From WordPerfect to Microsoft Word: Macros, AutoCorrect, and Quick Parts

When I was in high school, a lo-o-o-o-o-ng time ago, I took a course in WordPerfect. I learned that program from the inside out. I had keyboard shortcuts and macros for EVERYTHING. I never typed anything longhand. Using that program was like being a court reporter. Conveniently enough, I worked my way through undergrad as […]

21 Hacks for Word for Writers

Many of us use the same medium to craft our documents – Microsoft Word. Few of us know how to tap into its full potential as a tool of the trade. Here are 21 essential hacks for any writer working in Word. File –> Options –> Display 1) Show / hide white spaces between pages. When […]

Lessons Learned from Writing as a Team

I spent the week of February 23, 2015 at the National Conservation Training Center facilitating a team who are re-writing a government handbook that has not been updated for 20 years. The handbook provides guidance to employees of the United States Fish and Wildlife Service for how to implement one section of one congressional act, […]

Writing as a Team

Government agencies write as teams for many reasons. A project might be too large for one individual to manage alone. Or the agency may wish to tap into the expertise of many different people, all working for different offices. Writing as a team will always be a challenge. But done well, it can be an […]

In Praise of Index Cards

When I was in high school (and I’m not telling you how many years – decades? – ago that was), I learned to write research papers using note cards. We bought a big metal ring and used a single-hole punch on the upper left hand corner of a pack of 3×5 index cards. Voilà! A […]

Writing as an Introvert

2014 was the Year of the Introvert. It seems like every time I turned around there was another podcast, book, or infographic published about how many introverts are in the workplace, how powerful their untapped potential is, and how much better the world would be if we could teach leaders and extroverts how to collaborate […]

Stop Procrastinating and Start Writing – Today!

One reason government biologists struggle to write is because they’re faced with large writing projects that seem impossible to wrap their minds around. And because the project as a whole is just too big, too scary, too overwhelming, the tendency is to put it out of one’s mind completely. It’s akin to a fight or […]