Texas Tech University

Women Faculty Writing Progam

Participants' reflections from Fall 2015 TTU Women Faculty Writing Program

"This has been a wonderful and productive experience. I have already submitted a paper for publication and have another project well on the way. That would not have happened without the [writing] group"

"This has been a really supportive experience. Thank you!"

"I really enjoy this group! It is so helpful to dedicate time to writing."

Women Faculty Writing Program at TTU

Inspired by the successful Women Faculty Writing Program developed by the Campus Writing Program at Indiana University (see http://inside.indiana.edu/features/videos/2015-07-16-female-faculty-writing-group.shtml%20), TTU will be offering Women Faculty Writing Groups during the 2015-2016 year. Sponsored by The President's Gender Equity Council, Women's Studies Program and the University Writing Center, the groups are designed to better address the needs of women faculty as they write for publication, and by extension, for promotion and tenure.

Core Principles

The groups are founded upon two basic principles: 1) daily writing produces better quality work while also minimizing stress; and 2) group accountability helps reinforce motivation. These strategies can be especially difficult to implement without some external structure and support. In order to help you integrate these skills into your writing practice, we provide weekly writing-based workshops that focus on the special needs of academic women writers.

Structure of the Groups

Each writing group runs for three hours weekly, divided as follows:

Group discussion (first 30 mins): This will be facilitated by a faculty facilitator and/or a University Writing Center staffer who will discuss writing and motivational strategies and allow each member of the group to share their progress since the last meeting and set goals for structured writing time.

Structured writing time (remaining 2+ hours): All members of the group will spend the remaining two hours of the session working on their individual projects. While this time will be focused on individual work, the facilitator(s) and/or other members of the writing group will be nearby to answer any questions and offer support.

Participants

Participants will

  • commit to regular attendance for the semester
  • keep a record of their goals and progress
  • provide facilitators with ongoing feedback about the program

Group Facilitators

Group Facilitators will

  • lead a short discussion/workshop at the beginning of each session
  • facilitate group discussion of goals, strategies, and long-term writing plans
  • help participants to remain on-task (and away from e-mail, Facebook, YouTube, or other distractions)

List of Possible Topics for Full-Group Discussion

  • Training yourself to write every day
  • Productive goal-setting strategies.
  • Types of revision and feedback (structural, surface-level, etc.)
  • Balancing teaching/writing/service
  • Strategies for dealing with writer's block and rejected projects
  • Eliminating the "imposter syndrome"

Motivation and Participation

In these writing groups, punctuality is more than just a gesture of courtesy towards your facilitator. Committing to attend your sessions every week during the allotted time helps you to protect that time. Another foundation of these writing groups is group interaction and support. The first section of each session is set aside for the discussion of writing strategies and the sharing of personal goals and progress. When you arrive late, you may still have the ability to share your thoughts and receive advice, but you have missed the opportunity to listen to your other group members and offer support. This leads to a one-sided relationship and is a strain on the group as a whole.

We realize that weather, travel, and parking regulations can make things difficult, but please take your commitment to the group seriously and make arrangements that allow you to reliably arrive on time. Please remember that the writing groups are competitive‚ÄĒparticipants that are repeatedly tardy or absent will not be selected to continue in future semesters.

Preparation for Week 1 Meeting

We all bring our own talents and strategies to the writing process; we all know a lot about writing. Nevertheless, writing is not effortless. For the first week of meetings, we ask that you come prepared to describe your current writing project (let's stick to one project per person for time's sake) in 2 minutes. Our meeting spaces are not equipped with computers, so please bring your laptop to each meeting.

Contact Information

Elizabeth Sharp: Elizabeth.sharp@ttu.edu

Caroline Bishop: Caroline.bishop@ttu.edu

Kristin Messuri: Kristin.messuri@ttu.edu

Charlotte Dunham: Charlotte.dunham@ttu.edu

President's Gender Equity Council