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Professors as Writers: A Self-Help Guide to Productive Wr... and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more

Professors as Writers: A Self-Help Guide to Productive Writing

18 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0913507131
ISBN-10: 091350713X
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Robert Boice received his B.A. degree in the honors program at Michigan State University magna cum laude, and later received the M.A. and Ph.D. degrees from MSU in psychology. He devoted much of his distinguished career to the study and application of techniques for helping faculty to become more productive writers. He served as a Professor of Psychology at SUNY at Stony Brook, NY, and conducted scores of workshops on his and other campuses pioneered numerous techniques to include highly successful post-workshop visitations to help faculty stay on track with their writing programs.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 190 pages
  • Publisher: New Forums Press (March 24, 1990)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 091350713X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0913507131
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.4 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #128,119 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

73 of 73 people found the following review helpful By Melanchthon VINE VOICE on December 16, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Face it, all of us academics would like to think that someday a muse will descend upon us and infuse us with the capability to write the great work in our field without self-doubt, procrastination, etc. Boice shows empirical evidence that demonstrates these hopes are in vain (which is no big surprise to anyone), but even better, he provides the solution: writing is like physical exercise--the more you do it, the easier and more pleasant it becomes--if you write a little bit every day, even if you think it's pointless, at the end of a six month period, you will have 150 pages of writing to edit. It makes sense and it works. He even talks about reasons that people want to resist this truth, and how to trick yourself out of your writer's block. Grad students especially should benefit from the strategies he suggests.
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51 of 51 people found the following review helpful By Rosemary Tyksinski on July 18, 2000
Format: Paperback
If you are writing a dissertation, thesis, or engaged in other regular academic writing this book is a must read. Boice's sage advice is based on years of experience with and (yes, empirical evidence) research on helping academicians produce necessary writing -- regularly. He includes self-assessment questionnaire on writer's block that enables you to target your areas of strength and weakness so you can focus on exactly the areas that hinder your progress. The book is short (180 pp including excellent anotated bibliography). He answers the agonizing questions about why you don't write when you want to and desperately need to write. He discusses, in clear, concise detail, the phenomenology of writing problems, while providing both short- and long-term strategies for ensuring writing productivity that are actually do-able. His writing style is easy, conversational and reassuring. He takes you through his actual consultation process, session by session. Simply stated, the book is just great.
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48 of 50 people found the following review helpful By Mary McKinney on April 27, 2003
Format: Paperback
This is one of the best books out there for academics who need help getting themselves to write. I'm a clinical psychologist who coaches faculty, post-docs and grad students, and this is one of the first books I recommend. Almost all of Boice's prolific body of work is useful - and his suggestions, both in books and journal articles, are backed up by research - this makes his contributions unique in the genre of self-help books for academics.
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31 of 33 people found the following review helpful By Philip Gomez on August 21, 2003
Format: Paperback
This book is fantastic. Just when I thought I'd read it all, I stumbled across this book while surfing the Internet. It is by far the best book I've ever come across to help someone overcome procrastination or any other writing "problem."
The first chapter is a bit overly academic in tone, but the rest is down-to-earth. He does an exceptional job discussing free-writing and clustering; and then he goes on to give further advice regarding how to manage your social and environmental situation to encourage your productivity. His advice works very well -- and it is not just for academic writers.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Roben Torosyan PhD on August 13, 2009
Format: Paperback
I fought against Boice's behavioral structuring but it was pretty funny to read his little dialogues with a similar minded skeptic. I tried the brief, timed daily sessions and found they freed me up rather than made me feel restricted, because over time I saw more pages produced, and had more raw material to work with; didn't have to wait for the long blocks of time.
Things that most helped me:
* Free writing to start, including not even about the material at first
* Only 15-30 minutes/day b/c so difficult to find the big chunks of time
* Keep a log of time put in and check-in weekly w scheduled call
Having reached the end, I'm for the first time more open to sharing rough drafts of ideas before they're ready. "Begin before you're ready" was his point, but I didn't get that, feeling it was too personal to share something so raw. Now I'm not going to think of it as quite as personal--it's not me, those words, because they're not final. Not the only thing I meant to say or have to say. So no criticism of them can really assail me. In fact it's just a work in progress that gets really helped by the mutual conversations. Over time, I'm struck by how memorable Boice's points are, like that one about "externality"-- --the importance of getting writing outside your mind and into other hands. Despite its writing style, I'd grade it an A- for truly helpful content. It helped me go from writing or revising about 25 pages a year to over 250 a year for the past few years.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Rosemary Bannon Tyksinski on October 6, 2005
Format: Paperback
If you are writing a dissertation, thesis, or engaged in other regular academic (or other writing) writing this book is a must read. Boice's sage advice is based on years of experience with and (yes, empirical evidence) research on helping academicians produce necessary writing -- regularly. He includes self-assessment questionnaire on writer's block that enables you to target your areas of strength and weakness so you can focus on exactly the areas that hinder your progress. The book is short (180 pp including excellent anotated bibliography). He answers the agonizing questions about why you don't write when you want to and desperately need to write. He discusses, in clear, concise detail, the phenomenology of writing problems, while providing both short- and long-term strategies for ensuring writing productivity that are actually do-able. His writing style is easy, conversational and reassuring. He takes you through his actual consultation process, session by session (a rare insight and a true bargin). Simply stated, the book is just great.
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