Flynn’s Educational Grotto Blog#1: Where it all began for me …Selling Teaching Resources Online by Michael Flynn

26 Aug

Grotto Hindsight Wisdom: Dynamic ideas are often the by-products of disasters.

6 years ago, all of my teaching resources were systematically wiped out by a ransom virus, even my Drop Box. I tried everything I could to recover them, but alas, they had been exiled to a virtual prison island and were never to be seen again.

All joking aside, it was gutting. Those lousy virus architects, no 'architects' is too complimentary ... The lousy virus 'scumbags' had literally murdered 100s of hours of work. Swine’s! ... and fancy holding a teacher to 'ransom' too - I mean, when you consider the basic iconography of a stereotypical teacher, an Armani suit and an offshore account doesn't immediately come to mind. At that point in my life, I think I'd held about £5.64 in savings and a further £3 lost down the back of the sofa.


Instead of holding a minute's silence or entering a period of mourning, I decided to learn from experience. I thumped my chest defiantly - This will never happen again!

But what now?

I wasn't amazing with technology; I just wanted a free and safe online location to store my future resources. The ransom virus had been able infect my Drop Box, so I wanted to steer clear of Clouds and Drives ... partly because I hadn't really understood what they were back then. 

On the 11th October 2016, I had scratched together 35 new resources and I uploaded them to the TES (Times Educational Supplement) website. It hadn't been a commercial decision. I'd just surmised that the TES was a market leader in all things education, and the security attached their website was probably better than anything I could have purchased as a mere mortal.

2 weeks later I was shocked to find that I'd earned £35! 'Gobsmacked'. £35 was a takeaway for two, half a tank of petrol or 35 lottery tickets, should I ever feel lucky again. It was head scratching time … I had created those resources because they had been needed for my classroom, I had been paid for delivering those resources within my salary ... and yet there I was ... sort of getting paid again! As i said, gobsmacked.

I am now entering my 6th year as an academic author, but this year I have given up my classroom work and made this my primary source of income. This blog will recount all my failures and successes, providing frontline wisdoms for any author hoping to enter the same field. Please do leave your comments, observations or questions - I will try to respond to you all.


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