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Programming Director

What would you say is the best thing about belonging to a professional association?

Last week, I renewed my membership with the American Medical Writers Association (AMWA)!

When I joined a year ago, I had been working as a medical translator for five years, but I was new to medical writing. At that point, I had been considering a career as a medical writer for a while; but it was reading a book that convinced me to go ahead:

The Accidental Medical Writer: How We Became Successful Freelance Medical Writers — How You Can Too by Brian Bass, MWC, and Cynthia L. Kryder, MS, CCC-Sp.

This book includes an invaluable section with resources for people who want to get started in medical writing. Some of the recommended books that I have read are:

  • American Cancer Society Textbook of Clinical Oncology — Edited by Walter Lawrence and colleagues.

  • The Anatomy Coloring Book — Authored by Wynn Kapit and Lawrence M. Elson.

  • Health Literacy from A to Z: Practical Ways to Communicate Your Health Message — Authored by Helen Osborne (new edition out now)

  • Medical English Usage and Abusage — Authored by Edie Schwager.

Additionally, I have purchased subscriptions to the American Medical Association’s Manual of Style and Dorland’s Illustrated Medical Dictionary, which are invaluable.

Joining AMWA allowed me to take the Essential Skills Express Package and earn the AMWA Essential Skills Certificate.

These are some of the educational opportunities that AMWA offers, which I have already completed:

  • Cite It Like You Mean It — How to Locate, Select, and Cite References Correctly

  • Differences and Similarities Between Publication and Regulatory Medical Writing

  • Don’t Believe Everything You See, Hear, or Read — The Art of Critical Thinking

  • Misplaced Modifiers

  • Overview of the AMA Manual of Style (11th Edition)

  • Using Plain Language to Communicate More Effectively with the Public

My next ones will be:

  • Clinical Study Report Development (Parts 1 and 2)

  • Diary of a Drug — Writing and Updating the Investigator’s Brochure

Last but not least, I am proud to serve my AMWA regional chapter (AMWA Rocky Mountain Chapter) as Programming Director.

I want to thank our now Immediate Past President, Lindsey Summers, for this opportunity and the rest of the Board of Directors for reelecting me for the 2022–2023 term.

The chapter’s events are free and open to both AMWA members and non-members. We are also looking for presenters for future educational opportunities (webinars), so do not hesitate to contact me if you are interested!


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