The Whiting Foundation recognizes that works of deeply researched and imaginatively composed nonfiction come into being at great cost to writers in time and resources. The Whiting Creative Nonfiction Grant of $40,000 will be awarded to as many as eight writers in the process of completing a book-length work of nonfiction for a general, not an academic, readership. Its purpose is to give grantees the additional means to do exacting research, to free up the time to bring the writing to the highest possible standard, and to encourage original and ambitious projects. 

Whiting welcomes submissions for works of history, cultural or political reportage, biography, memoir, the sciences, philosophy, criticism, food or travel writing, and personal essays, among other categories. Again, the work should be intended for a general reader.  Self-help titles and textbooks are not eligible.

Projects must currently be under contract with a publisher in the United States to be eligible, and the contract must have been signed at least two years before applying for the grant; this is to ensure that the writer is sufficiently far along to identify challenges that have arisen since beginning work. Contracts have to be dated on or prior to May 2, 2016 in order to be eligible - no exceptions. Authors must be US citizens or residents to qualify.

The deadline for the 2018 grant is May 2, 2018. All materials must be received by 11:59pm Eastern Time on this date; incomplete applications will not be considered. We will, however, accept reference letters until May 16th, although we strongly advise applicants to encourage referees to get these letters in as close to May 2nd as possible. All applications will be handled with complete discretion.

A panel of anonymous judges will base their final choices on the excellence of the writing (while understanding that they are reading a work in progress), the import of the subject matter and originality of approach, and financial need, which might vary according to existing support and the requirements of individual projects.

If you have any questions about the eligibility of your project, or the submission process, please contact the Whiting Foundation at