Self-publishing for ELT Professionals

Self-Publishing for ELT Professionals with Dorothy Zemach


Have an idea for a book, but not sure how to get it off your computer and into other people’s hands? This workshop is for you! In this four-week course, every participant will create an original ebook—it could be lesson plans, exercises for students, essays and reflections, research results, or whatever strikes your fancy! Not every work will be something suitable to sell, but you’ll learn the entire process from evaluating an idea, revising the material, soliciting feedback, and formatting and publishing in ebook format (longer works could also create paperback books). This is more than just a “how to”—it’s the actual doing.

While it isn’t required, I highly recommend signing up with some material already written or at least outlined (though it could be just a chapter from a longer work). The more you have, the further you’ll get. For this reason, we are offering a 30% discount to participants who have already taken Creating ELT Materials with Katherine Bilsborough in July 2018. During Katherine’s course you will learn about the principles and theories behind materials writing as you build up a portfolio of original teaching materials.

Live online sessions will be held in the iTDi virtual classroom in September. Live sessions will happen at 03:00 GMT, which will be Saturday in the Americas, and Sunday in Asia.

Live sessions (registered participants only)

  • September 2nd – course participants only (60 minutes)
  • September 9th – course participants only (60 minutes)
  • September 23rd – course participants only (60 minutes)
  • September 30th – course participants only (60 minutes)

Time: 03:00 – 04:00 GMT – Check your local time here: CONVERT TIME

If the time for the live sessions doesn’t work well for your time zone, don’t worry! We record everything, and most of the work will take place in our online community (which is always open) so you can easily participate even if you can’t join the Saturday/Sunday live sessions

Everyone registering for this course is expected to:

  • Prepare and polish original material for an ebook
  • Attend (or watch recordings of) the four live sessions
  • Complete the discussion tasks and assigned readings
  • Post your own work and respond to the work of others
  • Submit a final project to Dorothy for evaluation

Due to the hands on nature of this course, we will only offer two levels of certification.

Certificate of Distinction

US $169 – If you want to pursue marketing and selling your ebooks, register for the Certificate of Distinction. In addition to the feedback provided to all participants during the course, Dorothy will provide marketability critiques for teachers working toward this certificate.

Certificate of Accomplishment

US $99 – If you want to learn how to create great ebooks for your colleagues and students, register for the Certificate of Accomplishment.

Take this course together with July’s Creating ELT Materials and get 30% discount off BOTH courses. LEARN MORE


As always, iTDi believes that all teachers deserve the same opportunity to improve themselves. Therefore, a limited number of scholarships will be available for this course. Please apply through our scholarship application.

About the course

During this month, you’ll choose a topic for the work you want to publish, write it, format it for ebook (and possibly paperback), and evaluate its potential audience to decide whether it would be appropriate to distribute free to a select group of people or to offer for sale commercially.

Specifically, we’ll look at:

  • Deciding what to write: Is your project viable? useful? desirable?
  • Choosing a format: What content works best for ebook? For paperback? What is the best way to present your work?
  • Writing the work: You’ll have to actually create your content. Depending on the scope of the project you choose, you might finish a portion or chapter of the work, or the entire thing.
  • Formatting and creating: How do you create an ebook file? How do you create a paperback file? (Note: in this course, we’ll be primarily looking at ebook creation, because that can be done free of charge with a shorter learning curve. Formatting interior files and covers for paperbacks is more time-consuming to learn. Elements such as cover design can be outsourced, but that would require paying someone outside of this course.)
  • Beta reading, editing, and feedback: Participants are expected to give and receive honest, useful feedback about one another’s works. Come with an understanding that every piece of writing can be improved, and be open to receiving assessments and suggestions, and be willing to offer the same.
  • Distribution: Is your work ready to sell? If so, where and how will you sell it? Is it appropriate to distribute it some other way? And if so, how and where?
  • Marketing and Publicity: How can you make the world aware of your work?

Course requirements: You will need these things:

  • A Gmail account, to access the course materials
  • A way to read ebook files on your computer, tablet, or phone. Software for reading ebooks is freely available online to download; we will discuss some options on the first day of class if you do not already have something.
  • A legal copy of Microsoft Word. Other word processing programs might present challenges for formatting and conversion that I cannot solve. If you’re willing to take that risk, then you may; but you must acknowledge that it’s possible you will not be able to complete some tasks, including the final creation of your book.
  • A willingness to problem-solve. Working with different computer systems and software means that unexpected glitches and challenges turn up. Almost all of them are solvable, but it can take some discussion and hunting for solutions and trial and error. Proactive problem-solvers will be happier writers. Note that I am more familiar with the Macintosh OS than I am with PCs; but I will have plenty of resources available for you.
  • A commitment to doing things legally—including not appropriating text or images that are copyrighted. By taking this course, you agree that you have the legal right to publish any and all text and images that you use in your works.
  • An understanding that some resources will be mentioned that cost money—such as photo databases. You are not required to use any of these, and we will discuss free workarounds. However, I am going to point out those resources that I think are top quality, and some of them are not free. Whether you purchase any additional software or subscriptions or services is entirely your choice and will not impact your ability to finish this course.

Get your professional development certified with iTDi

Participants working toward a Certificate of Accomplishment will be expected to a create an ebook as a final project.

Certificate of Accomplishment $99

In addition to creating an ebook, participants opting for the Certificate of Distinction will also receive marketability critiques from Dorothy.

Certificate of Distinction $169

Take this course together with July’s Creating ELT Materials and get 30% discount off BOTH courses.


Questions about the course?

Self-publishing for ELT Professionals

About Dorothy Zemach:

Dorothy holds an MA in TEFL and has been teaching English for 30 years. Since turning to materials writing, she has penned everything from the Teddy Bear’s Magic Music teacher’s book to the lowest and highest levels of Macmillan’s flagship course Open Mind to the groundbreaking English for Scammers (self-published). She’s worked with CUP as an in-house senior development editor, and has written and/or edited as well for OUP, Macmillan, Pearson, Cengage, and University of Michigan Press, among others. In 2012, she founded Wayzgoose Press, an independent publisher of fiction, literary non-fiction, and educational materials. Dorothy’s website:

This 4-week online iTDi Advanced Skills course will bring up to 100 teachers together in our user-friendly iTDi online classroom every Sunday, and then continue throughout the week, sharing, discussing and reflecting in a private but vibrant online community. As a registered participant, don’t worry if you ever have to miss a class. You’ll receive weekly recordings of each class, full transcripts of the text chat during class, assigned readings and a PDF of the PowerPoint slides. Furthermore, the online community will certainly become a wealth of ideas and information, and it will remain private and online for your use anytime in the future.

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