Writing Books/grants


I am currently writing a science fiction book, I'm only sixteen and I do not have a job, and so I have no way to pay for what I am trying to accomplish I have three and a half chapters done, and so I would like to know if there is any way I could receive a grant.

Hi, Abby!

What are you trying to accomplish that you believe you'll need money for? Grants for writers can usually only be gotten for research costs or living expenses. It'll be presumed that since you're 16 you're living with parents/guardians who will take care of basic living expenses, and SF novels don't generally require sufficient research to qualify for funding.

But it might be that you're confused about how publishing works. You're not alone, so it's okay. But I'll explain how it really works so you can relax and just write.

Publishing with a commercial SF publisher in New York like Tor, DAW, Ace or Roc don't require any money out of your pocket. Not for an agent, not for an editor, and not to publish. ZERO money except the price of stamps to send queries. An agent who asks for money is a scam. A publisher who asks for money is a scam (or at least a subsidy publisher---which won't really get your  book into bookstores).

But the book has to be completely written in order to submit it. A debut book MUST be completed. Both Tor and DAW accept direct submissions from authors, and there are plenty of teenaged authors out there who write a mean book--some as young as fourteen.

Does that help any, or is there something else you're considering the grant money would help with?

Once you've finished the book and would like help finding an agent or publisher, let me know and I'll send you in the right direction.


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Cathy Clamp


I'm happy to answer questions about any aspect of writing novels, from the beginning kernel of an idea through completion. I can help with writing a query letter and synopsis to an agent or editor. I can explain publishing terminology and acronyms. I can also assist with questions about verifying the credentials of agents/publishers and how to proceed once you've been accepted for publication. I can teach the rules of formatting a manuscript, creating viable plots, characterization and flow in the following genres: romance, science fiction, fantasy, thrillers, suspense, horror, women's fiction, mainstream and mystery.


I'm a USA Today bestselling author of urban fantasy and paranormal romance for Tor/Forge Books. Along with a co-author, I've published fifteen novels (combination of mass market and trade softcover) since 2003, and have contracts for four more books through 2011.

Romance Writers of America, Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America, International Thriller Writers, Western Outdoor Writers, Horror Writers of America.

Tor/Forge Books, Western Reflections Publishing, BenBella Books, Running Press, Wild Child Publishing. Many others.

My educational background is limited to real life experience of publishing novels commercially for the past five years.

Awards and Honors
USA Today bestseller, Waldenbooks Mass Market Paperback Top 20 bestseller, Nielsen BookScan Top 20 bestseller, RT BOOKreviews Career Achievement Award winner, 2009, Book Buyers Best Award for Paranormal, Romantic Times Best Werewolf Novel, Write Touch Readers Award, EVVY Best Historical Chronicle Award, The Lories Best Paranormal. Many others.

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