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Writing Wednesdays: Collaborative Safe Space

Student, writing and hand with notebook for studying, learning and creative notes for academic class. University, college and zoom of hands with pen to write schedule information, planning and ideas.

 One of the benefits that writing  groups provide is that they are a safe collaborative space for academic faculty to share and receive feedback on their work. These groups offer a supportive and non-judgmental environment where faculty members can openly discuss their writing challenges, concerns, and goals. As a collaborative space, faculty who are interested in sharing space with individuals who have common goals, i.e. completing ongoing writing projects, can find supportive fellow writers.

In these groups, faculty can build trust and form strong connections with their colleagues from across campus. Writing groups that are open and regular can connect people who would have no other opportunity to meet.  By sharing their writing journey, struggles, and achievements, participants create a sense of affinity and mutual understanding. Through regular meetings, writing groups promote a culture of accountability. Faculty commit to their writing goals and deadlines, knowing that their peers in the group will provide encouragement and hold them accountable.

Within these spaces, faculty who choose to can freely express their ideas, explore different writing styles and techniques, and experiment with new approaches to their work. This freedom allows them to push the boundaries of their scholarship and foster creativity in their writing. Writing groups also offer an opportunity for faculty members to receive constructive feedback on their writing. Though Writing Wednesdays are slightly more informal, writing group members tend to build camaraderie and start to share their ideas. Peers in the group can provide valuable insights, suggestions, and perspectives that can enhance the quality of their work and help them grow as writers.

Writing groups can serve as a source of emotional support. Faculty often face unique challenges in their writing, such as imposter syndrome or writer’s block. Having a safe space where they can openly discuss and receive empathy for these challenges can alleviate stress and promote overall well-being. By participating in writing groups, faculty develop a sense of belonging and find validation for their academic pursuits. The community aspect of writing groups fosters collaboration, mentorship, and the sharing of resources, ultimately enhancing the scholarly productivity of academic faculty. Please join us for Writing Wednesdays through the Office for Faculty Excellence and the Campus Writing and Speaking Program every Wednesday at noon. On November 8th, we will meet at the Faculty Research Commons in the Hill Library. On November 15th, we will meet at the Faculty Research Commons in the Hunt Library.

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