History of the Writers' Workshop
The Department of Internal Medicine established the Writers’ Workshop in 2003 to create an opportunity for residents to enhance their powers of observation and to share these observations with their colleagues. Our aims were to provide an outlet for the creative energy among our housestaff, to increase empathy, and to help residents reflect on their experiences through learning the craft of writing. We felt that this focus had the most potential to help our residents appreciate the richness of their patients' stories and the power of these stories to transform the doctor-patient relationship. The workshop also provided an exceptional opportunity to improve writing skills, whether in fiction or non-fiction writing. Dr. Abraham Verghese designed and led the first workshop.
Workshop guest leaders and special guests have included writers Dr. Abraham Verghese, Dr. Richard Selzer, and Anne Fadiman. Dr. Anna Reisman and Dr. Lisa Sanders co-lead the workshop currently.
We are grateful for the exceptional administrative support of Lori Williams and, for many years, Patricia King. Dr. Ashgar Rastegar created the initial workshop and supported it for its first six years. Dr. Stephen Huot now oversees the workshop and has been instrumental in recruiting residents from other departments. Dr. Helena Hansen was deeply involved with the first workshop in 2003.