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Shut-Up & Write/Work

What is a Shut-Up & Write event?

A shut-up & writework meetup is an excuse for researchers, PhD students and whoeven needs it to gather in a room to do some work while being unreachable. Nobody knows where you are, nobody can come look for you!

Do you actually need to take part in these events to focus and work? Pfft!

I don’t personally have to take part in these events to focus, but after having participated in the Helen Kara PhD Writing Intensive Workshop I started to understand why these events are so powerful and push people to work a lot more than they usually do.
In a normal day at the office, I will write a bit, do some admin, get caught up in some interesting discussion, go back to writing a bit more, have an unexpected meeting with a student, etc…
In a Shut-Up & WriteWork event I usually get betweeen 3 and 5 hours of pure, uninterrupted work. Proof of this is my beautiful screenshot from my Forest.app (not a sponsor unfortunately) that tracks my phone usage (or rather the time spent off my phone) by planting trees accordingly.

Humble brag

As you can see, I worked (and stayed off my phone) for a whopping 4 hours 49 minutes, and got some serious amount of work done.

Ok, this event seems to be working for you. But how does it actually work?

Well, there is no secret formula: you still need to be the one that decides to do some work. But if the motivation is there, the structure of the day will definitely help you stay on track. The day is divided using a 30-10 solution, where every 30 minutes of silent work, there are 10 minutes of break, coffee, chit chat and whatever suits your needs. Nobody is going to check if you are actually working, or how much work you have done, but just being in a room where everybody is silently working is pretty inspiring and motivating.

Why do you keep referring to is as writework?

This is because the original even was not only meant to gather people willing to work, but aimed to focus on word production. During the day, people were encouraged to write without thinking too much, and produce as much content as possible, keeping the editing phases to a later stage. While this is extremely productive, it is not sustainable on a bi-weekly basis (that the Shut-Up & WriteWork sessions are aiming at). For this reason, this version of the shut-up & write event aims at just working: whether you’re writing, reading, referencing nobody is going to judge you.

Ok ok, when’s the next event?

All the details for the next Shut-Up & WriteWork are written below!

Shut-Up & WriteWork (2)
18th of April 2019
9:30am (10am start) to 5pm
Curzon Building, Room C204


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