Former Richmond School pupil publishes first book

Jonathan Watts and his new book.

A former Richmond School student, who developed a passion for the classics and writing while studying at the school, has published his first book.

Jonathan Watts’ Bury Me Where They Fall is a fantasy novel which follows the story of Amiel, a young rebel warrior who begins a deadly and mythical mission into uncharted forest lands.

Jonathan, 31, who grew up in and around Richmond but now lives in Bristol, is planning to return to Richmond School in the spring as a guest speaker.

He will share his experiences since leaving school and how his subsequent studies, work experience and passion for writing have led to his first book being published.

A project is already underway for the school library to host a dedicated display area about Jonathan’s novel and use this as a platform to encourage students to read the story.

They will then be invited to write reviews and this will form a question and answer session with Jonathan when he visits.

Jonathan is proud to follow in the footsteps of former Richmond School pupil Charles Dodgson, more widely known as Lewis Carroll, who wrote the acclaimed Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.

After his A-levels, Jonathan studied a BA and MA in classics at Newcastle University before pursuing a career as an advertising copywriter, writing for Kylie Minogue, Jack White of the White Stripes and Comic Con, among others.

However, after being inspired by fantasy author David Gemmell, it was always Jonathan’s dream to become a published writer.

17 years on, he has released his first novel.

Jonathan said: “I had a fantastic time at Richmond School and Sixth Form College, and really felt I engaged with the subjects. It is a wonderful place to study.

“When I left to go to university in 2006, I never imagined the next time I’d be returning was as a published author.

“I am so grateful to everyone at the school for having me for this visit. I’m really looking forward to it.”

Rebecca Weston, lead teacher for English, said: “It is really exciting for our students to have the opportunity to meet and engage with a writer.

“Many of our students who enjoy creative writing have ambitions of publishing their work.

“Hearing from Jonathan, as a former Richmond School student, talking about his experiences will be incredibly inspiring, and may lead to others following his example.”

The book is available at Castle Hill Bookshop in Richmond.