This is an archive page where you can browse our previous bodies of work. To keep up to date with our current work, please return to our main site.

Write Here, Write Now!

When and where?

9.30 am – 4 pm at Federation House, Manchester City centre.

Aim & content:

Writing is a huge part of research and yet, as a skill, the focus of training is often assumed to be needed on how to produce scientific papers while retreats tend to focus on blocking out the time and space to write. That’s great and important. What about the experience of writing itself? How can researchers learn to be productive, to keep writing and even enjoy the process?

Hate it? Fear it? Dread it? Put it off?….What if you could enjoy your writing?

Like so many things we have to do, writing for your research is one of those things we rarely feel satisfied with. We come up with all sorts of distractions. Convince ourselves we need to read more.  Fear wasting time going down the wrong track. Worry we’re not doing justice to the complexity of the ideas we’re grappling with.  It can all get so heavy, so much is at stake. Rarely do we feel satisfied, like we’ve done a good days work!

This 1-day workshop offered a combination of ‘retreat’, to create space to write, and live coaching ‘experiments’, to explore different approaches to the experience of writing.

While working on a current piece of writing (a paper, proposal etc) it aimed to explore what happens if you unlock the possibility of enjoying writing!  The workshop explored confidence, fears, values, goals, and habits while experimenting with different writing moods.

This workshop explores the writing experience to see what happens if you unlock the possibility of enjoying it!  Focusing on a particular piece of writing, in a playful way we explored what our writing agenda is (what’s really at stake in this piece of work?), how we get in our own way (what pressure are you creating in your heads?), how we might write from different experiences (what perspectives might be helpful?) and what might be worth giving a go (what are the options for playing with here?). The day included identifying new writing habits that attendees could start putting into practice.

Participants needed to:

  • bring a laptop and power lead, as they would be writing throughout the day.
  • have something they were currently writing with them (chapter, article, analysis, conference paper)
  • to be curious, open minded about their writing, and be willing to explore different ways of changing the experience.

NOTE: this workshop did not involve assessment of attendees writing or engage with writing style, grammar or English. It was about the experience of writing.

Participants came away with:

  • Dedicated writing time on their topics.
  • Greater awareness of what gets in the way of their writing and how to overcome that.
  • Learning from others about their writing experiences and strategies.
  • A commitment to new writing habits.

This workshop was £45 + VAT for NHS staff, 50 % funded by HEE.

For non-NHS staff, it was £90+ VAT.

© NHS Research & Development North West 2021 | Website by Hearne Creative