Tes authors: meet two authors who've thrived

Meet Nichola and Adam and discover how our welcoming community has helped them succeed as authors

Tes Author Team

Meet Adam Pate and Nichola Lacey

Our author community is friendly and supportive and there are many ways in which Tes authors help each other. One very successful way is through our Authors train authors events where new and experienced authors share advice and tips to help each other thrive.


90% of authors who have attended our Author train author events have seen an increase in their sales after the event and half of these authors saw their sales double.

Two authors who’ve attended and found the events useful are Nichola Lacey aka nwilkin and Adam Pate aka PateResources.

Here, they talk about their author journeys so far, share their experiences and highlights, and what they got out of the events.


Nichola Lacey aka nwilkin

What did you teach and why did you become a Tes author?

Before I became a teacher, I was a computer programmer and only retrained as a teacher in my early thirties. After teaching ICT in a secondary school, I became head of computing at a small private boy’s school where I could use the skills I learnt as a programmer.  

After a snowboarding accident made me leave teaching, I shared some resources with a few teacher friends and they told me I should upload them to Tes so more teachers could benefit.

I still wanted to be involved in education, so I uploaded a few free resources to see what sort of response I would get and it was very positive. Teachers were downloading them and it was lovely to see my ideas were being used again and not simply going to waste. 

While at the BETT show, one of the staff on the Tes stand suggested that I try selling my resources as my free ones had become so popular. I uploaded just a couple of paid resources and to my surprise, teachers were buying them. I’ve now been selling resources through Tes since January 2017. 

What has been your highlight of being a Tes author so far?

I love it when I get reviews from teachers who’ve used my resources and taken the time to write how my resources have helped them. It’s lovely to see that my resources are being used in schools all over the world.

Being a Tes author has opened up so many unexpected doors for me. I have my first book coming out at the end of July after a publisher approached me after seeing my resources on Tes. I’ve been asked to write for BBC Bitesize and have had several commissions from organisations – all because I’ve shared my teaching resources. I’m able to make a full time living from making and selling resources which wouldn’t have been possible without Tes. I still upload quite a few freebies and have a relatively small store, with less than 150 resources.

One thing you took away from Authors train authors that helped you in particular?

I’m proud to say that I’m one of Tes’ top sellers and was lucky enough to be asked to talk to aspiring Tes authors at two of the Authors train authors events and in the first Authors train authors webinar.

Even though I’m now classed as an established seller, I still managed to get tips from the other speakers. Tim, a brilliant science teacher, gave me an idea that I’m using in all my new resources. He includes a document outlining how different resources link together, so teachers can quickly find his other resources to download. It’s a simple idea that works really well and helps teachers see how a range of resources fit together and the order they were designed to be taught in. 

The Authors train authors events are great fun and really worth attending. If you’re considering or are new to sharing your resources, I‘d recommend you come along to one if you can. You’ll get lots of advice and have the chance to meet others who are in the same situation. And you’ll get a free lunch – it’s a win, win situation!

Which shop tool have you found most useful and why?

Adding customised previews are something I use as it allows my customers to see exactly what’s in my product but also stops people from seeing too much. They’re really easy to create using PowerPoint and saving as a JPG file.

Ready to join Nichola? Find out more about being an author or share your resources in minutes.


Adam Pate aka PateResources

Tell us about your teaching career?

After working as a high school TA for a year, I started an English with SEN PGCE in 2013. I currently teach English at KS3 and KS4 level at an outstanding catholic school in Manchester and have done so for the last five years. I also had a TLR for KS3 progress leader, but this has since been moved up to progress leader for English.

What has been your highlight of being a Tes author so far?

Apart from being able to see a map that shows the locations all over the world where teachers and students are benefitting from using my resources, the biggest highlight is the extra money that can be earned from Tes. Last summer, I was able to fully fund a dream trip across Europe purely with money earned from Tes. This year, I’ve been able to pay the monthly instalments on a (much needed) new car – purely with money earned from Tes. This is all from uploading resources that I've created for my own classes anyway.

One thing you took away from Authors train authors that helped you in particular?

I can’t really boil it down to one top tip – it was all so beneficial. From meeting other authors and discussing things such as tax, to the best way to tag your resources. I think the best thing for me may have been learning to look at the bigger picture. While I was focused on uploading individual resources, the Authors train authors event taught me a lot about opening a Tes shop, titling resources, bundling resources, creating promotions, pricing resources and even which sized images work best on previews – the ‘business’ side of things that, as a teacher, I wasn’t really used to.

Which shop tool have you found most useful and why?

Bundling enables you to group together a bunch of different resources that are all linked in some way and offer them to teachers at a discounted rate. For example, I could take a couple of different English Language Paper One lessons, worksheets and mark books, group them together and offer an English Language Paper One bundle at 25% off. It’s a great tool as teachers that like your resources can get more of them at a discounted rate.

Ready to join Adam? Find out more about being an author or share your resources in minutes.