Princeton Writes seeks to foster an environment that values and celebrates writing at its best and most diverse. Initiatives include an essay contest for members of Princeton’s academic professional, administrative, and support staffs; a celebration of student writing drawn from undergraduate publications and performance groups; dinnertime roundtables geared to undergraduates and led by authors, journalists, scholars, and other practitioners that examine the craft of writing; and a symposium on communication, Connect: Harnessing the Power of Words.

Essay Contestants Fêted


Princeton Writes honored those who entered its second annual staff essay contest at a celebratory reception at Maclean House on June 16. Before a beaming crowd of family, friends, and colleagues, the winner of this year's Princeton Writes Prize, Bryant Blount, and honorable mention recipients April Armstrong, Violette Chamoun, and Brian Mondschein accepted their certificates, along with autographed copies of On Writing Well by the late William Zinsser '44. In his remarks, Princeton Writes' director, John Weeren, praised contestants for embracing a topic -- diversity -- that is "so idiosyncratic and so transcendent; so central to an understanding of oneself and others [...]

Essay Contestants Fêted2016-07-03T21:19:03-04:00

2016 Princeton Writes Prize and Honorable Mentions Awarded


Staff members at Princeton University can compose more than just well-crafted emails and reports as proven by their participation in the second annual Princeton Writes essay contest, an initiative designed to inspire and recognize outstanding writing on their part. This year’s submission prompt invited employees to share their thoughts on diversity in our community. Out of 20 submissions across 18 academic and administrative units, an essay by Bryant Blount took the top prize. April Armstrong, Violette Chamoun, and Brian Mondschein received honorable mentions. From left, Princeton Writes Staff Essay Contest honorees Brian Mondschein, Bryant Blount, Violette Chamoun, and April Armstrong. [...]

2016 Princeton Writes Prize and Honorable Mentions Awarded2016-06-01T09:00:18-04:00

A Special Evening


On April 11, Princeton Writes hosted its first Celebration of Student Writing, featuring the best work of eight undergraduate organizations dedicated to the written and spoken word, including Ellipses Slam Team, The Nassau Literary Review, Nassau Weekly, Innovation, Princeton Traveler, Figments, The Stripes, and All-Nighter. Pieces read or performed ranged from long-form journalism to poetry; from short fiction to late-night comedy. Held in conjunction with Princeton Preview, the Celebration drew well over 100 prospective students and current members of our University community to the Hamilton Murray Theater.  Below are a few mementoes of this festive occasion, courtesy of Thomas Garcia '16. [...]

A Special Evening2016-04-18T00:30:26-04:00

Dinner Discussion with Amy Waldman on April 4


Journalist and novelist Amy Waldman will discuss her twofold calling over dinner in Mathey College's private dining room on Monday, April 4, from 7:00-8:00 p.m. Co-hosted by Princeton Writes, the Walter Lord Society, and the Writers Studio and geared to undergraduates, "The Whole Truth: Telling Stories Through Journalism and Fiction" will explore how writers can develop their voices in both genres, probing the possibilities of each.  How, for example, can fiction transcend the limitations of journalism to tell a fuller story? When can journalism provide greater clarity than fiction? Waldman is a visiting lecturer in the Council of the Humanities and [...]

Dinner Discussion with Amy Waldman on April 42016-03-31T17:51:02-04:00

A Celebration of Student Writing


In this post, Maha Al Fahim '19 describes a new initiative that Princeton Writes is sponsoring – one that will showcase the remarkable work that student writers on our campus are producing outside the classroom. A Celebration of Student Writing, to be held from 7:00-8:30 p.m. on Monday, April 11, in the Hamilton Murray Theater in Murray-Dodge Hall, is open to all current and admitted students, who may obtain free tickets at the University Ticketing box office in Frist Campus Center or, in the case of current students, by logging in online at, beginning March 28.  Any remaining tickets will [...]

A Celebration of Student Writing2016-02-29T15:09:57-05:00

Roundtable with Amy Rowland on February 23


Novelist and National Endowment for the Arts Literary Fellow Amy Rowland will lead a dinnertime discussion entitled "Finding Your Novel in Real Life" in Mathey College's Firestone Room on Tuesday, February 23, from 7:00-8:00 p.m. Rowland, whose debut novel, The Transcriptionist, earned her the Addison M. Metcalf Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters last year, will explore the relationship between fiction and reality. How, she will ask, do novelists choose what to take from life when constructing a fictional self, a character, or an imaginary world? Is all writing autobiographical, as the Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Donald Murray famously [...]

Roundtable with Amy Rowland on February 232016-02-20T11:59:27-05:00

Write On! 2016 Staff Essay Contest Welcomes Submissions


Please consider entering Princeton Writes’ annual essay contest, which was inaugurated last year to encourage and recognize clear, creative, and compelling writing on the part of the University’s academic professional, administrative, and support staffs. This is a unique opportunity to express yourself outside the day-to-day confines of emails, spreadsheets, and reports, and even those who do not think of themselves as “writers” are warmly invited to participate. This year’s contest focuses on diversity of all forms in our community. You are invited to write about your experience with the presence or absence of differences and the impact of that experience on [...]

Write On! 2016 Staff Essay Contest Welcomes Submissions2015-11-13T15:47:31-05:00

A Celebration of the Written Word


On a sunny afternoon in June, in the gracious setting of Maclean House, Princeton Writes honored the contestants in its inaugural staff essay contest, which attracted submissions from across our campus. While four employees, Marianna Bogucki, Ruth McGuire, Jamie Saxon, and Dana Sheridan, received special recognition, program director John S. Weeren paid tribute to all who exercised their creativity, thanking them for embracing the "challenge that every word presents – to be as true as possible to what we see and hear and touch and taste and smell and feel; to capture, in this case, the character of our remarkable University." [...]

A Celebration of the Written Word2015-06-17T14:54:56-04:00

Winners of Staff Essay Contest Named


Four employees have received accolades for their submissions to Princeton Writes’ inaugural essay contest, which was launched last fall to encourage and recognize outstanding writing on the part of University staff. Marianna Bogucki, Ruth McGuire, Jamie Saxon, and Dana Sheridan were among 41 contestants, representing 29 academic and administrative units, who responded to the Selection Committee’s invitation to “describe an aspect of Princeton’s campus that often catches your attention.” In a pool of superlative essays, theirs most clearly, creatively, and compellingly addressed this topic, earning Bogucki the Princeton Writes Prize and McGuire, Saxon, and Sheridan honorable mentions. From left, Princeton [...]

Winners of Staff Essay Contest Named2015-05-25T14:50:19-04:00
Go to Top