interior banner image

We Need Diverse Books is Offering $2000 Grants to Unpublished Writers

We Need Diverse Books is Offering $2000 Grants to Unpublished Writers

Author: Edit Team

May 18, 2020

We Need Diverse Books (WNDB) announces that the 2020 Walter Dean Myers Grants will be open for applications on May 31, 2020. This year, WNDB will give 10 grants at $2000 each to unpublished writers or illustrators from marginalized backgrounds who are working on children’s or young adult literature projects. The submission window is open from May 31, 2010 until the deadline of June 30, 2020, but applications will be capped at the first 300 applicants. Application information can be found here.

“The Walter Grants provides writers and illustrators the stepping stone they might need in order to bring their work to the forefront,” said Marietta Zacker, the program’s co-chair. “Having the funds that give a writer or illustrator the peace of mind, space, equipment, and confidence to produce their work is, at times, the difference between writing or illustrating for fun and publishing your work.”

The Walter Grant program was initiated in 2015 to provide financial support to promising writers and illustrators from diverse communities. Since the program’s launch, WNDB has awarded 16 Walter Grants of $2000 each. Previous recipients include Jennifer de Leon, author of Don’t Ask Me Where I’m From (August 2020); Yamile Saied Méndez, author of Where Are You From? and winner of Lee & Low’s New Voices Award; Jacqueline Alcantara, author of The Field; and Angie Thomas, author of The Hate U Give, a #1 New York Times Bestseller that has also been adapted into a movie produced by Fox 2000 Pictures. The Walter Grant program was on hiatus in 2017 and 2019.

About We Need Diverse Books:

We Need Diverse Books is a grassroots organization of children’s book lovers that advocates essential changes in the publishing industry to produce and promote literature that reflects and honors the lives of all young people. It is our mission to put more books featuring diverse characters in the hands of all children. You can learn more about WNDB programs at

Subscribe to our newsletter