Exercise to help develop your writer’s voice

Can you hear me?

The writer’s voice. For me it’s the holy grail of academic writing. I always look to Pat Thomson’s blog for advice on this topic and also just to draw inspiration from the way that she writes and really takes control of her subject. The writer’s voice is how position yourself in the text that you […]

Are you running on empty with a leaky battery?

battery low

Although it seems like it, this post is not about exercise – check through to the end to see why. I was tired. All the time. My mind was a kind of haze, especially when I wanted to think about writing. I would go to bed early thinking that I could recharge my batteries and […]

Literature Review Bias: do you have too much or not enough?

literature review loaded die

Bias in the literature review is common and has obvious negative connotations. If you are biased, then you are not fairly representing the literature. To me, this is to be one of the biggest problems facing writers and my 1:1 clients. I think if you understand bias in the literature review properly, or at least […]

How to annoy your supervisor

annoy supervisor literature review

So let’s get one thing straight. Your supervisor is there to help you and they want you to succeed. However, if they are stressed or annoyed with you, the chances of you getting the best help you can are reduced. I’m not saying that you are the only thing that is going to annoy your […]

Selfish Lit Review Karma

lit review karma

We all know the general principles of Karma, right? If we help somebody else we will get help back in return. The same is obviously true for writing, if we help our peers to write better then they will help us when we need extra guidance and support. This is all well and good but, […]

Organisation: The age old procrastination tool


Nearly everyone I speak to who’s doing the literature review seems to have a lot on their plate. They have so much to do that they are rarely every doing one thing at a time. Let’s face it, the literature review on its own is quite has lots of different facets to it. There’s the […]

Avoiding the blank screen of death

blank screen

I’ve been undertaking a number of big writing projects recently. It’s funny how nearly 3 years after starting this blog about academic writing how many of my habits have changed… and how some have not changed so much! I’m writing this because I noticed recently how much of an aversion I have to the blank […]

Write something different

Write something different

This post is related to last weeks post about listening to audiobooks. It occurred to me recently how much this blog has helped me in my academic writing. I can’t say how much it has contributed to the quality, but it has certainly helped with the techniques and the motivation of getting going with writing. […]

Are audiobooks the key to better writing?

Young man listening to audiobook

Strange question I know. But even stranger is what I noticed after I got an Audible subscription for Christmas. I’ve been listening to audiobooks non-stop since. It’s pretty addictive. Sometimes it’s a nice change to listen to a book instead of reading. It’s more convenient too. You can do it on the commute to work, […]

Free writing or base jumping?

lit review base jumping

I am an advocate of free writing.   Why?   Because I’ve done it and it’s worked for me. I’ve also talked to a lot of people who have used it effectively.   However, just because it is effective does not mean it is not potentially dangerous or damaging to your writing efforts. A revolver […]