The Writing Fellowship
Get your writing published
The internet is sprinkled with great advice on writing effectively. Dilbert creator Scott Adams put forward a short and crisp blog “The Day You Became a Better Writer” where he shares tricks for clarity and persuasion, two fundamental pillars of business writing. You should read it and complement it with the “Surprise + Inevitability” framework advanced by Elizabeth Gilbert.
Lack of actionable nuggets isn’t what holds most of us back from becoming better writers. The core challenge is to translate ideas and insights into action.
When was the last time you wrote a long-form essay or a memo or a short story? Most of us never seem to have the bandwidth. There is work to be done, assignments to be completed, Tweets to be shared and WhatsApp forwards to deal with. Despite the myriad commitments, we need to carve out time to write consistently. It is an essential life skill.
How does this work?
No one is born a great writer. We become better with deliberate practice, a special type of practice that is both purposeful and systematic. While regular practice might include mindless repetitions, deliberate practice requires focused attention and is conducted with the specific goal of improving performance. In the Network Capital Writing Fellowship, you will engage in deliberate practice as a community. There are 3 key elements to the fellowship.
1. Practice the pitch: We want all participants to become published authors. The first step is to learn to pitch to newspapers, magazines and journals. Even if you work in a company and have no immediate aspiration of getting published, practicing your pitch will help you get access to internal opportunities like never before.
The pitch is the main idea and you need to learn to synthesize it in a couple of paragraphs. It is a tricky process. We will teach you how to get it right.
2. Get the first draft out: You need to put your work out there for critique. The first few drafts are always crappy but without them you can’t expect to advance your writing skills.
With the help of a supportive community (30 participants who will be participating in the fellowship with you), you will read the work of others and share your feedback with each other. Peer-review is how ideas develop. Our goal is to make you comfortable with critique and criticism so that the final output is significantly better than what you started with.
3. Time-Bound, Deliberate Practice: We all have blind spots when it comes to writing. During the fellowship, we will help you figure out your own style and complement it with specific insights to overcome your blind spots.
The fellowship journey
The fellowship will require 8-12 hours of engagement very week for three weeks. Live sessions will be held on the weekends (typical at night IST); and weekdays will be for 1:1 mentoring and community building.
- Writing the introduction
- Identifying your audience
- Pitching to published
- Building your reading OS
- Writing powerful endings