Episode #199

Book Recommendations For The New Year

Welcome to the final podcast episode of 2023! Today, I wanted to connect the podcast’s focus on professional development, project management skills, and writing practice development to holiday gift giving. Whether you are searching for the perfect gift for a colleague, graduate student, friend, or family member, my shortlist of book reviews has you covered!


Tune in as I share my five favorite books I read this year. A mix of fiction and non-fiction, each book involves academia on some level and has value as pleasure reading and professional connection. Finally, I close the episode by previewing what to expect from Scholar’s Voice in 2024. Get a sneak peek of new events on the horizon and what I will be focusing on in the New Year. 

Fiction Books I Recommend

Both of these novels are by my favorite authors! No matter which of their books you choose, it will be great! However, I selected my top two choices with stories of professional challenges, personal development, and perseverance.

  1. Lady Tan’s Circle of Women by Lisa See – This is a historical fiction novel based on one of the few female Chinese medicine doctors in the 1500s. The empowering story unveils how she struggled to reconcile societal expectations with her vocation to help others. 
  2. The Diamond Eye by Kate Quinn – Another historical fiction book, The Diamond Eye follows a high-ranking sharpshooter in the Russian army. But before her military career, she wrote her dissertation and worked as a librarian. 


Some honorable mentions of my top fiction reads that didn’t make the shortlist include Demon Copperhead by Barbara Kingsolver and Book Lovers by Emily Henry. 


Nonfiction Books I Recommend

  1. Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown – This book is about simplifying things down and focusing on one thing so that you can get better at that one thing. Simple is better. It is more impactful. Essentialism is a huge tenet of the Navigate program, and the teachings in McKeown’s novel will connect to academics, business owners, and executives. 
  2. Off the Clock: Feel Less Busy While Getting More Done by Laura Vanderkam – This a quick, easy read that explains the perception of time and memory. If you feel there isn’t enough time in the day or your time isn’t your own, this book will offer valuable insight. 
  3. Making Time to Write: How to Resist the Patriarchy and Take Control of Your Academic Career Through Writing by Cathy Mazak – Of course, I needed to include my book too! It details many things I discuss on the podcast, including how to take control of your academic career through writing. 


An honorable mention in the nonfiction category is The Slow Professor by Maggie Berg and Barabra Seeber. It is available on audible and genuinely gave me a different perspective. 

What to Expect in 2024

We are putting all of our focus and energy into the Navigate program! Three cohorts will be available in 2024, with enrollment dates in January, May, and August. We will also continue offering a second round of Navigate to program graduates who want to develop their skills further and receive additional coaching.


The Spacious Writing Retreat is back again next year! We will be gathering in San Juan, Puerto Rico from July 19 to 24. This retreat will be intimate, with limited spaces available. I will share more details in February. To stay up-to-date on all pre-enrollments, visit the Scholar’s Voice website



“I want to share my favorite books with you. These books have an academic connection and a professional connection so I think you all will be interested in reading them too!”



“For 2024 things at Scholar’s Voice are getting simpler! This year we closed some programs and I want to give a big shout out to everyone who did our alumni program and any past participants of Amplify and Elevate. We didn’t cut them because they were bad programs, we just needed to focus on what has a bigger impact and that is Navigate. We went simpler in honor of essentialism and to deliver the best coaching and methodology possible to academics.”


We’ve opened the waitlist for our next cohort of Navigate: Your Writing Roadmap®. Check out the program details and get on the waitlist  here.  




  1. Our 12-week Navigate: Your Writing Roadmap® program helps tenure-track womxn and nonbinary professors to publish their backlog of papers so that their voice can have the impact they know is possible. Get on the waitlist here!
  2. Cathy’s book, Making Time to Write: How to Resist the Patriarchy and Take Control of Your Academic Career Through Writing is available in print! Learn how to build your career around your writing practice while shattering the myths of writing every day, accountability, and motivation, doing mindset work that’s going to reshape your writing, and changing academic culture one womxn and nonbinary professor at a time. Get your print copy today or order it for a friend here!
  3. Want to train with us for free on your campus? Now you can when you recommend our Scholar’s Voice Faculty Retreats to a decision-maker on your campus! Download the brochure with the retreat curriculum and both in-person and online retreat options here.







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