Hi, I'm Kelly, I'm a freelance writer and a CELTA-qualified ESL teacher.
As a writer, I cover a range of subjects for a number of different clients in various industries. My focus for Listen and Learn is obviously on language and travel, but outside of that, I also write a lot about animals and the environment, among other topics. In fact, I have written everything from press releases for start-ups to ghostwriting biographies! Travelling gives me a fresh perspective for all the things I get to write, and allows me to consider varying points of view thanks to the people I meet along the way.
Europe is a wonderful place to travel. The countries fluctuate so much, as do the languages, food and ways of life. Though beneath all of that, travelling has really taught me that people are mostly alike and that we have more similarities than differences. At Listen and Learn, we talk a lot about languages teaching us so much more than purely vocabulary and grammar, and it is true; there is nothing as exciting as striking up a conversation with someone you might not normally get to speak to, just because you have made the effort to learn some of their language.
Teaching English has given me further insight into how crucial it is to learn other cultures and languages. I've taught lessons about the climate and the impacts of coastal erosion on beaches , and helping students to understand menus in restaurants. I've even worked with the CEOs of large businesses and newly qualified architects starting their own companies; people with completely different lives to mine, and it has been a privilege getting to know them all! But undoubtedly, my favourite thing about teaching is seeing my students achieve their goals. There is nothing as rewarding as seeing clients proud of their hard work and going on to achieve their goals as a result!
Nicole Eberhard has a Masters degree in English Literature which has left her with a book-buying problem. She has since abandoned the world of academia, moved to South America, and is pursuing her great love: travel writing.
Though born in the USA, Katie has spent most of her life living outside her native country and considers herself a life-long expat. Following an exciting childhood in Mexico, Katie moved to Cuba, where she received her professional dance training, before going on to work as a dancer and instructor in the US, the Philippines and Singapore.
Katie also obtained a dual BA from UT Austin, majoring in Chinese and Asian Cultures and Languages. While at UT, she garnered extensive experience as a language student, studied abroad in Taiwan for a year on a language scholarship and even participated in a business language case competition at BYU in Provo, Utah.
After managing to find another third-culture adult like herself, Katie made sure to marry him. She’s now a part of a traditional Hindu Indian family and all the interesting, funny and crazy experiences that come with it! This, along with Katie’s love of learning new languages, has given her a unique insight into life as a multi-cultural expat. Helping other people make these same sorts of transitions is one of Katie’s passions—whether they’re moving to another city or country, going abroad on holiday for the first time, travelling for business, or learning a new language.
Travel, expat life and language learning can be intimidating, and Katie is keen to take away that ‘scare factor’ through her writing. She lives by J R R Tolkien’s famous quote: ‘Not all those who wander are lost’ and believes that, with a little help and encouragement, anyone can take on the nomadic life.
When not splitting her time between India, the US and Mexico, Katie is based in the UK, where she dreams up travel and language articles, ideas for novels and plans for visiting places on her travel bucket list. Her favourite form of travel is by train, and she can’t live without her daily cuppa while on the road. Paul Theroux and Bill Bryson are two travel writers she absolutely idolises.
John McMahon is a writer, motorcycle tour operator, and sometimes antiques exporter who lives on the banks of the River Kwai in Kanchanaburi, Thailand. His writing both fiction and non-fiction has appeared online and in print all over the world.
Dusty is a full-time freelance writer and worldwide traveler who prefers not to sit still for very long. She's on a lifelong mission to perfect her Spanish and blend in with the locals as she travels through Latin America and beyond.
An explorer at heart, Heather has been working abroad as a teacher for the last 4 years in Jakarta, Donetsk, Budapest, London and currently Seoul, South Korea. She studied German and English, and loves writing, watching films, learning new languages and cooking.
