(Re)discover joy in the process of writing

Academic writing is, by nature, nonfiction. Which means some academics can tend to think the only writing they’re good at, is nonfiction.

Storytelling for Academics™ has been created specifically to challenge this idea. And to show academic writers views of their writing and themselves they’ve perhaps never encountered. Ten live-online workshops combine mini-lectures on the craft elements of fiction, with in-session writings ranging across various forms, voices and styles.

By exploring and improving their non-academic writing, participants invariably see their academic writing improve as well.

(Re)discover joy in the process of writing

Academic writing is, by nature, nonfiction. Which means some academics can tend to think the only writing they’re good at, is nonfiction.

Storytelling for Academics™ has been created specifically to challenge this idea. And to show academic writers views of their writing and themselves they’ve perhaps never encountered. Ten live-online workshops combine mini-lectures on the craft elements of fiction, with in-session writings ranging across various forms, voices and styles.

By exploring and improving their non-academic writing, participants invariably see their academic writing improve as well.

(Re)discover joy in the process of writing

Academic writing is, by nature, nonfiction. Which means some academics can tend to think the only writing they’re good at, is nonfiction.

Storytelling for Academics™ has been created specifically to challenge this idea. And to show academic writers views of their writing and themselves they’ve perhaps never encountered. Ten live-online workshops combine mini-lectures on the craft elements of fiction, with in-session writings ranging across various forms, voices and styles.

By exploring and improving their non-academic writing, participants invariably see their academic writing improve as well.

This workshop has been designed for a specific audience.

Are you a researcher, scholar, or teaching professor in a university or higher education institute who would like to reach broader audiences with your written works?

Someone who wants to find writing enjoyable, even when dealing with serious subjects?

Someone who could use positive reinforcement, motivation and community?

Then Storytelling for Academics is for you!

Explore your source materials using different writing styles. And end up delivering great stories, well told.

During this 10 week workshop you will:

  • Actively explore the various craft elements of fiction writing
  • Strengthen your nonfiction writing

  • Explore new forms and styles

  • Write so that you can have your voice heard whenever you so choose, whether that be within or outside academia

  • (Re)discover joy in the process of writing itself and reach richer and more complex end results, both in your academic and non-academic works

  • Make time for your writing in an atmosphere of support and encouragement

  • Learn storytelling skills that will help you transform your source materials into possibilities including essays, talks, poems, screenplays, and stories of fiction or creative non-fiction

Matthew Curlewis

Workshop leader, writer, general creative, Amherst Writers & Artists Affiliate and founder/director of Amsterdam Writers.

In the last few years, I began to find to academics cropping up in my Writers’ Stretch & Tone workshops, which intrigued me. Additionally, it was obvious they were ‘passing my name along’. What about my workshop was appealing to this new audience?

Apparently, for these writers who routinely receive negative criticism of their work, by taking my workshops they were re-engaging with the process of writing. They were finding that writing could be enjoyable, even when dealing with serious subjects. They were finding positive reinforcement. And motivation. And community. All of which was making their writing better – both their academic, and non-academic writing.

“You helped me to rediscover joy in the process of writing itself”

That’s the #1 thing I hear from academics after taking one of my workshops.

Their mindset in general, within academia, is that writing is ‘their job’. It has to be done to deadline. It has to adhere to various conventions, expectations and formalities – and as a result, it’s become to feel like a chore.

In the process of engaging with my Writers’ Stretch & Tone suggestions, I’ve witnessed them buzz with excitement at the pleasure of simply writing without huge expectations. And I’ve witnessed many shift their mindset from ‘writing to achieve a specific result’ to ‘writing first as a process of discovery’. By allowing their writings to explore territories away from purely results-driven pathways – they’ve actually reached richer and more complex end results. Which got me thinking….why don’t I develop a new workshop? One with the specific needs of academics in mind?

This is why I created Storytelling for Academics™.

What your workshop includes:

01

10 live online(2.5 hour) sessions of a processed-based writing workshop.

02

5 mini lectures on the craft elements of fiction. Character, Settings, Plot, Point of View and Theme, with reference to Conflict, Style/Tone, and Genre woven throughout – all in order to loosen up and expand your “palette of writing colours”.

03

In-session writings to multidiscipline-friendly writing suggestions, in every session. Meaning: both science and humanities writers will be challenged and stimulated!

04

Opportunities to share manuscripts and share structured group feedback in two rounds.  First, what is working in your writing?  Second, what could be improved?

05

Support, motivation, and community, in a group limited to nine fellow participants. And opportunities for one on one consultations with Matthew Curlewis.

Here’s what one professor experienced….

I initially approached the workshop with fear and trepidation, not being a writer of fiction. But from the first moment, Matthew created a warm and safe atmosphere (online, no less), and I put pen to paper to his ingenious prompts—never to look back.

In the Writers’ Stretch & Tone workshop I made a major breakthrough in my writing project, and looked forward to that special evening of the week when I would meet with fellow writers, each of whom became a source of inspiration as we wrote, read, and listened to one another’s work. Highly recommended for everyone who would like to try their hand at writing; prepare to be surprised at what you may be capable of.

