English Literary Studies graduate Katy Mitchell tells us about her journey to become an author

BA (Hons) English Literary Studies, 2008

UCLan English Literary Studies graduate, Katy Mitchell, has embarked on a career as a freelance writer following ten years working as a teacher.

Katy has always loved reading and writing and enjoyed studying English at school and college. The only degree Katy was ever interested in studying was English literature.

After graduating from UCLan in 2008, Katy qualified as a Teacher of English as a Foreign Language. She travelled across the world with her teaching job and predominantly taught children in countries such as South Korea, Russia, China and Saudi Arabia. Katy enjoyed the work so she decided to return to the UK and complete a PGCE, specialising in lower primary education. After teaching in Lancashire primary schools for a couple of years, Katy moved to Spain to teach English as a foreign language.

After leaving Spain, Katy worked for a company during the summer holidays teaching English to teens, who came from overseas to study in the UK. She then progressed on to become a senior teacher and eventually a course director, where she was responsible for running the summer schools. When an opportunity arose at their London adult English language school, Katy was appointed as Principal, with the responsibility of teaching English to business professionals and executives from all over the world.

Katy Mitchell
Katy Mitchell

At the end of 2018, Katy decided to leave her role to concentrate on writing and other interests. Katy is now a self-employed writer and has had her first novel published entitled ‘Blackout: The Light and Dark Narratives’, which she cites as her greatest achievement to date.

Reflecting on her time at UCLan, Katy spoke fondly: “The community at UCLan was amazing. I made so many friends. My lasting memories have to be all the fun we had, but we also had fantastic teaching staff on our course who were really knowledgeable and made the content interesting. I definitely made the right choice when choosing my course.”

When asked for advice to give to graduates and prospective students wanting to follow a similar path, Katy said: “To those thinking of taking up study, it is worth it. My degree has taken me teaching to some wonderful countries and as a result, I have gained a lot of life experience.

“For budding writers, you can't be a writer unless you actually write something down. Get out a pad and pen or your computer and start writing, even if you think it is no good. Write a little bit every day. It's all about momentum.”