I have been a professional writer for around 25 years and have written many non-fiction books and curriculum resources for children and schools. Some of my most successful publications were commissioned to support teachers using BBC history programmes. I really enjoyed doing all the research involved in finding out about different historical periods, from Ancient Egypt to the recent past. I used to be a teacher and a teacher trainer, so I know how important it is to make learning interesting and enjoyable. I’ve also written for reluctant readers and I love the challenge of helping all children engage with books. I think helping to develop children’s literacy skills is a vital part of an author’s job and I regularly visit schools to share my experiences.
A few years ago, I achieved a long-term ambition by completing my first novel for 8-11 year olds: 'The Stephensons’ Rocket', about Rocky the former champion greyhound and the family who adopt him. This was very popular and led to two further books in the series. Most recently, I’ve started to do work with, and for, adults. I’m currently working on a collection of short stories for adults and I also teach creative writing. I find this particularly rewarding, especially as two people of my ‘pupils’ achieved their first publications!
I live in Salisbury, Wiltshire, with my daughter, who is my fiercest critic. We have a wonderful view of the cathedral, although I have to try not to spend too much time looking at it, when I should be writing!
Please visit my website: www.jaynewoodhouse.wordpress.com
Jayne Woodhouse in 60 seconds
When did you start writing?Brierley Hill, West Midlands
What do you love about short stories?I love short stories because you can capture an idea in a few pages and experiment with different styles and forms.
Do you write in other forms?Children's novels, non-fiction books and resources
What distracts you from writing?When I have a deadline - absolutely nothing!
Outside of writing, what are your other passions?Theatre, walking, history
What is your favourite book?Charles Dickens - Great Expectations
Who are your favourite writers?William Shakespeare, Hilary Mantel and Alice Munro
Where is your dream location?I already live here.
What one item would you put into Room 101?University fees for students
Do you have any advice for new writers?My advice would be to write every day, even for five minutes - no excuses!
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