Jane Mitchell

Award-winning writer of books for young people

About me

Childhood

photo of author

I live in Dublin, Ireland, where I've lived for most of my life. When I was a baby, I lived in the UK, but I don't remember much about it. I also lived in Northern Ireland, where I started school and learned to ride my first bike. I wobbled on my little red two-wheeler a lot to begin with, and one time, I fell into a bunch of nettles. I also got to bring home the school hamster one weekend but it bit me on the finger when I was cleaning out its cage. I was in the bathroom at the time and I got such a fright, I fell into the toilet!

Hobbies

My favourite hobby is travelling to see other countries. I spent a year travelling around the world and living out of my backpack. I've been fortunate enough to visit many amazing countries.

I studied classical flute for many years and I also play traditional Irish flute, which is different to classical flute. Ireland has a rich cultural heritage and music plays a large part of Irish life. I have a piano, which I love, but I'm not able to play it very well: I just have fun with it.

I like to swim, run and workout. I ran the Dublin City Marathon twice. That's a whole 26 miles, or 42 kms! It was really tough but I enjoyed the experience immensely and am very proud for having completed it.

I love hiking and have been lucky enough to trek to the Incan city of Macchu Pichu in Peru and through the foothills of the Anna Purna mountain range in Nepal. I've crossed the Tongariro Alpine Crossing in New Zealand and climbed Table Mountain in South Africa. I've also hiked in Argentina and the isolated country of Burma.

I enjoy cooking and dining out with friends. My favourite cuisine is Middle Eastern, followed closely by Italian or Mediterranean food.

Education and employment

I studied Education in Trinity College, Dublin, and taught primary (elementary) school children before working in the community with at-risk teenagers who had dropped out of formal education. I also worked with young people with physical disabilities and I've completed postgraduate degrees in disability management, business adminstration and statistics.

My writing

Books, reading and writing have been a big part of my life for as long as I can remember. I've loved writing since I was small. I wrote my first poems when I was six, and stapled them into a book with a cover that I illustrated myself. I wrote about my friends, my dog Scruffy, and my family. I still have this first book! I also still have my creative writing copies from when I was 12- and 13 years-old. It’s funny to read them now.

Lots of young people ask me about how to make their writing better. If this is somehting that interests you, check out my webpage of Writing Tips.