Christian Adams is a writer and musician based in Taipei, Taiwan, and Metro Manila, Philippines. Born in Chicago, he earned a degree in creative writing at San Francisco State University. With 20+ years of writing and performing under his belt, Christian's first book of non-fiction, The Lazy Bastard Guide to Mandarin, was published in 2012 by IPMG, New York. Excepts of the book can be read on his website: https://blacksunshinemedia.com
I am originally from California, USA, but have been living abroad for the last 8 years and loving every minute of it. I learned Japanese as a second language starting at 15 years old and have continued to learn Spanish, German and Hebrew. My first overseas trip was to Japan when I was 14 and it made such an impact on me that I never stopped. During my bachelor’s degree, I studied abroad in Spain for one year and in Japan for half a year. After graduating, I moved to Buenos Aires, Argentina, and worked at a Spanish language school helping international students enrol in language courses. After two years, I moved to Germany and did my master’s degree in cultural studies, focusing on Latin America. During my studies, I worked as an English teacher and taught classes on US culture. I was able to do research in Mexico for a semester and graduated after 2.5 years in a small city in northwest Germany. I most recently moved to Tel Aviv, where I am working as a content writer and loving life close to the beach. My travels have taken me to many countries, but my favourite experiences have been to feel the way of life while living in a new country. From eating sushi for breakfast at a fish market in Tokyo to joining a dance team at my university in Germany, the small moments have made the biggest impact on me. I have found that language is the best tool to connect with international cultures and people. Through living abroad, I have been able to integrate into different societies and truly understand what makes each region unique. Sharing these experiences with other language learners is a way to spread my firsthand knowledge of how language can enrich someone’s life. I hope to always continue to travel and learn languages.
Gaetan was born in Martinique, a tiny paradisiacal island lost in the Caribbean. Having the incredible chance to speak 3 languages as a native (French, English, and Kréol) naturally motivated him to go travel the world (Australia, China, Colombia, Argentina) and expend his language skills. His dream is to speak 8 languages fluently by the year 2020. He’s got 5 in so far, the clock is ticking fast, and he knows it!
Gabrielle van Welie is a giant nerd from the Dominican Republic currently based in Madrid. She's the editor of http://thenerdleague.com and runs a writing blog over at http://literallywrite.com. If you need to spot her in a crowd, she's the one with the deadpan expression.
My name is Kyra (K eye ruh), named after a freedom fighter Israeli, who was my mother’s best friend, and my last name is of Ashanti origin, passed down from my great grandfather, Assibey-Bonsu, who was an Ashanti king. My parents are native Ghanaians, and I’m a native-born Ghanaian-Texan-American. I’m fluent in Spanish and English and have an undesirable elementary level of Twi, but I’m working on that. Latino culture has always influenced me due to my Texas roots, so it was a natural fit to speak Spanish. I grew up listening to Twi; however, due to some ill-fated advice from a teacher and the prevalence of English, Twi was no longer spoken to me and became the language I heard in passing only.
Readers should confide in me and have confidence that I understand what it means to travel between various cultures and languages because my entire life has been based on that aspect. I grew up in Texas, was educated in Boston, lived in upstate New York, moved to NYC as an adult and, in between, I have lived in Delhi, Madrid, and Buenos Aires. After 13 years of constantly moving, I currently reside in Brooklyn, New York.
I’m an expert at languages and travel because I have moved to several countries where the dialect, culture, and language were new to me. I understand what it means to be a new language learner and to adapt to the nuances of a new country. My passions are a new space to explore, stories in articles, books, or television form, foreign cinema and small films, and dancing to whatever music inspires me to do so. Currently, I am creating and recording a podcast about the immigrant/first-generation/emigrant experience around the world and how such experiences should strengthen and open our eyes to the difficulties that we human beings face by moving from place to place. Similar stories will be reflected in my writing. It is my goal of 2020 to write for more publications, so stay tuned!
I love and hate to write in the same vein. My stories are often autobiographical and/or second-hand experiences from friends and family members. I’m a diligent researcher and take pride in learning and exploring as much as possible for places and spaces that are new and old to me. I love to receive titbits of suggestions, anecdotes, and thoughts, so feedback is always welcome. My passion has always been about absorbing and understanding the her-story and his-tory of my community and beyond, and I do so by tasting, listening, and walking. The best way to learn about a new community is to explore its neighbourhoods.
Felix is an English graduate with a passion for languages. Besides speaking Spanish and English, he is now learning Portuguese since he hopes to move to Portugal soon. His other passions include travelling, eating cheese and writing. When he has some time, Felix likes to read novels and listen to music.
Born in Johannesburg, South Africa, before moving to Cape Town at age 5, Tamara studied art and literature at Stellenbosch University. Completing her Honours in English Literature, she continued on to the University of St Andrews in Scotland for her Master’s. Currently writing for the travel industry in Cape Town, she plans on moving to the USA with her fiancé in the near future.