LITERARY AMWA

A Gallery of Writing

About Literary AMWA

The effective practice of healthcare requires the ability to recognize, absorb, interpret, and act on the stories and plights of others. This ability, known as narrative competence, enables the physician to practice medicine with empathy, reflection, professionalism, and trustworthiness. Such a practice is called narrative medicine [1].

Narrative medicine can change the way we practice by focusing on the emotional integrity of a patient’s story and how we react as humane clinicians. Practicing narrative medicine enables providers to connect with their patients through illness and suffering, reflect upon their individual journeys through medicine, create dialogue and empower relationships with fellow healthcare colleagues, and promote public health advocacy in today’s society.

Literary AMWA is a gallery of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry writing from women physicians and physicians-in-training who hope to foster healing through storytelling.

[1] CHARON, R. (2001). NARRATIVE MEDICINE: A MODEL FOR EMPATHY, REFLECTION, PROFESSION, AND TRUST. JAMA , 1897-1902.

Submissions

Call for submissions in fiction, non-fiction, and poetry

AMWA is pleased to announce the launch of Literary AMWA, a new initiative by the Literary Arts and Medicine Task Force. Literary AMWA features an online and print gallery of writing by women who practice the art and science of medicine.

We warmly welcome submissions of any length in fiction, nonfiction, and poetry crafted by women in medicine. Pieces may explore the relationships between physicians and their patients, their colleagues, their families and friends, themselves, and society at large. Writings may focus on the connections achieved with patients through their illness, reflections on individual journeys through medicine, the effects of colleagues on the practice and perspective of medicine, or other topics related to the experience of being a woman physician or physician-in-training. Submissions must not be previously published. Please submit your work by filling out this form.

In order to protect patient privacy, stories about patients should not have identifying characteristics. If possible, please also have patients sign a consent.

Submission Form Patient Consent Form

Questions?

Email us at literaryAMWA@amwa-doc.org.

Resources

Reading List for the Aspiring Physician Writer

  • Imaginative Writing: The Elements of Craft by Janet Burroway
  • Master Class on Fiction Writing: Techniques from Austen, Hemingway, and the Other Greats by Adam Sexton
  • A Poetry Handbook by Mary Oliver
  • Reading Like a Writer: A Guide for People Who Love Books and for Those Who Want to Write Them by Francine Prose
  • Writing Alone and with Others by Pat Schneider
  • Writing Down the Bones: Freeing the Writer Within by Natalie Goldberg
  • Other resources from the Gotham Writers Workshop

Storytelling Webinar

“Empowering Patient Advocacy Leaders (PALs):  The Power of Effective Storytelling in Advocacy” was a webinar held by PALs on January 18, 2017. Presenter Terrence McNally discusses effective elements in storytelling and how to build personal story culture. His presentation slide deck is also available.

Advisory Board

Rita Charon, M.D., Ph.D.
Professor of Medicine at Columbia University Medical Center
Executive Director, Program in Narrative Medicine, Columbia University

Eliza Lo Chin, M.D., M.P.H.
Executive Director, American Medical Women’s Association (AMWA)

Linda Clever, M.D.
President, RENEW

Sarah Cutrona, M.D., M.P.H.
Associate Professor of Medicine, University of Massachusetts

Gayatri Devi, M.D., M.S.
Director, New York Memory and Healthy Aging Services
Clinical Associate Professor, New York University School of Medicine

Cristina Denise Go

Anju Goel, M.D., M.P.H.
Deputy Health Officer (Interim), San Luis Obispo County and Santa Barbara County

Claudia Morrisey-Conlon, M.D.
U.S. Government Lead, USAID

Audrey Shafer, M.D.
Professor of Anesthesiology, Perioptive, and Pain Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine
Anesthesiologist, Veteran Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System
Director, Medicine and the Muse, Stanford Center of Bioethics

Renda Soylemez Weiner, M.D., M.P.H.
Director, Medical Optimization Program Center for Healthcare Organization and Implementation Research
Edith Nourse Rogers Memorial VA Hospital
Associate Professor of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine

Editorial Board

Eliza Lo Chin, M.D., M.P.H.
Executive Director, AMWA

Linda Clever, M.D.
President, RENEW

Cristina Denise Go

Anju Goel, M.D., M.P.H.
Deputy Health Officer (Interim), San Luis Obispo County and Santa Barbara County

Preeti John, M.D., M.B.B., M.P.H., F.A.C.S.
Clinical Assistant Professor, University of Maryland School of Medicine

Emily Transue, M.D., M.H.A.
Senior Medical Director, Coordinated Care
Clinical Associate Professor, University of Washington School of Medicine

Tana Welch, Ph.D., M.F.A.
Associate Professor, Florida State University College of Medicine