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Literary Individual Project Funding

This opportunity provides up to $15,000 to support the development of individual Alberta artists, arts administrators, or an ensemble of artists by providing funding for a specific literary arts project.


Who can apply

Individual eligibility criteria

To be eligible for individual project funding, you must be a resident of Alberta. This means you:

  • are legally entitled to be or remain in Canada
  • are legally entitled to work in Canada
  • have had your primary residence in Alberta for at least one full year before applying
  • ordinarily live in Alberta for a least six months of each year with the exception of attending a formal program of study

You must be in good standing with the AFA with no open or outstanding projects or reporting to apply. Previous grant recipients must ensure all final reporting has been approved by the AFA before new applications are accepted.

Applicants, including ensembles or collectives, must not be incorporated under either provincial or federal legislation.

Ensembles, collectives, and collaborations

Ensembles, collectives, and collaborations are eligible to apply to this program and must list all principal artists involved in the project activities as part of their application. All members of an ensemble, collective, or collaboration must meet the individual eligibility criteria.

Principal artists cannot apply and/or receive funding for multiple projects at the same time, whether as an individual or a member of various ensembles, collectives, or collaborations.

What does this grant support

To be eligible for project funding:

  • the applicant must own the copyright of a proposed work
  • a proposed publication must be available and accessible to the general public

Please note, AFA funding is not assured for any project.

Eligible literary genres

For the purposes of this funding opportunity, eligible projects include the below list of genres. Literary arts translation and anthology projects in any of the below genres are also eligible:

  • novels
  • short fiction
  • poetry
  • graphic novels
  • plays
  • young adult fiction
  • picture books
  • literary non-fiction*

*The AFA defines literary non-fiction as a genre that uses inventive or literary techniques to produce work that is factually true and artistically elegant, and is written in a personal, identifiable voice. It can include:

  • biography
  • cultural, political or social commentary
  • history
  • literary journalism
  • memoir
  • personal essays
  • travel writing

Types of projects

Through this opportunity, you may apply for project funding to support artistic activities in:

  • art production
  • marketing
  • research
  • training and career development

Art production includes the development, creation, of a work in literary arts.

Projects should be confined to a distinct phase of a work, such as a first or final draft, in one of the eligible literary genres listed above. 

Marketing includes a program of activity for a specific period of time to disseminate a completed literary work and/or to develop audiences and markets for the artist’s work.

Eligible projects include, but are not limited to:

  • promotional reading tours and book launches
  • on-line marketing initiatives such as book trailers
  • attendance at literary festivals, non-academic conferences, or award presentations by invitation

Research includes a program of activity for a specific period of time that supports or results in the development of new work in the literary arts.

Eligible projects include, but are not limited to:

  • experimentation
  • exploration
  • research of primary materials

Training and career development includes a course or program of study to develop a writer’s training in literary arts, including translation.

Eligible projects include, but are not limited to:

  • workshops
  • master classes
  • retreats
  • mentorship programs
  • professional development
  • professional courses of study in literary arts

Eligible expenses

You can receive up to $15,000 to support your project.

You may apply for up to 100% of eligible expenses that are directly related to carrying out your proposed project.

These expenses may include, but are not limited to:

  • artist fees
  • commission fees
  • promotion and publicity
  • transportation and accommodation
  • tuition or training fee
  • royalties
  • administration and contract fees
  • basic living/subsistence expenses (housing, local transportation, food, child care, dependent care) up to $3,000/month
  • other expenses and supplies considered by the AFA to be reasonable and necessary

Ineligible expenses

Costs for publication or production of books or periodicals in print or digital platforms are ineligible for project funding.

Additional expenses and activities that are ineligible for AFA project funding include:

  • expenses for capital purchases, such as computers, printers, software, buildings or property, or for capital development and studio construction or renovations
  • recreational training projects
  • specific component activities undertaken as part of a course of study
  • expenses already incurred prior to application submission, including grant writer fees

Ineligible genres

For the purposes of this funding opportunity, ineligible literary genres include:

  • bibliographies
  • cookbooks
  • catalogues
  • directories
  • guides
  • indexes
  • journalism/reportage
  • lifestyle articles
  • manuals
  • promotional publications
  • scholarly books or articles
  • self-help books
  • textbooks
  • trade journals
  • reference or technical works

Additionally, project funding is not available to support publications in:

  • community newspapers
  • weekly or daily newspapers
  • student or free magazines
  • newsletters of associations or other organizations

Ineligible projects also include production of:

  • privately-printed, self-published, and vanity press publications
  • print-on-demand or shared cost publications