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Writing for Pleasure, Writing for Publishing Workshop

  • Wivenhoe House Hotel, Colchester Campus, University of Essex CO4 3SQ (map)

Is it possible to actually enjoy academic writing? In this two-part workshop, Professor Helen Sword and Dr Will Pooley make an evidence-based case for recuperating pleasure as a legitimate (and indeed crucial) academic emotion. Via practical exercises, they show how you can enjoy writing, and in this way become a more engaging communicator, skilful wordsmith and productive researcher.

In Part 1,  Professor Sword  demonstrates how a person’s entire approach to writing (including thinking of it as pain or pleasure) shapes their ability to communicate well. Drawing on interviews with 100 successful academics, and questionnaire data from 1223 academic writers in 15 countries, Professor Sword considers aspects of the academic writer’s craft including daily writing habits, how academics learn to write, the emotions they associate with academic writing, and how to develop the courage to push against stylistic conventions and the resilience to cope with criticism and rejection.

In Part 2, Dr Will Pooley will explore how to make your writing compelling. Through writing exercises and group discussion, he will cover three broad themes: coming up with compelling ideas; writing hacks; and editing your friends.

Learning to take a holistic approach to writing will not only improve your thesis, publications and grant applications, but your emotional wellbeing and your enjoyment of academic life. Writing well, and enjoying writing, are skills that will benefit you in the immediate future but can also be carried through into diverse careers. This is an unparalleled opportunity to learn from experts on stylish academic writing.