Starting and Maintaining Writing Groups. Nicolette hylan Matthew price The Graduate Writing Center [email protected] Graduate Writing Center. One-on-one consultations All types of writing All stages of the writing process To schedule, see the Center’s website:
Starting and Maintaining Writing Groups
The Graduate Writing Center
Discuss the benefits of writing groups
Offer advice on how to start/maintain writing groups
Give you strategies and concrete tools that will help you make progress in/with groups
(Tentatively) form writing groups
Have the company and support of your peers, many of whom are facing similar challenges
Hold you more accountable for meeting deadlines
Offer fresh eyes and perspectiveson various aspects of your writing/writing process
Expand your available resources (sources, ideas, styles of writing)
1.What are your goals?
2. How big should the group be? (Recommended 4-6 people to start.)
3. When can you meet? Where? How often? How long?
List 5-10 things that describe the ideal writing group situation (including things we haven’t covered).
For a writing group to work successfully everyone needs to . . .
List of 5-10 things that might hinder a writing group situation—what have been your experiences in the past?
How might you address some of these things?
1. If you haven’t written anything, discuss your pre-writing activities or any obstacles that are hindering your process.
2. Offer feedback and talk about how it has helped the evolution of your writing.
3. Discuss future plans for the group meeting. For example, you can choose a writing issue to discuss together (i.e. drafting/ proof-reading, footnotes, etc.).
1. Provide a summary and goal(s) for your writing before the meeting.
2. Explain your biggest concern(s).
3. Start with a brief and overarching feedback list. Be clear about what feedback would be most helpful. Identify specific areas of concern.
4. Be realistic and understanding.
Negative Feedback: “I really dislike the middle section. I have no idea what you’re going for there.”
SupportiveFeedback: “I’m completely persuaded by the first section, but I’m a bit lost in the second. Could you say a bit more about that argument?”
Imprecise: “It’s just not working.”
Specific: “On page four, I think you are conflating two ideas. They seem to be nicely separated on page three—perhaps you can clarify the difference?”
“Your topic sentence doesn’t seem to work as well here because it doesn’t align with the rest of the paragraph.”
Give feedback based on your reader’s intended audience:
“Would your audience understand this term? Does it need clarification?”
“Is this technical diction necessary for a conference presentation?”
Form three groups: Hard Sciences, Social Sciences, Humanities
Please feel welcome to visit the Graduate Writing Center for an individual consultation on your writing projects. Even if you haven’t yet begun to write (and are maybe wondering how to start) we’re happy to talk to you. To schedule an appointment, please visit our website.