Zen and the Art of Academic Writing

Course 2024-19


Date: 29.05.2024, 9:00 - 13:00

Venue: online

Trainer: Dr. Pranay Sanklecha


Notizbuch und Kaffeetasse

Do you struggle with establishing a writing habit?

Do you find it difficult to get started?

Do you find it difficult to stay focused?

Do you have anxiety around writing?

Do you have a problem with the “inner critic”?

Do you worry that what you’re writing is terrible?

If your answer to at least one of those questions at least some of the time is yes, then this workshop will help you.

The workshop is based on the premise that there are two types of writing problems: technical and psychological.
Technical problems are where you either don’t know something or can’t do something. For example, if you’re writing a philosophy paper on Spinoza, and you’ve never read Spinoza, your problem is that you lack the necessary knowledge to successfully carry out your writing project. For further example, if you’re writing a play and you aren’t good at writing dialogue, your problem is that you lack the necessary skill to successfully carry out your writing project.

In this workshop, we won’t address any technical problems. Instead, we will focus exclusively on psychological problems.
Psychological problems are when you are blocked from writing or are struggling with writing because of something to do with your inner life. For example, I am sometimes terrified of writing authentically because then I have nowhere to hide if someone doesn’t like what I wrote. For further example, sometimes I struggle with a writing project because I need it to be “perfect” and this need ends up paralysing me.

We will take a step back to figure out how and where these problems arise and we will learn and practice using tools that can help you address those problems. By the end of those workshop, you will have learned things that will immediately help you to write with more freedom and less despair.


To book your place in this workshop (course number 2024-19), please fill out this registration form.


A photo of Dr. Pranay Sanklecha.

Trainer: Dr. Pranay Sanklecha

I’m Pranay Sanklecha. At 15, I was admitted to read PPE at Oxford. Since then I’ve been a schoolteacher, a commodities trader, a writer, a cook, a restaurant owner and, most recently, a professor of philosophy.
As an academic philosopher, I worked in political and moral philosophy, on topics such as climate justice, intergenerational justice, individual and collective responsibility and, most recently, on the meaning of life and the search for purpose.
I’ve published extensively in peer-reviewed journals and I’ve also edited scholarly volumes for university presses (e.g. CUP). I’ve also written for a wide variety of popular publications on a number of topics. And I’ve supervised many students in their writing projects. All that experience, the failures as much as the successes, have given me both an understanding of the problems people face in their writing projects and the skills necessary to help them overcome those problems.