Gerund Addiction and Word Repetition–Two More Scourges

Faithful readers know that I have several posts on different kinds of writing tics that plague many academic writers.  These include list addiction, dyad addiction, and cheap adjectives. There are two more writing tics that I’ve come to identify: gerund … Continue reading

Banish These Words, 2016 Edition

Every season I note a new batch of trite, overused words cropping up in job and grant documents. I’ve already written about some of the most critical to banish from your vocabulary here, and here. Here is the newest set … Continue reading

A Big Week at The Professor Is In: My Book Comes Out!

The day finally arrived!   On Tuesday the book came out and The Professor Is In: The Essential Guide to Turning Your Ph.D. into a Job was officially launched onto the world. 480 pages, half of it newly updated and … Continue reading

Adjectives Are Not Arguments, Part I

It is time that all of you grasped a simple yet profound truth of academic writing: adjectives are not arguments. Simply repeating the words: complex multivalent/multidirectional/multiplicitous unique diasporic transnational intersectional over and over in your documents, does not suggest that … Continue reading

The Top 5 Mistakes Women Make in Academic Settings

[Repost from the TPII archives] I frequently offer the workshop:  “Yes You Can!  Women and Graduate School.” It’s a workshop I led quite a few times in different forms, formally and informally, over the course of my years in academia. … Continue reading

The Worst Job Letter Ever Written (Not really…)

A few months ago one of my clients, after completing work with me on her job letter, ruefully sent along the original version of the letter that she had been using the previous year.  She wrote, “I’ve attached a copy … Continue reading

What is Assertiveness, for Women?

(Friday Post Category: Yes, You Can: Women in Academia) I get so frustrated when I see the female students and colleagues I work with sabotage themselves and undermine their own authority and effectiveness because of an inability to be assertive. … Continue reading