't take the idea too far; instead, she relates it in concrete, reasonable terms without oversimplifying the process. Clarke's storytelling model would also work well in a grantwriting course or workshop. She takes a common-sense approach to explaining some of the more arcane aspects of grantwriting, and brings humor into the process without sounding trite or condescending.

Especially important and unique to Clarke's approach are the budget and cash-flow sections. Instead of presenting a budget as a 'necessary evil' that is secondary to writing the proposal, she argues that the budget is essentially a translation of the proposal into numbers, and is equally important in telling a nonprofit's story. She offers clear explanations and provides effective tools and examples to follow. Most nonprofits do not take the important step of creating a cashflow chart for their organization. In these lean times, cashflow is critical to ensure a program or project's success.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Kindle Customer on December 30, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I just started grant writing and this is one of my top favorite books because it helps with developing more creative letters and proposals. I would have liked to have seen more examples of Letters of Inquiries. There are also other grant writing books out there too. One of my other favorites is "The only grant writing book you'll ever need".
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Format: Paperback
This book is an excellent primer on grantwriting and the process overall. Clarke outlines clear, easy to follow steps for developing a compelling story, using budgets, and maintaining a thoughtful approach to grantseeking overall. She addresses both the creative writing aspects and the process of it all clearly and helpfully, lacing short examples throughout. She talks about letters of intent, evaluations, how to handle rejection, and other key elements any grantwriter should master. It's a must read for those new to grantwriting who need to get up to speed fast.
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By Marianna Clair on January 19, 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very unhappy with this book. It arrived quickly and on time, but within a few uses of this book the pages began to fall out of the book! This was supposedly a brand new book, but new books don't do that. dOr if they do they are just poorly made. Not happy with the manufacture of this book, especially since I am using this book for a class and its hard to read when the pages keep falling out. Would not recommend ordering through Amazon.
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By Michael Hinson on May 20, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is a great resource for my learners and a very easy read. I plan to continue using it in my Fundraising and Marketing courses moving forward.
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Change your grant proposals from functional to dazzling.While this book doesn't contain any truly new ideas, it combines the best practices for creating compelling grant requests with an easy to follow format.
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