This is a blog where POWER Writing Consultants share reflections, resources, and practical ideas related to writing. We hope you find it inspiring and useful in your writing journey.

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April 03, 2014

Organize Your Day Based on Your Biorhythms

By: Nicola L. Ritter, P.O.W.E.R. Consultant


What are biorhythms?  According to dictionary.com, biorhythms are a cyclically recurring pattern of physiological states in an organism or organ, such as alpha rhythm or circadian rhythm; believed by some to affect physical and mental states and behavior. Reflecting on my own biorhythms has been a useful exercise to help...

December 24, 2013


‘Twas the Night Before Finals

By: Margarita (Maggie) Huerta, Ph.D., P.O.W.E.R. Consultant*

Note: This is a parody of the traditional Christmas poem, “‘A Visit from St. Nicholas” (also known as "'Twas the Night Before Christmas") by Clement Clarke Moore, which you can read here: http://www.poetryfoundation.org/poem/171924


‘Twas the night...

December 20, 2013

Science, Academic Writing, and Fun

By: Bárbara Spessato, Ph.D., P.O.W.E.R. Alumna

Postdoctoral fellow at the Universidade Catolica de Pelotas, Brazil

Academic writers. Our ability to make complex concepts, research, and ideas even more complex and difficult to understand always puzzles me. It is usually possible to grasp content and ideas of most manuscripts but oftentimes with...

December 13, 2013

Too Many Ideas, but a Few Words

By: Melika Shirmohammadi, P.O.W.E.R. Consultant


About one year ago, if you happened to see me on the campus bus scrolling up and down on my iPhone screen, you may have thought, “she is on Facebook”. That was not true. I may have been searching the library’s website looking for an article, or surfing Google Scholar in search of a literature review, or exploring other...

November 22, 2013

Thinking about Writing

By: Qian Ji, P.O.W.E.R. Consultant

Photograph credits belong to Gene Huang

When thinking about writing, the first thing which came to my mind was some pictures shared by an engineering Ph.D. student in Dr. Goodson’s advanced writing class. It was in the summer of 2012 and one of the first courses I took in my Ph.D. program. I recall at the end of the semester the young...

November 08, 2013

The P.O.W.E.R. Life Vest
By: Tracey Hodges, P.O.W.E.R. Consultant


Sink or swim. Every new semester poses challenges that have academics questioning their success. One day, we feel as if we are being pulled by the current, barely able to catch our breath. Other days, we feel like a dolphin jumping gracefully in aerobatic stunts, reaching new heights from all our success. The constant ups and downs can be difficult, but thankfully we...

November 04, 2013


Getting Over the Hump and Fixing the Writing Slump!

By: Leah Anderson, P.O.W.E.R. Consultant


Dr. Goodson recently stated in an email that she “hoped we were having a beautiful writing day.” After reading it, I asked myself, “Am I having a beautiful writing day?” My answer was no. I then asked myself, “When was the last time I had a beautiful writing day?” My answer was September 4, 2013. Specific I know, but...

October 25, 2013


More than (Skin-) Deep Practice

By Patricia Goodson, Ph.D., P.O.W.E.R. Director

I confess I didn’t read very much this summer, but when I did I made sure it was worth the effort. I did read three of Mark Buchanan’s books, though. Buchanan writes about the Christian life, mainly; about the Bible and about theology. He also writes poetry – and you can tell he does, just by reading his prose.


But it...

October 17, 2013

Running Taught me Writing

By Mrudula Anne, P.O.W.E.R. Consultant


At the risk of sounding dumb, I am going to be honest and admit that I had not heard of something called a “marathon” or “half-marathon” until a couple of years ago. The only time I used to run for exercise before that was when I ran on a treadmill; I had never run outdoors. The first time I tried running outdoors was to train...

October 08, 2013



I heART journaling:  8 Steps for Getting Started

By Dominique T. Chlup, Ph.D., P.O.W.E.R. Associate Director

Photograph and artwork credits belong to Dominique T. Chlup



Every time the doorbell rang in author Dorothy Parker’s apartment, she famously quipped, “What fresh hell can this be?”


Have you ever had one of those days?  You know the type of day...