Why I write for Oxford University Press

'Bring Your Voice | Diversity and Inclusion'

This blog post is written by Louise Pennington: Professional Development Lead at Oxford University Press

Writing for Oxford University Press

Over recent years, I have been fortunate enough to be able to put my name to MyMaths and Numicon resources published by Oxford University Press, a publisher for whom I now work.

Other teachers and educators often ask me about these opportunities and the benefits they bring. But many also express concerns about imposter syndrome, finding time to write and knowing what to write.

They are usually surprised when I say the process is enjoyable! It’s collaborative and well-supported by an expert publishing team – many of whom have previously been teachers themselves. Importantly for me, writing has become a key part of my own continuous professional development.

Don’t get me wrong, my initial experience when embarking on the first project was daunting. But I gained such a lot from it professionally and feel proud still – nearly 10 years on – when I see schools using the resources I contributed to.

What is the process like?

Usually, you get an author brief which details what the writing needs to cover and a template to write into. You often see a sample, so have a good idea of what’s needed and have ample opportunity to ask questions and share drafts for feedback. Realistic deadlines are shared and there is a clear line of communication if you have any questions or want to check you’re on the right lines. You are often able to feed into the writing format through collaborative discussions before writing starts.

What are the benefits?

For me, writing has supported me in finding my voice outside of the classroom. It has also given me a deeper understanding of my subject. Writing has given me personal satisfaction, greater confidence and increased credibility, which in turn has opened up further career and voluntary opportunities. I have to say that the money gained from writing has been a big plus too!

What I really appreciate, when working on a larger project, is the opportunity to speak to and work with other educators writing at the same time as me. We know how important authentic teacher voices are and how much teachers writing for teachers supports and enhances our education community. Why not add your voice to that?