EWG Seminar Day

Location: SoA offices
Address: The Society of Authors, 84 Drayton Gardens, London SW10 9SB
Event time: 11am-4pm
Learn about writing Graded Readers, discuss the importance of textbooks, hear about how to develop online courses and training materials and consider what you can do to make the most of your author-editor relationship.

Event details

11am: Registration, tea and coffee

11.30am-12.30pm Parallel Sessions*

ELT: Everything you need to know about writing Graded Readers with Nicola Prentis

If you've got a story idea, you can turn it into paid writing and a book cover with your name on by writing it as a Graded Reader for English language learners. But who will publish it, how do you go about finding them and what questions should you ask about the contract? The session will cover all that, as well as how to write them, and what you can expect to earn.

UK Curriculum: How textbooks and digital materials can best be used in schools with John Blake

Following Policy Exchange's recent report on textbook usage in schools, John Blake, Head of Education and Social Reform at the think tank, will share his thoughts on how textbooks and other educational materials can be best used in schools, and what educational authors can contribute to an optimum learning environment. 

*Please note, the UK curriculum session will be held at The Drayton Arms Theatre, South Kensington, London, SW5 0LJ, a three minute walk from the SoA’s offices. If you are attending this session please register at this venue, where tea and coffee will also be served.

Please contact Bryony Hall to let us know which session you will be attending.

12.30-1.30pm: buffet lunch with wine and soft drinks

1.30pm-2.30pm: From Writer to Trainer - Generating Income Online with Susi Pearson and Russell Stannard, chaired by Gavin Dudeney.

In this session we will look at how writers can take their core skillset and knowledge and use it to generate supplementary income by offering online training and development: from short, one-off synchronous (live) events, to more structured asynchronous short and long online courses. You'll hear about these two models from expert course designers and providers, learn about the economic models, find out what works and what doesn't - and have an opportunity to ask anything and everything you've ever wanted to know about marketing and selling your expertise online. 

2.30-3pm: tea and coffee break

3-4pm: Optimising the author-editor relationship with Penny Hands

In this workshop we will look at the results of a survey in which authors and editors were asked about their experiences within an author–editor relationship. We will hear about some success stories and consider potential pitfalls; we will then form discussion groups with a view to identifying ways of ensuring optimal collaboration and effective communication.


From left: Russell Stannard, Susi Pearson, Gavin Dudeney, Nicola Prentis, Penny Hands.

John Blake

John Blake joined Policy Exchange as Head of Education and Social Reform in April 2017, after a decade working as a teacher, senior school leader and leading practitioner in English state schools. He previously worked for the Harris Federation, one of England’s most successful multi-academy trusts, as a History Consultant; as an assistant headteacher at the first selective sixth-form free school; and as head of house, department and faculty in comprehensive and selective schools in London and Essex. John founded and co-edited Labour Teachers from 2011 to 2014 and is currently a member of the Advisory Council of the Parents and Teachers for Excellence campaign, and was formerly on the Advisory Council of NAHT Edge.

Gavin Dudeney

Gavin Dudeney is Director of Technology for The Consultants-E - working in online training and consultancy in EdTech - and also module leader (MATALL) on the NILE / University of Chichester MAPDLE (MA in Professional Development for Language Education). A former Honorary Secretary and Chair of ElCom at IATEFL (the International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language), he now serves on the International House Trust Board and on the Educational Writers Committee of the SoA. A regular keynote speaker at conferences worldwide, Gavin is author of (among others) The Internet & The Language Classroom, How To Teach English with Technology, Digital Literacies and Going Mobile.

Penny Hands

Penny Hands is a freelance writer and editor of English teaching materials. She has worked for the last 20 years as a lexicographer, a compiler of language reference materials and as an editor on ELT materials and teacher resource books. She works with both traditional publishers and, increasingly, with self-publishing authors. Her interest lies in how best to achieve the shared goal of making a book the best it can be, through communication, collaboration and a strong understanding of the field and the market.

Susi Pearson

Susi Pearson has played a key role in the design and development of the NILE Online teacher development courses since their inception in 2014. She has been involved in writing, digitising and editing these online courses which were nominated for a prestigious ELTON award in 2015. Susi also tutors on a number of different online courses as well as providing pedagogical and technical support to tutors new to the online environment.

She has been involved in teaching and teacher training in ELT for over 20 years, working for extended periods in Portugal, Brazil, Poland. As a teacher trainer, Susi has worked with teachers from many different regions, and has run training courses in a number of different countries, including Kazakhstan and Russia.

As part of her MA in Professional Development for Language Education, Susi developed a keen interest in developing effective ELT materials in general, becoming Membership Secretary and a member of the editing team for the Folio Journal of the Materials Development Association (MATSDA).

Nicola Prentis

Nicola Prentis has written Graded Readers for six different ELT publishers, two of which have won a Language Learner Literature Award and one of which never saw the light of day. She also writes general ELT materials, articles for various writing, parenting, women's, travel and general interest publications outside of ELT, and has two erotic novellas published by an imprint of Harper Collins which her mother wishes had never seen the light of day. 

Russell Stannard

Russell Stannard is a founder of www.teachertrainingvideos.comwhich he launched in 2007. He is also a NILE associate trainer. Russell was awarded the British Council ELTons award for Technology Innovation and the Times Higher Outstanding Initiative in ICT award. He was previously a Principal Teaching Fellow at that University of Westminster and the University of Warwick.


All ticket prices include lunch, refreshments and VAT. 
Early bird SoA members: £35 (book by 10 April 2018)
Early bird SoA guests: £45 (book by 10 April 2018)

After 10 April 2018
SoA members: £45 
SoA guests: £55