Episode #207

Your Writing Practice Fuels Your Pipeline

I am back to working as the primary writing coach in our Navigate Program, and that shift has sparked some new thoughts about writing and academic writing practice.


In today’s episode, I cover everything from defining the components of an enduring writing practice to the role of writing retreats in clearing out your backlog of papers. So tune in to hear new ideas on:

  • Defining and developing a writing practice
  • Why an enduring writing practice is critical for academic success
  • Writing practice vs. writing process vs. writing pipeline
  • Where coaching plays a role in developing a writing practice
  • Tools to unclog a backed-up publication pipeline
  • The importance of writing retreats
  • What to expect from the Spacious Writing Retreat in July


Your writing practice fuels your pipeline. No amount of pipeline mapping or project management skills will move your writing projects forward. So tune in to learn how an enduring writing practice is the key to a flourishing publication pipeline!


What is a Writing Practice for Academics?

A sustainable writing practice for academics looks different than a writing practice for creative writers or novelists. Writing every day is not the answer!

The essential tools of a writing practice for academics look like a pyramid. At the base is the Soaring System, which creates 1-3 hour writing sessions one or twice a week that feel effortless and flow. In the middle are writing sprints, two-week events that catapult a project forward. At the top is writing retreats.

To create an optimized writing session that works for you, it is vital to explore these ideas:

  • How long are writing sessions? 
  • What is the physical environment around where you are writing?
  • What do you need to get started, and how do you start?

Finally, to engineer a writing practice that endures, your writing sessions need to be stimulating. This component will be one of many focuses on the summer writing retreat. Want to learn more? Sign up for our Spacious Retreat happening in July! You can find all the details here.

Key Components of the Spacious Writing Retreat

The Spacious Writing Retreat is happening July 19-24 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The main structure of the retreat will be:

  1. A morning writing practice workshop
  2. A writing block to be spent on a focal project you bring to the retreat
  3. A group coaching session to connect learning and implementing
  4. More writing time


The Spacious Writing Retreat aims to create a writing practice that endures so you can clear your backlog of papers. The final component of the retreat is a 1-on-1 pipeline and practice review with me!

Are you interested in attending a professionally hosted academic writing retreat? Sign up for our Spacious Retreat happening in July! You can find all the details here


“The connection between writing practice and pipeline is important because your writing practice fuels your publication pipeline. You can have a beautifully organized pipeline. You can have all your projects broken down into tasks. You could be good at managing more than one project at a time. You could clear your schedule so that you are participating in the activities that are aligned with your academic mission, but all of those things won’t move your pipeline unless you have a writing practice.” 


“Writing practices for academics looks quite a bit different than writing practice for novel writers, or memoir writers, or other kinds of writing. That’s because academics write from data. Also, academics are juggling many different things. It is many jobs in one – there is teaching, research, service, and mentoring. You have to distinguish urgent from important, and all of that is not great for writing, so we had to design a writing practice in academia that is different than a writing practice for somebody else.”


Cathy has created another summer writing retreat in Ocean Park, San Juan, Puerto Rico! Join us on July 19-24th for our Spacious Writing Retreat. We are accepting reservations now. To learn more and save your spot click 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.
  4. If you would like to hear more from Cathy for free, please subscribe to the weekly newsletter, In the Pipeline, at scholarsvoice.org. It’s a newsletter that she personally writes that goes out once a week with writing and publication tips, strategies, inspiration, book reviews and more..





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