Fiona Cameron-Brown - Writer for hire

English is hard

The challenges of a second (or third) language – I get it

In South Africa, we have eleven official languages.  When I qualified as an English teacher, competence in Afrikaans was a requirement.  It was difficult.

I only just passed.


I was born in Britain, of an English mum and a Scottish dad.  My father spoke a little Gaelic and kiSwahili, but at home we only ever spoke in English.  Other than at school, I had little exposure to a language other than English.

English is my mother tongue.  I am a first language, native English speaker. I write idiomatic English and speak English with a neutral accent.  South Africans and visitors to the country often ask if I’m from Britain.  Honestly!

P’raps I’ll add a podcast about something and you can actually hear my voice – and accent…

Because my parents emigrated to sunny South Africa, when I was little, I grew up here.  Now I live in a village in the winelands.  Not far from Cape Town.  In McGregor, I live in The Sandbag House.  In my spare time I cook and I write.  You can read my personal writing here.

Back to the language stuff

I now speak Afrikaans that’s only just passable.  The words often just fall out of my brain and I can’t.  I am not a comfortable reader or writer in the language.

Why is this important?

Because when I say

I understand that writing in a foreign language is difficult

I really do!

English is difficult

At different times over the years, I’ve tried to learn isiXhosa, French and Spanish.  Because I am no longer exposed to these languages, my competence is less than rudimentary.  In any of these languages.

Let me help – here’s how.

Contact Fiona to discuss your English coaching needs

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