On being retired

It’s so long since I last published anything on this blog (since the end of my A–Z of pronunciation, in fact), that I’ve more or less forgotten how to do it. But things have happened since I retired at the end of 2021 that seem to warrant one more sally into the world of blogging.

One of the things that happened was the publication of English Pronunciation for a Global World. This is one of the OUP ELT Position Papers, and in this case it came out of the hugely enriching discussions held between myself, Jane Setter and Ee Ling Low.

If you know of anybody who needs a starting place for understanding how to go about teaching the pronunciation of English, a teaching colleague or one of your MA students, then the Position Paper is not a bad place to go. It can be downloaded free from:


Of course, for anybody that wants to go deeper into the pronunciation of English as a lingua franca, I had already written Teaching the Pronunciation of English as a Lingua Franca, an OUP teacher’s handbook that came out in 2010. Sadly, the book had sold out by 2021, and it looked as if it wasn’t going to be reprinted. I say ‘sadly’ because since retiring I have received a steady string of communications asking me where to get a copy of the book. You can’t, I’ve been obliged to answer. It’s out of print.

Well not any more!. At least not since last Friday when it went up onto OUP’s online catalogue. Not that you’ll find it there! I’ve tried and tried and better tried, but even with the ISBN (9780194658850) the OUP site insists I don’t exist. However, OUP don’t actually sell their ebooks. These go out through various other sites, among which you have:




So even though I don’t have access to the TPELF ebook myself (unless I buy it, which I’m not tempted to do), at least it is now available for all those who might be interested, including the recordings of numerous, competent ELF speakers, and their gloriously diverse accents.

But also heading your way, though I’m guessing that this won’t be until this time next year, is another OUP title on pronunciation that I’m working on right now with a colleague from the IATEFL PronSIG. Not that I’d planned to be doing this. I really had seen myself as retired back in 2021, or at least as semi-retired. But of the two, so far it’s been the latter, and with the accent firmly on ‘semi’. I’m not complaining, of course. It’s just that it’s not at all what I’d expected. But perhaps that’s what’s making my retirement so much fun!