The Authors’ Foundation: Grants for work in progress

Illustration © Antonio Rodriguez
Awarding grants from the Authors' Foundation and K Blundell Trust

The Society of Authors is one of the few organisations to make grants to writers for works in progress, currently awarding over £360,000 each year. 

The Authors’ Foundation and K Blundell Trust award grants to writers whose book project is for a commercial UK publisher.

Finding out I’d been awarded this much-needed grant from the Society of Authors and K Blundell Trust is life-changing news for me… As a single mum with sole responsibility for bills and running the house, I work five says a week in my job, as well as freelancing. Prioritisation and constant money worries mean I rarely get a moment to write and my writing career often feels like an afterthought… As well as lifting an enormous burden off my shoulders, knowing the judges like my existing book and the premise of my new one is a brilliant confidence boost.

Emily Morris (2019 recipient)

An Authors’ Foundation grant means, of course, time – I can now see my way through the months to [my project’s] end – but it also means a great boost in spirits and confidence, a sense that others too believe in this project. For both of these things, I am enormously grateful.

Tom Bullough (2018 recipient)

From 2021, Authors’ Foundation grants included the World of Books Impact Award – two annual grants of £5,000 each for books of any genre that have the power to inspire progressive behaviour change – awarded for the first time in October 2021.


There are no deadlines for this fund as it is open on a rolling basis. Please download the below form and submit to [email protected] in order to apply.

We anticipate that applicants will hear back within 12 weeks of application though there may be initial delays as we update our systems.

If you have any questions please get in touch via [email protected].

Grants are usually between £2,000-£3,500 and are a maximum of £6,250. 

How to apply

You are eligible to apply if

You have been commissioned by a commercial British or Irish publisher to write a full-length work of fiction, poetry, or non-fiction and need funding (in addition to any publisher’s advance) for important research, travel, or other general expenditure. 


You are without a contractual commitment with a publisher but have had at least one book published commercially by a British or Irish publisher, of which you are the sole author, and there is a strong likelihood that your next book will be published in Britain or Ireland.

In both cases you must have a non-contributory contract (either currently or for a previous publication) where you, the author, did not pay funds towards publication costs.

Self-published books are not currently eligible for the funds. This, and all criteria for the funds, is kept under review by the trustees. 

  • No author may apply to the Foundation twice in the same year.
  • Grants are only given for one work in progress.
  • Successful applicants must wait four years before reapplying to the Foundation. For example if you received funds in 2020 you must wait until 2025 before reapplying.
  • Grants will not be awarded to cover publication costs. Read more in our Frequently Asked Questions.
  • Editors and screenwriters are not eligible.

About the grants

The grants are awarded through the Authors’ Foundation and K Blundell Trust registered charities, and are comprised of a range of specific awards.

Authors’ Foundation

The Authors’ Foundation was set up from donations by authors in 1984. It has received contributions from authors, charitable trusts, and the Royal Literary Fund.

Applications to the Authors’ Foundation will also be considered for the World of Books Impact Award.

Charity number 326605 / Arthur Welton 282446

K Blundell Trust

The K Blundell Trust, generously endowed by the late Kathleen Blundell, gives grants of up to £6,000 to British authors under the age of 40 whose work, which can be fiction or non-fiction, aims to increase social awareness. 

Charity number 296487​

All applicants to the Authors’ Foundation will also be automatically considered for the following specific grants. However, if you think any of the below are particularly relevant to your work in progress please highlight this in your application.

World of Books Impact Award (new for 2021)

Two annual grants of £5,000 each for books of any genre that have the power to inspire progressive behaviour change. Read more

Eric Ambler Awards 

In memory of the spy thriller writer. 

Taner Baybars Awards

Offer funding for original fiction in the fields of science fiction, fantasy, and magic realism (for both adult and children’s fiction) 

John Brooks Awards 

In memory of John Brooks, offering funding to writers based in the West Country or Wales 

Roger Deakin Awards 

Offer funding to authors of creative works of any genre, concerned with natural history, landscape or the environment, in memory of the environmentalist, writer and film maker Roger Deakin. 

Antonia Fraser Grants 

For a biography of a woman or women. 

John Heygate Awards 

In memory of John Heygate, to help authors of commissioned works of travel writing. 

John C Laurence Awards 

Offer funding to works, of any genre, which help to improve understanding between races. 

Michael Meyer Awards 

In memory of Michael Meyer, a generous benefactor, who wrote about the theatre and translated the plays of Ibsen and Strindberg. 

Arthur Welton Awards 

In memory of the philanthropist and poet Arthur Welton. 

The Great Britain Sasakawa Grant 

One grant of £2,000 is awarded annually, in either round of awards. Works of fiction or non-fiction about any aspect of Japanese culture or society, or set in a Japanese context, will be considered. Preference will be given to works which help to interpret modern Japan to the English-speaking world.