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Jim's Writing Seminars


Jim has been teaching his seminars on professional writing for more than ten years now, and the classes continue to evolve in response to the conversations that emerge in class.  Jim continues to develop more useful and practical lessons to help solve the everyday problems of writing in the workplace, whether you write analytical reports, official correspondence, or simply the usual slew of daily emails.


Acclaimed as a "Master Teacher" and an "expert on the English language," he has given his writing seminars across Alaska, Hawaii, and the Pacific Northwest for a variety of clients including the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, the International Pacific Halibut Commission, and the U.S. Forest Service. Participants have unanimously acclaimed the seminar both for its content and the instructor's ability to communicate and inspire.


"Jim Hale's unique blend of technical mastery, practical experience, and superlative teaching abilities makes this simply the most useful writing course I've ever had."


"The course not only showed us how to think clearly and write well; the instructor's enthusiasm for his subject is an inspiration to write better!"

From Jersey to Juneau

Jim was born and raised in the New Jersey Bush.  After a stint in the U.S. Navy, he worked his way through college and took his BA in Literature.  In graduate school at Rutgers University, Jim was awarded two major fellowships, the Marion Johnson Fellowship from the Graduate School of Rutgers University and the Jacob K. Javits Fellowship from the U.S. Department of Higher Education, as well as a Folger Fellowship to spend a semester studying at the Folger Institute for Renaissance Studies in Washington DC.


After taking an MA and MPhil in Early English Literature, Jim moved west to become an assistant professor at Central Washington University.  In 1995, he left academics to work as a writer for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Juneau, Alaska. He retired from public service in 2016.

Jim continues to teach his popular Writing for the Workplace seminars around Alaska and the American West.  He has also taught writing (and Latin, to a few intrepid souls) as a volunteer at the Lemon Creek Correctional Center in Juneau.

His seminars have been taken by staff at virtually all State of Alaska departments as well as by staff at various municipal, state, federal, and international agencies in Washington, California, Oregon, Idaho, and Hawaii.

From September 2014 to December 2016, Jim published a bi-weekly column "On Writing" in the Juneau Empire and Capital City Weekly--for which the Alaska Press Club awarded him the Suzan Nightingale Columnist of the Year Prize for two straight years.  He recently published an essay on the 15th-century painting, The Ghent Altarpiece, and is currently at work on a series of essays on early modern European paintings.

Under his nom de guerre Johnny Negotiable, Jim hosts a radio show on KRNN Juneau, 102.7 FM, on Friday mornings from 10 to Noon--a music show that he refers to affectionately as "Episodes in the History of Noise."

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