Bridge and Gather

Thoughts on words, writing, community, and imagination

A few favorite resources for academic writers and editors

This is my personal list of favorite writing ideas, tools, and techniques — resources I have learned from, admire, and return to. Please email me (or comment on this post) to share your favorite writing resources!

Language skills

Tools, templates, and self-paced online courses in academic writing skills from Dr. Crystal Herron at Redwood Ink

A variety of resources available on Dr. Letitia Henville’s website, Short Is Hard, including her online course on Becoming a Better Editor of Your Own Work

Guidance on conscious, inclusive language in academic and science writing at the ACS Inclusivity Style Guide

Writing and publishing skills

Academic writing coaching, workshops, and online resources from Dr. Malini Devadas at MD Writing & Editing, including an upcoming free webinar on “How to write, submit, and publish regularly

For those writing an academic book, the Book Proposal Accelerator course and associated online resources created by Dr. Laura Portwood-Stacer at ManuscriptWorks

A series of videos on Practical Strategies for Pain-Free Academic Writing, from a writing workshop by Dr. Alexis Shotwell

Technical skills

Lists of academic editors for hire, including BIPOC editor directories, along with BIPOC and white editors volunteering time to support Black and/or Indigenous scholars at the Academic Editing Circle 

Tips, tricks, and training on how use Microsoft Word more easily and skillfully from Adrienne Montgomerie at Editing in Word

Additional training in Microsoft Word, PerfectIt, and Endnote from Cadman Training Services by Dr. Hilary Cadman

Resources on diversifying reference lists: 
Tools for focus and scheduling:

Research and ideas

Books that have shaped my approach to academic writing groups:
Books that have shaped my approach to editing academic writing:


— notes —

[1] I am aware of Dr. Pinker’s reactionary politics. I also found that reading the first half of this particular book on language changed my editing eye radically for the better.

Writing in good company

You are invited to join a weekly online writing group for early-career professors, postdocs, graduate students, and others writing academic- and research-adjacent work. I am calling this group Writing in Good Company.

I have designed this group to support especially women, people of color, first-generation Americans, and first-generation postgraduate students, who frequently do not receive adequate cultural and institutional support for their careers. Everyone is welcome. At this time, there is no cost to attend.

The next session will begin in the week of May 6, 2024, and run for 8 weeks (to the end of June). 

If you’re ready to join in, click this link to fill out a short sign-up form. 

Writing in Good Company is loosely organized around the concept of academic writing accountability groups, or WAGs. (Read more about WAGs at the Washington University Postdoc Society writing accountability group page or in the paper on Intentional and Unintentional Benefits of Minority Writing Accountability Groups published by Trends in Microbiology.) At Writing in Good Company, instead of rigid ideas of what constitutes “accountability,” the goal is for each participant to learn what kinds of practices support them individually as a writer, scholar, and career scientist. This learning will take place through practice, reflection, and sharing.

Each weekly meeting will provide a quiet, structured space for dedicated writing time. The only requirement is to show up as often as possible. There will be options to participate (or not) in brief weekly check-ins on anxiety levels and accountability goals; to join a writing-silently room or a chat-and-ask-questions-as-needed room; and to join a room dedicated to people of the global majority. There will also be time to ask and answer questions and share resources about the writing side of academic life.

The group will be held on Zoom at a time arranged based on the current members’ schedules and re-evaluated for every 8-week session. It will be organized and hosted by Kyra Freestar, of Bridge Creek Editing and the Academic Editing Circle

We will begin with the following goals: 

  • To increase your writing productivity
  • To increase your writing awareness, confidence, and satisfaction
  • To meet and build connections with other early-career academic writers
  • To build the skills and confidence to lead your own academic writing groups in the future 

We will begin with the following group agreements:

  • We focus on our own and each other’s strengths and believe in each other’s success.
  • We participate (or not) in the ways that work for us.
  • We take care of ourselves. Stretch, eat, drink, take a break, etc.
  • We give each other the benefit of the doubt and ask questions.
  • We keep confidentiality: Learning goes, stories stay. 

To learn more or sign up, click here to fill out a short survey

To meet Kyra and ask questions directly, click here to sign up for a 20-minute Zoom call

To recommend this group to others — friends, colleagues, and colleagues you’d like to be better friends with in the future! — please send them the link to this page or the link to the online sign-up form itself. 

You are always of course welcome to email me, at, at any time.

I look forward to hearing from you!

Kyra Freestar headshot

For Black and/or Indigenous scholars

Find pro bono editing support at the
Academic Editing Circle