I have just signed up for three, yes, three online courses.

This free online course is for English language teachers around the world. It will help you develop the skills and practices you need for your continuing professional development (CPD).

This course is part of our Teaching for Success: Practices for English Language Teaching program. In the program we will look at the 12 professional practices for CPD on the British Council’s teacher development framework.

In this course aspiring writers will be introduced to perhaps the most elemental and often the most challenging element of story: plot. We will learn what keeps it moving, how it manipulates our feelings, expectations, and desires. We will examine the choices storytellers make to snag our imaginations, drag them into a fictional world, and keep them there. We will learn how to outline and structure a plot, discuss narrative arc, pacing and reversals and reveal the inevitable surprise: connecting the beginning, middle and end.

Have you always wanted to write, but never quite had the courage to start? This free course, Start writing fiction, will give you an insight into how authors create their characters and settings. You will also be able to look at the different genres for fiction.

  • identify strengths and weaknesses as a writer of fiction
  • demonstrate a general awareness of fiction writing
  • discuss fiction using basic vocabulary.

I do this with two reasons in mind.

First and foremost is to update and revise my own skills.  While I hold a degree, it is in a very specific area of history. It also dawned on me recently that I took my English Literature A’ Level sixteen years ago.  That was a realisation that had me reaching for the teabags and kettle, believe me. So here I am updating my skills, but don’t believe for one moment that I feel like this is a chore.  I love these online distance learning courses.  I spent five years with the Open University, taking one module at a time, to get my degree and while some units were more interesting to me than others, I thoroughly enjoyed it. Any chance for more study is welcome.  Yes, I am one of those…

Secondly, I initially began my degree with a career in teaching in mind.  Now I have finished and, much like my two co-authors on this blog, I find myself on a path to a career in editing.  While not quite the path I was expecting, editing work remains essentially a teaching role.  It is my job to guide writers on their way to publishing the best work they can produce. I do still hope to train in F.E. teaching and if that helps me to become a better editor, then so much the better. I have not stopped on my path, I have merely taken a minor detour.