As an educator you write often, but writing¬†a book can still¬†be¬†intimidating. As you start to write it is important to remember the famous line by William Zinsser, “writing is thinking on paper.” Or in this case, writing is¬†teaching on paper. You may not be an author, but you are a teacher, and that gives you¬†an expert advantage when it comes to the textbook authoring process.

When writing a textbook, it is important to consider the following elements:

  • Tone: In what tone do¬†you want to present your materials? How do you want the¬†learner to react?
  • Tense: Past or present? In most cases, non-fiction and news materials are written in past tense, and readers expect¬†it.
  • Consistency: Tone and tense should be used consistently throughout your writing. If using existing materials, adapt the materials to¬†match¬†tone and style,¬†so that the work is¬†cohesive.
  • Quality: A work, no matter the strength of its ideas, will be judged on the quality of its execution. This means you’ll want to use proper spelling and grammar. There are many¬†grammar guides and apps online to help with proofreading and review.

Read more about style and consistency in the Style Guides chapter.


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