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As an academic life and writing coach, my goal is to give you personalized strategies, advice, and support to help you achieve your work goals without sacrificing your personal wellbeing and family life. I will help you shape a career and life that are consistent with your values and passions.

Academic Life

The pressures to publish, get grants, and teach and mentor have been heightened as competition for academic jobs and tenure-track positions has grown. Further, as more women than ever before are now graduating from college and then moving on to receive PhDs, and as men attempt to become more fully involved in family life, work-family balance is at the forefront of many academics’ minds. Junior scholars can be overwhelmed with the demands of getting a job, and getting tenure. As academics get more senior,  opportunities and requests come your way, but deciding which to say yes to can be confusing. Throw family relationships into the mix, and it isn’t surprising that many of us feel overwhelmed, stressed, and like an imposter, and that we aren’t really doing any of our many roles – partner, parent, friend, scholar, teacher – well. Coaching around work-life balance can help you identify your goals and values and find strategies to align your time with those.

Topics:

  • Saying No
  • Choosing the Right Kind of Service
  • Accountability Structures that Work
  • Balancing Work and Family
  • Picking Friends and Colleagues Carefully
  • Negating Rejection
  • Scheduling Self-Care and Fun
  • Not Working (i.e. Binge-watching, Karoake, Reading Novels) Without Guilt

Writing Semantics

Some people think that good writing cannot be taught. This is not true, and in many cases, scholars who get negative feedback on their writing from peer reviewers or mentors have never been taught how to write for an academic audience. Further, when scholars do get feedback on their writing, it is usually “fix this” or “too wordy”, or if they are lucky, a coauthor or mentor will fix it for them but will not involve them in the editing process. Thus, scholars are rarely taught how to actually fix their most basic grammatical and stylistic errors. Hands-on coaching can help a scholar improve their writing, and thus increase their productivity and publication record as less time is spent revising grammatical and style errors for journals, and more time is spent doing good scholarship.

Topics:

  • Writing Like You Mean It
  • Reading It Out Loud
  • Co-Writing
  • Cutting Needless Words
  • Reading Your Paper Like the Reviewer

Writing Process

Even if you are an incredible writer, you still have to find the time to write. Finding the time, using that time, and keeping accountable are important aspects of the writing process. The distractions to academic writing, the one activity that most often advances academic careers, have never been higher. There is a constant flow of email from administrators, colleagues and students, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are a click away, and enticing news articles and blogs are shared everywhere. Further, if email is out of control, your space is distracting, and you haven’t set appropriate boundaries, writing time can be eaten up with “productive procrastination” in the forms of emails to colleagues, phone calls to schedule a child’s appointment, and talking with a student at your door. Coaching around the writing process focuses on strategies directly related to writing such as writing groups, but also strategies related to productivity in general.

Topics:

  • Controlling Your Email and Organizing Your Space so You Can Write
  • Writing and Accountability Groups
  • Avoiding Perfectionism
  • Scheduling Writing and Write On Site

Contact Claire to set up an appointment to discuss individual coaching.

“I’ve been following Claire’s blog for a few years now and find myself excitedly waiting for her next post because, as a junior faculty member, I’ve learned so much from Claire as it pertains to my writing as well as facilitating my graduate student’s writing growth. Claire has a unique approach to writing and teaching writing – it is clearly very effective! I can’t wait to attend one of her writing retreats, as I know I’ll gain new skills, increase my writing efficiency and productivity, and also meet others in attendance!”
-Tenure-track Assistant Professor, Research University