What is it? Reflection.
Take some time after your next grant is submitted and ask yourself the following questions:
- What went particularly well in this process? Is it something that normally goes well, or was this different? If it was a pleasant surprise, is there some way to modify your process to repeat this circumstance so it does happen again?
- What didn't go so well in the grant writing process? What was the cause of this issue? Is there something you can change to prevent it from happening again?
Another suggestion is to pick up a copy of the grant you just submitted a week or two later. Read it with the scoring criteria or scoring rubric at your side. Make notes about what you improve. Make those notes general enough to apply to any grant you may write in the future, but also note the examples from this grant so it will be a good reminder for you as your review your notes later.
There are many ways to reflect on your work, but the act of reflection is critical if you want to continue to improve as a writer. It is worth the time. In fact, if your livelihood depends on grant writing, you really can't afford not to.