Jane McCaa was born and raised in Scotland. She attended
the famous Mary Erskine School for Girls, and in her final year
also studied Italian at the University of Edinburgh (she tends to
be quite busy). She went South of the Border to Bristol University,
where she gained her first degree in Greek, Ancient History and
Archaeology, followed that up with a Diploma in Business Studies
and went back for a research degree studying the religion of the
Hittites, which was immediately thereafter accepted for publication.
She also did things like learn karate, dance cha-cha for the University
and smash her leg in a climbing accident, so she may be a swot but
she isn’t a wimp.
After a chance conversation on a street corner with a former
lecturer, she then helped build Bristol Classical Press from a gleam
in the eye to a major player – seven days a week stuff - and
from there back to Bristol University to work in Information (i.e.
journalism, publishing and P.R.) Being the University’s movie critic
was definitely the icing on that cake.
And from there... the lure back into educating as well as
promoting education did not take long, and Jane embarked on her
teaching career. She is unusual in having taught every age
from tiny primary children to pensioner mature students, and she
enjoyed responding to the challenges of each one. Her wide
background of studies and qualifications in Language, Archaeology,
History, Religious Studies and even Business have allowed her to
explore many possibilities and open doors in the minds of her students
– and it all gets fed into the fiction.
Jane has taught in schools in Bristol and the South West but
her greatest educating passion has always been lecturing (she just
loves an audience and they do seem to love her back – they keep
in touch anyway - and she has been a repeat performer as a guest
lecturer for various groups and organisations). She taught
in the Open University, where the students’ questions inspired her
books on daily life in the ancient world, and went on to lecture
at Filton College in Bristol. There’s no room for the whole
c.v. here, but that gives you a flavour.
But this has not been an ivory tower life – Jane has seen the
coalface in offices, shops and catering, and also worked for happy
years with a Bishop as a kind of cross between a P.A. and a research
assistant. She has fitted all this in by holding jobs for
respectable lengths of time but almost never one at a time. Her
record was six at once, but that was in response to emergency and
is not entirely recommended even for someone who has learnt a thing
or two about logistics and prioritising. She is not an aged
crone, she has just packed a lot in.
Jane has now returned home to Scotland, where she lives in the
And the s.f.? All along and everywhere. She wrote
her first s.f. novel about a girl taking her robot sister to school
before she even knew such a thing as s.f. existed, and has been
honing her writing craft ever since.
Studying other lives in other places is the perfect background
for a speculative fiction writer, as Jane explains in the lecture
which you can read here (Download
Jane will talk about her work and s.f. in print and film for hours on end (contact via buttons on each page). She cannot offer individual advice on getting published, but you can read advice based on her years of experience as both publisher and publishee,
read here (Download
chapters from the published and new books on this
site - and there is more to come.
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