On Deck Writer Fellowship

Where the best writers go to grow their audience and improve their craft.

Apply Now

Application deadline: December 27, 2020
Kick-off: January 16, 2021

On Deck Writer Fellowship

8-week fellowship + fully remote + peer community

The On Deck Writer Fellowship (ODW) is an eight-week program inspired by the success of the On Deck Fellowship.

Bloggers, essayists, and newsletter writers are micro-entrepreneurs: beyond just producing great writing, they have to find their niche, market to readers, and figure out how to grow towards their goals, whether generating revenue, building an audience, or just honing their craft. The experience of establishing a regular writing cadence and cultivating an audience is strengthened by regular support & accountability.

ODW will help groups of 150–200 writers with editing, distribution, and accountability. Through ODW, find your way towards having a successful writing practice, and get connected with an ongoing community of creative, collaborative peers.

Featuring special guests such as...

Tyler Cowen

Polina Marinova

Nadia Eghbal

Kmele Foster

Byrne Hobart

Thomas Chatterton Williams

Katherine Boyle

Robert Cottrell

. . .

Joining us for our first cohort...

ODW1 kicked off in October. Here are a few of the talented Fellows and speakers participating:
Formerly Partner, a16z
Founder, Divinations; formerly Substack
Founder, Trapital
CEO Gumroad; Angel Investor
Academic professor turned independent
Poet & Writer: Editor at Scalawag Magazine
Co-founder, EXMNA, Rights and Religions Forum
Senior Security Engineer, Netflix
Angel Investor
Angel Investor & Writer
Partner, Chapter One
Head of Content, Humu; Author, No Hard Feelings
COO, Morning Brew
Partner, Susa Ventures
Creator, CodeBookClub
Sneakerhead, VC
Co-Founder, Token Daily/Volt
Managing Partner, Worklife Ventures
Writer at New York Magazine
Partner, Gelt VC
See More +

Deon Nicholas

Founder/CEO, Forethought

Li Jin

Angel Investor & Creator

Lindsay Holden

CEO, Long-Game

Dare Olonoh

VP of Sales, Salesforce

Sriram Krishnan

Former Product Lead, Twitter

Jesse Genet

Founder/CEO Lumi

JD Ross

Co-founder, Opendoor

Elizabeth Weil

Angel Investor

Julia DeWahl

Angel Investor | GM, Opendoor

Ryan Hudson

Co-Founder, Honey

Dan Romero

VP, Coinbase

Shivani Siroya

Founder/CEO Tala

Jonathan Swanson

Co-founder, Thumbtack

Soona Amhaz

Co-founder, Token Daily

Justin Kan

Co-Founder, Twitch

Santiago Suarez

Founder/CEO, Addi

Aadil Mamujee

VP product, Automattic

Celine Halioua

Co-founder and CEO, Celevity

Harry Stebbings

Founder, Twenty Minute VC

Sheel Mohnot

Angel Investor

Neil Parikh

Co-Founder, Casper

Josh Elman

VP Product, Robinhood. Formerly Greylock

Megan O'Connor

Founder, Hi Clark

Justin Waldron

Co-founder, Zynga

Ryan Petersen

Founder/CEO, Flexport

The Program

Grow your audience

  • Regular office hours from our partners at Substack on best practices for how to grow newsletters.
  • Deep-dive sessions focused on finding your niche, improving your writing, growing your audience, figuring out a revenue model, and more.
  • Fireside chats and small group breakouts with some of the world's best essayists and newsletter authors.

Hone your craft

  • Writing workshops led by the ODW team, with guest appearances from successful authors and editors of all stripes.
  • Peer editing and 1:1 editing support with ODW team as needed.
  • Commit to a regular writing cadence as you see fit and the ODW team will help keep you accountable.

Apply for the On Deck Writer Fellowship

ODW2 kicks off January 16, 2021.

Special early-bird pricing: $1,990

Apply Now

Access to the On Deck Founder Fellowship

The On Deck Founder Fellowship (ODF) is a 10-week program that creates an incredible community around a cohort of experienced founders & talented individuals in the formative stages of starting a company.

