Lead Author: The Holloway Guide to Raising Venture Capital
San Francisco, CA
Holloway is a new publishing and technology company in San Francisco that publishes comprehensive, practical Guides researched, written, and refined by experts. Our first Guide, The Holloway Guide to Equity Compensation, is now one of the most trusted resources on the web for navigating the swamp of challenges related to equity-based compensation.
We’re a six-person team with deep experience in writing, machine learning, and search that believes we can create a world where access to existing knowledge isn't a barrier to making progress in our careers.
What we're looking for
Holloway is looking for a lead author for the The Holloway Guide to Raising Venture Capital. Lead authors are at the center of every major Holloway production. They are passionate about helping people navigate complex, thorny topics, and can do so with empathy and respect. If you are extremely knowledgeable on the topic and have practical experience raising venture capital, this is your chance to help those who are a few steps behind you save time, money, and anguish. In addition to helping others, Holloway’s lead authors have the opportunity to interview, exchange ideas, and learn from others who are deeply interested in and knowledgeable about a topic.
Raising Venture Capital will be released in its first edition this summer. We will need a new lead author to shepherd the Guide through major improvements (Edition 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, and so on), with a release cadence of once every two to three months. You’ll work with Holloway’s editorial team, led by Courtney Nash, to decide what improvements should be prioritized in each incremental release—and then to make them happen. For more information on how contributing to Holloway works, check out our post here.
- Help founders avoid all the common pitfalls and pain points of raising venture capital that you and others have encountered.
- Act as the "hub" for all future improvements, helping recruit/coordinating other contributors. (Read about our contributor network.)
- Revise existing content based on editorial guidance and reader feedback.
- Research and write new content based on editorial guidance and reader feedback.
- Suggest ideas for revised/new writing based on your expertise and industry knowledge.
- Time commitment: 40-60 hours per month for at least 3 months
- Expertise: You have practical experience as a founder in the last five years, having raised at least two meaningful venture capital rounds. You negotiated with VCs and worked directly with outside counsel.
- Writing ability: Must have demonstrable writing experience (a few blog posts won’t suffice), and be open and willing to work with a Holloway editor. You’re comfortable writing from your own base of knowledge and interviewing other experts.
- Thoughtfully opinionated: You’re able to incorporate and reconcile disparate opinions. You do not have an axe to grind.You can hold two principles in mind while writing at all times: helpfulness and technical depth.
- Rigor: You’re a thorough, logical thinker who cares about attention to detail and accuracy. You’re allergic to fuzzy thinking or circular reasoning.
- Research: You can find all forms of prior work on a given topic, online and offline, and assess the quality and trustworthiness of sources. You’re able to identify and reconcile conflicting information, including in-person discussions, with existing material.
- Credibility and network: You know experts and the ecosystem of key people in the area. People think you are credible and trustworthy.
- Discipline and project management: You can coordinate many steps and tasks, have the discipline to work on a schedule, and deliver results. You’re competent with basic project management.
- Motivating and communicating with people: You’re able to engage, persuade, and elicit information effectively, including eliciting feedback from potential readers. You can get people to help out while being nice about it. You’re a good in-person communicator who is able to talk in a convincing way in public, such as on a podcast.
The Holloway Story
Holloway started with two people: Andy Sparks and Josh Levy. Andy left his last company fascinated by one question, "What are all the questions Google doesn't provide a good answer for?" Josh, inspired by Doug Engelbart's theory of "intelligence augmentation (or IA)" not "artificial intelligence (AI)" wanted to create a place to share and collaborate on deeply practical knowledge. The two got together in early 2017 with a shared commitment to spend at least ten years working on creating a company that would make it easy for everyone to find the best knowledge, you know, the stuff the top 1% of people in a field know.
Many of the ideas for Holloway came from open source experiments Josh ran on GitHub from 2015-2016. First, he published The Art of the Command Line, which would go on to see more than 800K visitors. Second, he published The Open Guide to Equity Compensation, in the fall of 2015, a collaboration between Josh and several startup lawyers. Third, he published The Open Guide to Amazon Web Services (AWS) in the summer of 2016. The latter two each saw hundreds of thousands of visitors to the GitHub README page and hundreds of contributors.
Andy, on the other hand, had just left a company he co-founded, Mattermark, had spent months researching the clean water industry, and kept finding the best knowledge on clean water wasn't showing up in Google searches, but instead through conversations with venture capitalists he knew from Mattermark. What if the knowledge these experts knew was widely available? What would the world look like then? To test whether people would care, he began exploring publishing collections of knowledge on specific subjects for others to learn from such as "Everything You Should Know About CRISPR—And Where to Learn More."
Shortly thereafter, a mutual friend put two and two together and introduced Andy and Josh. The two spent months learning about each other and reconciling their differing ideas, and decided to join forces in February of 2017.