Last Thursday while I was having a coffee with a friend in Fribourg, I noticed someone sitting with a sign “Shut Up & Write” next to them. It took a few minutes for my brain to realize what it means… There are Shut Up & Write events happening here in Fribourg!! 🇨🇭

As it had already been a good hour since I was chatting with my friend while we were supposed to go to the library and get some work done, I suggested that we join the event. We joined just on time the 3 persons who were about to start. After introducing ourselves very quickly, the organizer started the timer and here we got it: one full hour of focused work!

Let’s give a bit of context here: what is a Shut Up & Write event ?

Coming from San Francisco since a decade or so, the idea behind such event is very simple: people meeting in a coffee to write together. Not meaning writing together on the same piece, but writing next to each other on whatever you want to write or whatever you want to focus on without being disturbed. In other words: shut up and write for one hour with a good coffee and then, chat and socialize with cool people :)

I’d like to say that it’s the same as going to the gym or to a sports class with other people. Sure you could do some sport at home alone, but having a group of people to motivate you and having a dedicated time for it makes the whole difference.

Because I had read about Shut Up & Write from the Thesis Whisperer blog, I thought this was an academic only thing. I was pleased to realize that it is not. At the session in Fribourg last week, I’ve met a blog writer, a teacher and a social media content editor, and that was just so refreshing :) It seems that this is happening every Thursday morning and I look forward to going again !

As I’ve now discovered from the Shut Up & Write website, this is happening in Geneva, Lausanne, Fribourg, Bern and Zurich ! Just check out the time and locations here.

For more about how these events can help you in your academic life, read more on the Thesis Whisperer and Research Whisperer blogs:

Feel free to go to such session with whatever piece you want to focus on: a thesis chapter, reading a paper, writing a paper, putting together some figures, analyzing some data, writing some reports, etc… If you’re losing your motivation, if you’ve been procrastinating writing your thesis, if you’re feeling lonely writing from home or from the library, give it a try :) No need to feel scared, you won’t show your writing to anyone there, you don’t even have to say on what you work on, people are not here to give feedback or critics, they are here to work on their own thing and to socialize a bit 👍

You could also launch your own Writing Group, just like the University of St. Gallen is having a PhD Writing Groups every Tuesday morning! 🎓


Thanks for having a look at today’s blog post, hoping it helps some of you finding the motivation and the time to write your thesis ! :)

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