Writing with style (or how to vanquish Zombie nouns): a masterclass

Pick up any guide to effective writing, and what will you find? Probably some version of the same advice that Strunk and White offered in the 1950s: engage your reader’s attention through examples, illustrations and anecdotes; use clear, precise language to express complex ideas; write with conviction, passion, and verve. Pick up a standard academic article, legal brief, or policy document, and what will you find? Impersonal, stodgy, jargon-laden prose that ignores or defies most if not all of the principles listed above. In this lively masterclass, international writing expert Helen Sword will discuss the elements that make for an engaging piece of writing, and you will be invited to test those principles against your own practice. Please bring along one of your reasons for decision (preferably printed out in hard copy) and come prepared to put your writing through a workout!

Helen Sword
International expert on academic, professional, and creative writing

Professor Helen Sword is a scholar, poet and award-winning teacher whose recent books include Stylish Academic Writing (Harvard 2012), The Writer’s Diet (Chicago 2016) and Air & Light & Time & Space: How Successful Academics Write (Harvard 2017). She is a Professor of Humanities at the University of Auckland, a research affiliate in the Centre for Arts and Social Transformation, and the recipient of several major research and teaching awards. Her popular writing workshops have taken her to more than 100 universities, conferences and institutes on every continent except Antarctica. See her website (www.helensword.com) for links to her books, her digital poetry and the Writer’s Diet test, a free diagnostic tool for writers.


Jun 11 2021


11:15 am - 1:30 pm

Local Time

  • Timezone: America/New_York
  • Date: Jun 10 2021
  • Time: 9:15 pm - 11:30 pm