Free workshop on applying for Arts Council England’s Developing Your Creative Practice fund


If you are not familiar with applying for grant funding, filling out an application form can be a daunting and baffling process. Ruth Harrison and Eva Lewin from Spread the Word will be running a free workshop for London based writers on Tuesday January 2020  at Spread the Word’s offices in Deptford to support writers to create an application for Arts Council England’s Developing Your Creative Practice (DYCP) fund. They’ll talk you through the different questions in the DYCP form to help you think about how you can respond to them.  

Arts Council England’s DYCP fund is for individual artists to apply for lottery funding to develop a new piece of creative work and a new way of working.   You can apply for up to £10,000 towards for activities and support such as e.g., mentoring, time to write, research, or professional development costs.  Whatever it is you want to do, the project you have in mind must be about making step-change in the kind of work you produce and involve you writing in a different literary form from your previous work. If you are an individual writer  or representative of a writing / literary group looking for support in developing an Arts Council England Projects Grant instead, please check out our development workshop offer here:

Once you have attended the workshop you can send your draft application to Spread the Word for feedback in more detail.   

Is this workshop right for you? 

This workshop is designed to support people who:

  • Are writers of literary forms including playwriting and graphic novels with a track record as a writer already – eg being published or produced by a small independent publish or producer or mainstream publisher / producer) published in magazines, shortlisted for writing competitions or working professionally on the poetry circuit; 

  • Have a clear idea of what your proposed project is, what you want to achieve and how you are going to go about it;  

  • Be able to show how your project involves you working in a different literary form from your previous work; 

  • Have read through all the ACE guidance before you apply to take part in the workshop, so that you are reasonably sure that what you have in mind is suitable for DYCP funding(If what you want to do involves engaging audiences or participants, then you should go for a Project Grant instead.) 

We strongly recommend you look at the successful applicant case studies on ACE’s website, including this one: 

This workshop will: 

  • Give you an insight into the purpose of the fund; 

  • Help you think through your project; 

  • Take you through all stages of the application process; 

  • Look at what will make a strong application; 

  • Provide opportunities for you ask questions about your own proposal.

Places are limited. Because of the nature of the workshop we are only able to offer spaces to applicants whose ideas are suitable for this particular funding stream.  

We anticipate that demand will be high for this workshop so please only book yourself a place if you are committed to attending.  The workshop is open to writers of literary forms including playwriting and graphic novels.  It is not open to artists working in othemedia including documentary film making. 

The workshop is FREE but places are limited.

To express your interest in attending this workshop, please email [email protected] with a brief paragraph on your project idea and saying how it is different from your previous work; include details of your track record or attach your writer’s CV. Please put DYCP Workshop in the email subject line. Closing date for workshop expressions of interest is Monday 16 December 12 noon. We’ll contact you after this deadline, before Christmas to let you know whether we can offer you a place.

Workshop details

Date: Tuesday January 2020 

Time: 6.30-8.30pm 

Cost: FREE 

Location:  Spread the Word, The Albany, Douglas Way, Deptford, SE8 4AG.  

Please contact us to discuss your access requirements you may have at [email protected] 

About the workshop leaders 

Ruth Harrison joined Spread the Word as Director in 2015. Her working life has been in the field of the arts and particularly in literature. She has been Director of Apples and Snakes, a literature development officer and programme manager at The Reading Agency. She is passionate about not only widening people’s engagement with writers and writing but also in developing writing talent. Widening participation and engagement alongside developing and building awareness of new voices has been core to her work.

Ruth has previously been a trustee of Little Green Pig – a charity working to inspire children and young people to get creative with writing, sits on the steering committee for The Literary Platform’s Jerwood Fiction Uncovered Prize and is part of the team developing EmpathyLab – a start-up using words and stories to build young people’s empathy skills.

At Spread the Word, Ruth is responsible for leading the company artistically and strategically and working with our highly skilled and dedicated team to make a difference to and for writers and their audiences in London.

Eva Lewin is Writer Development Manager at Spread the Word where she leads on the one-to-one support for writers, through feedback surgeries and professional development coaching. Eva commissioned the Writing the Future research (published in 2015) into Black and Asian writers and publishers in the UK marketplace. She continues to work on the strategy to take forward the diversity agenda, including Spread the Word’s consultancy on WriteNow with Penguin Random House.

Her twenty years’ experience in the literature sector includes curating creative writing programmes, co-directing the Hackney literature festival, running writers’ residencies and a shop-floor library at Ford’s car factory in Dagenham. Eva is an RD1st accredited coach (ILM Level 7 equivalent).

Published 18 November 2019