Leyla Neyzi – Research Fellow/Leverhulme Visiting Professorship, University of Glasgow

Upcoming workshop dates

Storytelling for Academics™ is a 10 week, 2.5 hour live online workshop for researchers, scholars and teaching professors who want to (re)discover joy in the process of writing itself.

Wednesdays

Europe + Americas
time zones-friendly

10 Wednesdays: MAR 15 – MAY 17
19:00 – 21:30h (Amsterdam – CET)
1.00 – 3.30 pm (New York – EST)
10.00 am – 12.30 pm (Los Angeles – PST)

I initially approached the workshop with fear and trepidation, not being a writer of fiction. But from the first moment, Matthew created a warm and safe atmosphere (online, no less), and I put pen to paper to his ingenious prompts—never to look back.

In the Writers’ Stretch & Tone workshop I made a major breakthrough in my writing project, and looked forward to that special evening of the week when I would meet with fellow writers, each of whom became a source of inspiration as we wrote, read, and listened to one another’s work. Highly recommended for everyone who would like to try their hand at writing; prepare to be surprised at what you may be capable of.

Leyla Neyzi – Research Fellow/Leverhulme Visiting Professorship, University of Glasgow

Upcoming workshop dates

Storytelling for Academics™ is a 10 week, 2.5 hour live online workshop for researchers, scholars and teaching professors who want to (re)discover joy in the process of writing itself.

Wednesdays

Europe + Americas
time zones-friendly

10 Wednesdays: MAR 15 – MAY 17
19:00 – 21:30h (Amsterdam – CET)
1.00 – 3.30 pm (New York – EST)
10.00 am – 12.30 pm (Los Angeles – PST)

Storytelling for Academics™

University or Institution
per person

€650.00

incl. 21% VAT

Storytelling for Academics™

Self paying
per person

€545.00

incl. 21% VAT

Storytelling for Academics invites both:

Individual registrations from scholars and teachers interested in workshop participation with (international) writers from different academic fields and disciplines.

Group registrations – either from single institutions, or from groups of colleagues who work across a number of different institutions.

Sliding scale options also available.  Please enquire at info@amsterdamwriters.com

The world needs to hear what academics have to say; perhaps now more than ever.

At a time when liberal arts courses are being scrapped or defunded, universities need to justify that their humanities and social science departments are worth keeping. A solution? Storytelling for Academics is a justification all by itself, because it helps to provide universities with ‘engaged scholars’ and ‘public intellectuals’ – scholars who, because they are actively engaging in non-formal styles of academic writing, end up being more ‘public facing’. The workshop helps to reassert liberal arts values and also provides a way of attracting more students to study liberal arts, because they will see their professors doing interesting work exploring new territories both within and outside of academia.

A structured workshop forces academics to make time to look at their writing afresh, since most ‘never have enough time for writing’ due to the demands of their teaching schedules and/or research and writing deadlines.

A structured workshop forces academics to make time to look at their writing afresh, since most ‘never have enough time for writing’ due to the demands of their teaching schedules and/or research and writing deadlines.

Young female professor studying and writing in the university library.

While academic writing in general is highly competitive, Amsterdam Writers workshops operate differently. Excellence is achieved through a supportive approach. The academics who have worked with me to date have expressed surprise and relief to work in an atmosphere of support and encouragement, in place of the negative criticism they can receive within academia. And to experience that in a community of shared interest which, invariably, also turns into a ‘community of support’. It is frequently the case that writers I have worked with stay in touch with each other long after any particular workshop has run its course.

Many academics get used to writing during their undergraduate studies and begin their training writing research papers. But along the way, few actually take anything like a creative writing class or a fiction writing workshop. Consequently, while many might possess fascinating source materials, the storytelling skills they have might be great for academia, but less great when applied to other forms. What are some of the writing craft skills one should be familiar with in order to deliver ‘a great story, well told?’ What is meant by narrative arcs and character development? How do we set up and deliver dramatic tension? How should they go about repurposing their source materials into a short story? Poems, a novel or a play?

According to participants…

Matthew is an inspiring teacher: kind, enthusiastic and patient.  His own creativity and passion coupled with a sincere desire to enable others is obvious in his teaching.

Christy Collins – Author of ‘The End of Seeing’ and ‘The Price of Two Sparrows’

Matthew is an inspiring teacher: kind, enthusiastic and patient.  His own creativity and passion coupled with a sincere desire to enable others is obvious in his teaching.

Christy Collins – Author of ‘The End of Seeing’ and ‘The Price of Two Sparrows’

Transform your writing, and your approach to writing itself.

These days modern, academic writing is starting to transform. More academics are venturing further afield with their writing skills and techniques. They’re exploring new narratives, and using different voices to tell their stories – leading to more source materials becoming ‘great stories, well told’. At Amsterdam Writers, it’s thrilling to feel part of this process. Curious? Then sign up to one of our workshops and explore the unexpected places your writing might take you.