Emerging Writer Fellowship

Our Current Fellows: 


Stevie Billow (they/them) is a writer, educator, and creative organizer originally from rural Vermont. Stevie graduated from Smith College in 2019 with a BA in History and Art History. In 2020, they earned their MA in Teaching from the Universidad de Alcalá. Their work has previously appeared in Meat for Tea: The Valley Review, On the Run, The Blood Pudding, and Fauxmoir among others. They are the founder and an active member of a multimedia arts collective called Rotary Arts (@rotary_arts on Instagram) that showcases collaborative work by emerging LGBTQ+ creators. More of Stevie’s writing and projects can be found via steviebillow.com.

What does being selected for this fellowship mean to you?

Being selected as an Emerging Writer Fellow is a life-changing opportunity for me! There have been precious few moments in my life where I've been able to prioritize writing. Thanks to GrubStreet, I know I’ll finally have access to resources that will take my work to the next level and lay the foundations of my writing career. I have long admired GrubStreet’s dedication to marginalized writers and am so excited to join this community! I intend to use this year to explore authenticity in writing, reading, and as part of Boston’s creative ecosystem.


Malik Thompson (he/him) is a Black queer man from Washington, DC. His work is featured, or forthcoming, in MQR Mixtape, Voicemail Poems, Poet Lore, and other places. He has received support from Lambda Literary, Obsidian Foundation, Cave Canem, Brooklyn Poets, and other organizations. He can be found on Instagram via the handle @latesummerstar.

What does being selected for this fellowship mean to you?

As a writer who hasn't studied at the university level, I thoroughly cherish opportunities to learn and refine my handle on craft. I am honored to have been chosen by the folks at GrubStreet to join their community and receive a year of concentrated support for my development as a writer. Being selected for this fellowship means that I am entering a writing community that is excited about my work and my work's future potential, the highest form of praise for an emerging writer. I hope to make long-lasting connections with my fellowship cohort that are nurturing, and I am excited to witness the growth I've undergone once my tenure as a fellow has ended.


As an emerging writer and activist, divina (he/they) has been attending classes with Grubstreet since they were 14. divina is currently working in Representative Mary Keefe’s office researching and writing for a bill that will ensure incarcerated people’s rights to education. In addition to their work in Massachusetts Policy, divina is working for Educators for Excellence in community organizing for a bill to protect teachers from layoffs. divina’s life experience within the department of children and families, foster care system, and being system-involved has informed not only their political action, but writing. divina’s goal is to create a series of essays that approach systemic issues from an intersectional lens, shedding light on their experience and the inadequacy of child welfare systems in Massachusetts for young people in crisis.

What does being selected for this fellowship mean to you?

This fellowship is an incredible opportunity to me, especially as someone who never considered their writing as important and impactful. The impact that this fellowship will have on me, through building community and confidence cannot be understated. I am really honored to be able to take part of a community that genuinely and sincerely sees, understands, and wants to see me succeed because that sort of kindness is really rare to see.

In a Nutshell

The Emerging Writer Fellowship aims to develop new, exciting voices by providing three writers per year tuition-free access to GrubStreet’s classes and two Muse & the Marketplace summits. Over the course of one year, each Emerging Writer Fellow will attend a combination of seminars and multi-week courses of their choosing, along with a wide selection of Muse & The Marketplace programming, in order to enhance their understanding of craft and the publishing industry.

The 2024-2025 Emerging Writer Fellowship application is now open! The application deadline is Monday, March 11, 2024. Ready to submit?

Submit your application here.

We hope that fellows will be able to join us in-person for classes and events. Priority will be given to applicants who will be able to join us in Boston.


The Emerging Writer Fellowship will be awarded to three writers who demonstrate a passion for writing, a commitment to developing their writing abilities, and financial need. Any person 18 and older who demonstrates ability and passion for writing is eligible.

The Emerging Writer Fellowship will provide access to each of the following:

  • 4 multi-week courses
  • 4 one-day (6hr) classes
  • 4 three-hour seminars
  • Access to a wide selection Muse & the Marketplace conference series programming
  • Access to GrubStreet's Education Director and/or other program staff members for quarterly (or as-needed) office hours for personalized mentorship. (Not Required) 

Who Should Apply

This fellowship is open to anyone 18 and older with a passion for writing. The fellowship specifically aims to assist writers in need of financial assistance in reaching their writing goals. We particularly encourage writers of color, ethnic minorities, those who identify as LGBTQ+, people with disabilities, and other members of communities historically underrepresented by the literary community to apply.

Why We Created This Fellowship

Over the years, GrubStreet encountered more and more people who loved to write but didn't have the money to invest in a creative writing education that would help advance their craft or give them a thoughtful introduction to the publishing world. As part of its mission to make sure that voices of every type and talent are heard, GrubStreet developed the Emerging Writer Fellowship to eliminate some of the financial barriers to entry. Through this program, we hope to connect writers to a literary world – a world made richer and more relevant with the contribution of these voices. 

In the program's first year, we were able to offer one fellowship to one student. As of the 2018-2019 cycle, we are able to offer a second fellowship in memory of novelist Anita Shreve, longtime board member and dear friend of GrubStreet. Thanks to the generous support of our donors, we will now be offering three fellowships in the 2021-2022 cycle. 

How to Apply

The Emerging Writer Fellowship Application Form will require the following:

  • A sample of your writing that demonstrates your artistic style and voice. 5-10 pages for prose, screenwriting, or playwriting. 3-7 pages for poetry.
  • A personal statement -- no more than 500 words please! -- which should include the following:
    • How you envision using the fellowship.
    • A description of your relationship to writing. By this we mean: what excites you about it? What does it mean to you personally?
    • How the fellowship will help you in your growth and success as a writer. 
    • Your writing and workshop history (Note: Prior workshop experience at GrubStreet is not required).

Frequently Asked Questions: 

Do I need to have a college degree to qualify for this fellowship?
No! The fellowship is open to anyone with a dedication and passion for writing, regardless of education level. If you are committed to your personal growth as a writer, then apply!

If I win this fellowship, do I have to quit my job? Are the classes full time?
The short answer is no. Our flexible class schedule is designed to work around people’s jobs! We offer classes in the morning, evening, and on weekends that you can choose from. However, we do expect the fellows to take full advantage of the courses, as well as attend our Muse & the Marketplace Conference, so you should plan for and commit to a steady amount of writing, homework, and immersion in GrubStreet’s community throughout the fellowship year.

What if I came to writing later in life? Is there an age restriction to this fellowship?
There’s no age restriction for the fellowship! Adult students at GrubStreet range from 18-year-olds to folks over 80. The fellowship is open to the same range of ages.

Are any genres preferred?
We are open to all genres of writing. Current and previous fellows have taken courses in short fiction, novel, nonfiction, magical realism, sci-fi & fantasy, and screenwriting, among others. However, applications that show a cohesive vision of how the applicant would take advantage of the classes to develop their work tend to stand out during our decision-making process.

Other Questions?

If you have specific questions about the Emerging Writer Fellowship, email [email protected] or call the office anytime at 617.695.0075.

Ready to submit? Submit your application here.

"Through this fellowship, I’ve learned to write fearlessly and with unwavering authority. I don’t know what exactly the future holds for my writing career, but I do know that I will never stop writing my stories in the way only I can write them. GrubStreet gave me confidence in that."

— Joanna Kim, 2018-2019 Anita Shreve Emerging Writer Fellow

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