Sure, my middle name is Grant (literally), but applying for funding is a nightmare.
Firstly, you have to look around and see what is available, after which you need to check out the nitty-gritty to find out if that applies to you. This narrows it down quite a bit, but even when you decide on a reasonable option, like this, you find out there are other ones like this that might be even better (financially), or worse (due to your affiliations).
Once you start writing the application – and you’re feeling pretty okay about the whole thing (by this I mean in with a chance but accepting of the low likelihood of actually obtaining the funding), you get hit with a question like this:
“Describe the most relevant experience or skills that you will bring to the Library?”
This is tough, because this particular grant basically hooks you up with a personal librarian, a desk and near-24 hour access. Essentially, it makes the library work for you, SO WHAT THE HELL DO THEY WANT FROM ME?
Confusing, no? Anyway, you forge on and make up some bogus stuff about how your experience will help the library accumulate new material and turn it into a living space rather than a dusty archive, and hope for the best.
And that’s where I am. I’ve got great referees, a pretty good draft application and 27 hours (that looks far too much like 127 Hours for my liking) left to get it in. But if that doesn’t work out, I can always try the second option from above with a few tweaks.
But back to the writing all the same. Oh (miscellaneous deity) grant me strength…