A grandmother from Berkhamsted has written a light-hearted novel based on her experiences as a schoolteacher.
Jill Heller, 88, has published Miss, I never – a fictional comedy detailing the experiences of Lauren, a newly-qualified teacher who is taken out of her comfort zone when dealing with her new Year 3 class.
Jill, who was a headteacher in Harrow for 11 years, said her grandchildren inspired her to write the book because they knew she had so many anecdotes from her days of teaching.
Jill explained: “This was really just an excuse to write down all of the funny things children said to me during my time teaching. For example, a nine-year-old once came up to me and said, ‘The belly button is where cannibals put the salt’. Children come out with the funniest things, and this book isn’t making fun of them – rather, it’s full of love for them.
“It’s a light-hearted look at teaching, at a time where so many people could do with a bit of light relief. I want to make people smile a bit.”
While the Berkhamsted resident is already working on her next novel, which will be “a beginner’s guide to aging”, Jill said she misses writing this novel.
“I wrote the book predominantly during lockdown, so I was enjoying the company of these imaginary children.”
Jill also jokingly denied that the book’s antagonist, tightly-corseted headteacher, Mrs Montgomery, was in any way based on herself: “She’s purely fictional,” Jill clarified.
You can order a paperback copy or Kindle Edition of Miss, I Never on Amazon now.