Medical Writing Medical Writing Education The Light Stuff

Volume 22, Issue 1 - Medical Writing Education

The Light Stuff

Welcome to The Light Stuff

One of the unwritten laws of EMWA is ‘Never talk to the editor of the journal if you don't want to end up working on it in your spare time’. I can joke about this because as I was the editor of the EMWA journal from 1998 to 2004 back in the days when it was called The Write Stuff, and during my tenure, people avoided me at meetings like I was infected with the plague. It sometimes seemed that the only thing that was needed to empty the bar of people at an EMWA conference was for me to enter. So I definitely should have known better than to talk with Phil Leventhal, the current Editor of Medical Writing, at the recent EMWA conference in Berlin. We were naturally discussing the EMWA journal past and present when I foolishly mentioned that I missed the humour section of the journal that we had in The Write Stuff entitled ‘The Lighter Side’. I instantly regretted it as I saw Phil's eyes twinkle and he pounced on me like a spider on the unsuspecting fly who has just stumbled onto the web and said, ‘Well then why don't you bring it back for Medical Writing?’ As one who firmly believes that nothing in life is worth doing if we cannot keep our sense of humour, I agreed. So here we are with the revival of what I hope is a great tradition. I thought that a name combining the old title of the humour page (The Lighter Side) combined with the old title of the EMWA journal (The Write Stuff) would be perfect and thus the name was born . . . ‘The Light Stuff’.

In the coming months we will be continuing the tradition of (hopefully) humorous quotes and anecdotes about medical writing from ‘The Lighter Side’ which some of you may still remember, as well as cartoons with a medical writing theme. Of course, I will be overjoyed to consider ideas or material submitted by the readers, so if there is anything you might like to share with the EMWA members, PLEASE let me know. Indeed, if we can make you laugh or even smile occasionally, then it will all have been worth doing, for as Andrew Carnegie (Scottish-American Industrialist and Philanthropist) said, ‘There is little success where there is little laughter’.

Barry Drees

Trilogy Writing & Consulting Frankfurt, Germany




Medical writing education
Message from the President
EMWA's position on ghostwriting
Essential modules for teaching publication writers
Combined workshops on medical writing and publication ethics for Japanese postgraduate students and faculty members
Teaching scientific writing to non-native English speakers
A field guide to medical writing training
Teaching scientific writing using the learner-centred approach
On educating the medical writer
Learning and teaching clinical writing
Your professional association: A great way to expand your skills and advance your career
Pleasing the reader by pleasing the eye—Part 2 Page layout and readability
Implications of clinical trial data sharing for medical writers
In the Bookstores
Journal Watch
The Webscout
Manuscript Writing
Regulatory Writing
Medical Journalism
Medical Communication
Out On Our Own
The Light Stuff


The Write Stuff Archive Contact Instructions for Authors Article Template (Word) Journal Policies

Editoral Board


Raquel Billiones


Evguenia Alechine

Jonathan Pitt

Managing Editor

Victoria White

Deputy Managing Editor

Alicia Brooks Waltman

Associate Editors

Anuradha Alahari

Jennifer Bell

Nicole Bezuidenhout

Claire Chang

Barbara Grossman

Sarah Milner

John Plant

Sampoorna Rappaz

Amy Whereat

Section Editors

Daniela Kamir


Jennifer Bell


Nicole Bezuidenhout 

Digital Communication

Somsuvro Basu

EMWA News 

Ana Sofia Correia 

Gained in Translation

Ivana Turek

Getting Your Foot in the Door

Wendy Kingdom / Amy Whereat

Good Writing Practice

Alison McIntosh 

In the Bookstores

Maria Kołtowska-Häggström

Lingua Franca and Beyond

Maddy Dyer


Lisa Chamberlain-James

Medical Communications/Writing for Patients

Payal Bhatia

Medical Devices

Evguenia Alechine

My First Medical Writing

Anuradha Alahari

News from the EMA

Adriana Rocha


Tiziana von Bruchhausen


Clare ChangZuo Yen Lee 

Regulatory Matters

Sam Hamilton

Regulatory Public Disclosure

Claire Gudex

Teaching Medical Writing

Louisa Ludwig-Begall / Sarah Kabani

The Crofter: Sustainable Communications

Louisa Marcombes

Veterinary Writing

Editors Emeritus

Elise Langdon-Neuner

Phil Leventhal

Layout Designer

Chris Monk