As an On Deck Writer Fellow, you’ll have complete access to the rest of the On Deck Fellowship, full of world-class startup experts who can help you with marketing, growth, and connecting with leaders in your subject matter.

Want to learn more about ODF? 👉Read the ODF5 Announcement Post

What to Expect

Finding Your Niche

Learn how to figure out what you're distinctly suited to tell the world about.

Growing Your Audience

Get your first 100 readers, or your next 100,000, bystudying what's worked for other experts in the field.

Revenue Models and Other Goals

Learn how to make money from your work through forms like the paid newsletter. Or, leverage your audience towards other goals like establishing expertise.

Platforms & Technology

Find the right technology stack for your newsletter or blog, and other affiliated components like landing pages and subscription services.

Feedback & Accountability

Join writing workshops with other members of your cohort, plus office hours and editing from the On Deck team.

Communicating Visually

Learn how to incorporate imagery into your writing to create a unique visual brand for yourself.

In partnership with Substack

We are excited to be partnering with Substack to co-deliver elements of the On Deck Writer Fellowship curriculum.

What people are saying...

Apply for the On Deck Writer Fellowship

ODW2 kicks off January 16, 2021.

Special early-bird pricing: $1,990

Apply Now

FAQ

Who should apply?

To be a good fit for ODW, you are probably:

  • A strong and enthusiastic writer with some form of past work to point to, whether that’s a published piece, an existing newsletter or blog, some copywriting you did for a job, or even just a short story you wrote when you were fourteen.
  • At least a little bit entrepreneurial, with an independent spirit.
  • Eager to be an active participant in a growing community, as much of the value of On Deck comes from the network and peer-to-peer connections.

You do not need to have an existing blog or newsletter to apply to the Fellowship. ODW is for writers who want to start building an audience as well as grow an existing one.

What does it cost?

Joining the On Deck Writer Fellowship is $1,990.

We're currently offering this as special early-bird pricing—it'll rise in the coming months, so apply now!

What is the time commitment? 

ODW is a choose-your-own-adventure buffet. You get out what you put in: often, the biggest contributors are also the biggest beneficiaries.

Depending on your schedule and interests, you could choose to:

  • Attend everything and “gorge” yourself on knowledge until you explode
  • Tune in at your leisure to attend sessions that interest you
  • Or just search the directory and connect with interesting people one-on-one
Do I have to write about tech or business?

Absolutely not! We’re aiming to build a cohort with writers spanning a wide range of subject matter.

Is this a fully remote program? 

Yes: ODW will be run entirely remotely. This enables participation from all corners of the world. We’ve spent the past two ODF cohorts mastering the playbook for building remote communities and relationship building online, and will apply the same approach here.

Post-COVID, we’ll return to organizing offline programming like dinners, small gatherings, and retreats, but the core Fellowship will remain a remote-first experience.

What are the demographics of the Fellowship?

We’re aiming to build a cohort that is diverse across race/ethnicity, gender, sexuality, national origin, professional background, age, viewpoint, and subject matter—you name it!

We don’t yet have specific demographics for ODW, but we released a demographic breakdown for ODF4 that can serve as a useful comparison.

What are the Guiding Values of On Deck?

On Deck lives by four core guiding values, crucial to the culture we strive to foster in the community:

  • Service: On Deck is bigger than any one person. For this community to thrive, it must be driven by a spirit of service to others. Be generous with your time, knowledge, and support. Karma has a way of finding its way back.
  • Sacredness: By default, everything is off the record. Many in this group are searching for something deeper in their lives or making big transitions, and others may not yet have publicly shared this with friends, family, or employers. Please honor that, and avoid sharing anything you learn about each other without explicit permission.
  • Respect: You are all now part of the On Deck family. You’re all embarking on what will surely be a rollercoaster of a journey — but you’re in this shared experience together. With that comes a sense of responsibility: be inclusive, stick together, and respect one another.
  • Gratitude: have a spirit of curiosity and gratitude. We’re bringing together a group of fascinating people, most of whom likely have never met each other…how amazing is that? Get to know each other, and make the cohort what you want it to be for yourself.
Did we miss your question? Drop us a line and we will get back to you asap.

FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

What’s the goal of the On Deck Angel Fellowship?

But helping founders is just half of the equation. If a startup chooses to raise capital, who they raise from can have an incredible impact on its trajectory in the early days. 

Founders love raising from other founders and experienced operators. They’ve been there before, have great advice, networks, and know their markets better than anyone else. If we’re trying to 10x the number of world-class founders, it stands to reason we should help grow the number of top investors who will back them early, as well.

  • Sacredness: By default, everything is off the record. Many in this group are searching for something deeper in their lives or making big transitions, and others may not yet have publicly shared this with friends, family, or employers. Please honor that, and avoid sharing anything you learn about each other without explicit permission.
  • Respect: You are all now part of the On Deck family. You’re all embarking on what will surely be a rollercoaster of a journey — but you’re in this shared experience together. With that comes a sense of responsibility: be inclusive, stick together, and respect one another.
  • Gratitude: have a spirit of curiosity and gratitude. We’re bringing together 200 fascinating people, most of whom likely have never met each other…how amazing is that? Get to know each other, and make the cohort what you want it to be for yourself.
Do I have to be an accredited investor?

On Deck lives by four core guiding values, crucial to the culture we strive to foster in the community:

  • Service: On Deck is bigger than any one person. For this community to thrive, it must be driven by a spirit of service to others. Be generous with your time, knowledge, and support. Karma has a way of finding its way back.
  • Sacredness: By default, everything is off the record. Many in this group are searching for something deeper in their lives or making big transitions, and others may not yet have publicly shared this with friends, family, or employers. Please honor that, and avoid sharing anything you learn about each other without explicit permission.
  • Respect: You are all now part of the On Deck family. You’re all embarking on what will surely be a rollercoaster of a journey — but you’re in this shared experience together. With that comes a sense of responsibility: be inclusive, stick together, and respect one another.
  • Gratitude: have a spirit of curiosity and gratitude. We’re bringing together 200 fascinating people, most of whom likely have never met each other…how amazing is that? Get to know each other, and make the cohort what you want it to be for yourself.
Will I get deal flow from this?

On Deck lives by four core guiding values, crucial to the culture we strive to foster in the community:

  • Service: On Deck is bigger than any one person. For this community to thrive, it must be driven by a spirit of service to others. Be generous with your time, knowledge, and support. Karma has a way of finding its way back.
  • Sacredness: By default, everything is off the record. Many in this group are searching for something deeper in their lives or making big transitions, and others may not yet have publicly shared this with friends, family, or employers. Please honor that, and avoid sharing anything you learn about each other without explicit permission.
  • Respect: You are all now part of the On Deck family. You’re all embarking on what will surely be a rollercoaster of a journey — but you’re in this shared experience together. With that comes a sense of responsibility: be inclusive, stick together, and respect one another.
  • Gratitude: have a spirit of curiosity and gratitude. We’re bringing together 200 fascinating people, most of whom likely have never met each other…how amazing is that? Get to know each other, and make the cohort what you want it to be for yourself.
How much does it cost?

On Deck lives by four core guiding values, crucial to the culture we strive to foster in the community:

  • Service: On Deck is bigger than any one person. For this community to thrive, it must be driven by a spirit of service to others. Be generous with your time, knowledge, and support. Karma has a way of finding its way back.
  • Sacredness: By default, everything is off the record. Many in this group are searching for something deeper in their lives or making big transitions, and others may not yet have publicly shared this with friends, family, or employers. Please honor that, and avoid sharing anything you learn about each other without explicit permission.
  • Respect: You are all now part of the On Deck family. You’re all embarking on what will surely be a rollercoaster of a journey — but you’re in this shared experience together. With that comes a sense of responsibility: be inclusive, stick together, and respect one another.
  • Gratitude: have a spirit of curiosity and gratitude. We’re bringing together 200 fascinating people, most of whom likely have never met each other…how amazing is that? Get to know each other, and make the cohort what you want it to be for yourself.
Did we miss your question? Drop us a line and we will get back to you asap.