Teaching English in a Foreign Land: The Book

It gives me great pleasure to be able to introduce my non-fiction travel literature book Teaching English in a Foreign Land available on Kindle:  amazon.co.ukamazon.com, also available on paperback. Also available on the Kindle Owners' Lending Library.

If you’re a fan of my blog then you’ll love my book, even if I do say so myself. Before I go on to tell you a bit more about why I wrote this book, including an explanation for the front cover, here’s the blurb.

Follow Barry around the world as he tells the story of how teaching English as a foreign language changes his life. After doing a TEFL course in London, he flies to South America alone. He has no job to go to but hopes that teaching English will fund his travels – ultimately, it opens up opportunities all over the world.

During Barry’s two-year TEFL adventure he has several nervy encounters with local louts in Ecuador and Brazil, collapses after a trip to Machu Picchu, gets stuck next to ecstasy raving loonies and a transvestite on a Greyhound Bus across America, struggles to settle Down Under, finds himself working for strict Catholic nuns in Bangkok, and meets some sex mad Babushkas on the Trans-Mongolian railway.

This book is essential for anyone who wants to see how rewarding it can be to teach English in a foreign land.

Why did I write this book?
I wrote this book to inspire travellers, teachers, and recently finished University students to get out there to experience the fantastic world of TEFL. This is the book I would love to have had when I finished University and wanted to travel the word while earning a living.
My story of teaching English round the world shows that travelling alone is difficult, but with determination and luck you can meet amazing people who can help you achieve your ambitions. With the current economic crisis, the TEFL industry is expanding every year. There are many reference books on how to teach English as a foreign language, yet few teachers have written travel books about their real life experiences living abroad.

How long did it take?
My family and close friends know how long.

“Have you finished that book yet?”
“What, you’re editing it again?”
“Are you writing the next War and Peace?”

Those were just a few typical questions I’ve heard over the last seven years. That’s right, I’m not ashamed to admit it, but that’s how long I’ve been writing this book for.

It was encouragement from family and my wife (girlfriend at the time) that made me realize I had a story to tell. After positive feedback from a couple of short stories I decided to write a book so others could see what it's really like to travel the world and teach English.

At first, I didn’t really know how to write, some might say that I still don’t, but it’s taken me a long time to become a writer. First I wrote down all my memories from the trip, going through old emails, diary extracts, and looking at photos. In the meantime I read loads of travel literature books and self help books about how to write. After a year I had all my memories down, but one small problem; there were over 600 pages. So I decided to write two books.

I spent a year or so editing and produced a book called ‘Struggles, muggings, and naughty Latin lies,’ which I sent off to plenty of publishers and agents in London. Meanwhile I got on with the second book. A year or two later, after lots of rejections, reading even more travel books, and doing a writing course, I edited the two books into one. After another year of trying to find a publisher and agent I’ve decided to go down the self-publishing route. 

What about the cover?
Well, for the actual story about what happened, you’ll have to read the book I’m afraid. However, I can tell you that he’s not swearing. I met him at Ankor Wat, Cambodia, and we had a good chat, which does explain why he has two fingers up.

What next?
As you can see from my blog I’m doing a DELTA, so my book writing has been put on hold. I’m half way through a fictional novel based on flamenco in Seville, but that won’t be out for a while, hopefully not another seven years though.

On a final note
I’ve really enjoyed writing Teaching English in a Foreign Land and it’s an exciting moment for me that people can, hopefully, enjoy reading my story. I have to thank a lot of people, which I’ve done in the acknowledgements page; you know who you are. The only thing I’d ask is that if you enjoy reading my book then spread the word, leave a comment on my blog, and leave a review on my amazon page or lulu.


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