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The art of writing is something that I at times take for granted. There are too many things to write; emails, papers, reviews of papers, tests, exams, suggested solutions for these tests and exams…and the list goes on. Writing becomes an objective oriented activity than one where the spark of creativity is allowed to blossom and take shape.

The Writer’s Workshop run by Steve Evans, a very accomplished writer and academic, was a refreshing chance to come back to what I call the expressive roots of our discipline. We were asked to express our research through haiku, song and finally drama! This is not a post modern field exercise but a challenging way of distilling your research into the most important points and then giving it a new, freer and more creative voice.

In her plenary presentation, Prof. Jane Broadbent commented on the need to make our work more accessible. She spoke of the performance based research funding that sculpted the current UK system and gave priority to publishing work with impact. This word IMPACT is something that needs to be reconsidered in light of what she said. Does our work as academics really have impact? Does it reach the masses, or does it remain trapped in the passionate circles of a few? Perhaps if we go back to our roots, where writing is a passion, a means of expression and not just another item on the list of things to do for the day, we can begin to make our academic opinions the moots for discussion in more open public fora.

Thank you very much Steve for a very engaging and enjoyable session. I leave it feeling inspired to write more, and carefully consider who I am writing for and how to reach that audience.