16 October 2023

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‘Inspirational’ is how the Year 7s described the visit of author Ruth Eastham to Priory. 

Ruth is the sister of Principal Mr Eastham and is a multi-award winning author of five books  - The Memory Cage, The Messenger Bird, Arrowhead, The Warrior in the Mist and the Jaguar Trials.  

She has visited Priory a number of times to speak to the pupils and inspire them to be the next generation of writers. 

“It’s always good to come here,” said Ruth. “We have been talking about what the ingredients are to make an exciting story – imagination, an amazing protagonist, an amazing antagonist and an amazing setting. 

“They were all really keen to listen and ask questions. I trained as a teacher so it’s nice to come back into school and deliver sessions, including drama and discussions and ten minutes of powerful writing and there were some really imaginative stories.” 

Ruth trained as a teacher at Cambridge University and studied Science but always enjoyed writing.  

“My breakthrough came when I entered a BBC competition to write children’s fiction, to find the next JK Rowling.  I was a finalist and that was probably the pivotal moment in my career, that was my inspiration.” 

As a former teacher, Ruth enjoys visiting primary and secondary schools and telling her story as well as inspiring others.  

“Doing this combines my teaching career, being with kids, and my love of writing. I have written five books and have some more in the pipeline but it can take a few months to write one or sometimes a few years!"

Year 7 Elif said: “I have learnt that Mrs Eastham’s first book was Memory Cage but I really enjoyed all the drawings connected with them as I like art.” 

Imogen said: “I was inspired by Mrs Eastham. Even when she was rejected, she was persistent.” 

Sienna said: “It has encouraged me to read one of her books now.” 

Oliver added: “I learnt that there are lot of books and all are different and it depends on your personality which kind of books you like.” 

Tags: English Extra Curricular Year 7 Library