Fun Facts

    • I’m the oldest of three children. My younger brothers used to call me “sarge.”
    • Those same younger brothers once chased me around the house with a kitchen knife. This was after they realized they didn’t have to do everything I told them and stopped being my personal slaves.
    • One of my brothers threw an empty beer can at me splitting my eyebrow and requiring stitches. I think I might have been yelling up the attic stairs at him. And, no, he hadn’t been drinking. It was the 70’s when kids started beer can collections of craft beers across the country. You couldn’t get them at any grocery or liquor store like you can now.
    • I once took a personality test for a job and the test scorer told my prospective boss that I could give a drill Sargent a run for his money. (I got the job!)
    • Another personality test I took said that I am ‘results oriented.’
    • My twenty-something son told me a few years ago to stop ‘trying to manage’ him. ~ ~ Do you see a pattern emerging?!?! Now that he’s on his own we don’t have that problem anymore. I’ve really tried to squelch this tendency in myself over the years, but it doesn’t seem to be working!! 🙂 If you want someone to boss you around, I’m your girl! (Although I choose to see this as a sign of my leadership skills and not inherent bossiness!!)
    • I like to make things. Especially using textiles – I sew, knit, felt – I love upcycling things from Goodwill into pillows, scarves, mittens, purses, etc.
    • I held the indoor record for the 220 yard dash – so long ago it was before metrics – at my high school for several years.
    • If I suddenly had  free day I would plan out what I wanted to do so I would be sure to do everything I wanted. I would even plan out my relaxation time.
    • I speak a little French from high school and whenever I travel to another country with a different language, no matter what the language is, I have an irresistible urge to speak French.
    • When I was in France years ago I gave a man helping us with a broken down car the okay sign…and he looked at me oddly. Apparently, in French it means ‘you suck’ or better yet ‘you’re an a-hole’. Nice way for me to thank him!
    • I don’t like to sit still and do nothing, so I often bring knitting with me.
    • I have boy/girl twins and when they were little people would ask me if they were identical…nooooo, one’s a boy and one’s a girl. Remember high school biology?
    • My freshman high school biology teacher told me I should be a nurse because I was doing so well in the class. When I came home and told my mom she said “You should be a doctor.” I have her to thank for always believing I could be anything I wanted to be. 🙂 That was the beginning of my love of science.
    • My senior high school Advance Placement biology teacher was what we used to call a ‘male chauvinist pig’. Another girl and I were doing extremely well in the class and he couldn’t deal with it, so he barely acknowledged us. We both scored 5’s on the AP exam. I still remember his face when we told him. Winning is the best revenge.

Here is the Real Bio

I haven’t always been a writer. Many writers kept journals when they were young and wrote stories and dreamed of becoming a writer. That wasn’t me. I don’t journal, I make lists. Lists of things to do, grocery lists, lists of ideas or topics, you name it. I keep a spiral notebook for each project. I also like pretty office supplies, like notebooks, pens and pencils and stickers and file folders. You’d think I’d be very organized, but it’s just a futile attempt to control the chaos!

I’ve always been a voracious reader. I’ve started getting books on tape to listen to while I’m driving – I drive A LOT! I also read books on my iPad, my iphone (in a pinch – its not my first choice) and of course REAL books. So many books, so little time!

I have a degree in biology and thought I would be a doctor at one point. My path didn’t lead that way, but science plays a big role in my writing. I think the author who influenced my writing the most is Madeline L’Engle who’s writing combined elements of science fiction and the spiritual/metaphyscial. All of my novels have an environmental theme and incorporate true science in addition to science fiction.  INDIAN SUMMER has an archeological and historical theme, and also an environmental conservation element. THE FIELD also has the environmental theme and delves into quantum physics and The Universal Energy Field (as well as high school soccer). I know, sounds thick, but it’s a good read! The third book, CATALYST, carries on with the environmental theme as it deals with fracking.

I started writing when my kids began reading and I rediscovered all the books I loved as a child and new books I’d yet to discover. I found myself developing stories of my own so I began writing novels for children and young adults. Images from my childhood growing up on Lake Michigan and the landscape of Indiana feature prominently in my novels.

I live in Indianapolis in a eclectic part of town called Broad Ripple. Lots of shops and restaurants, coffee shops and a few bars. I like traveling, gardening, reading YA novels, knitting, sewing, felting – anything to do with fiber arts – rummaging through junk shops, cooking, spending time outdoors and dancing!

Edited_Headshot_02 - Copy

Butt In Chair

People are always telling me they want to be a writer or they have an idea for a book. They want to know how to do it. There’s a saying among writers – BIC – Butt In Chair. To be a writer you have to actually write! Obvious, right?!?! Those same people often come back to me again and again and say the same thing. The answer is always the same. Sit your fanny down and write!

I recently visited Creekside Middle School to talk with aspiring writers about What It Takes to Be a Writer.

Here are some highlights from the talk.

~Read – anything and everything.

~Observe – get ideas from people and places around you.

~Exercise your imagination – Einstein said imagination is more important than knowledge.

~Create a Good Story Arc and a Memorable Hero

~Write – obvious, right?

~Revise – Your first draft is never your last draft. It probably sucks!

The most important thing, though, is to get started. Revising is a lot easier that writing the first draft, but you can’t revise a blank page.

THE FIELD is a One of a Kind Story

Amazing review of The Field from Chick-lit Café.

The Field by Tracy Richardson is an imaginative, engaging read about soccer, teenage angst, science and the supernatural. Readers will revel in this one-of-a-kind story.

Eric Horton is an exceptional soccer player and goalie. He has the ability to perceive where the ball is heading and is able to block it with uncanny accuracy. Eventually, he begins to question and perceive that this ability could be coming from a supernatural source. He is a good student and takes an AP class in Environmental Science, taught by a new teacher from France. Then, he is lucky and manages to go out with the French teacher’s beautiful daughter, Renee. The new physicist teacher convinces Eric and his friend Will to be test subjects for some scientific research he is conducting, and Eric soon discovers that he has the natural ability to communicate through telepathy and perform astral projections.

But, when things start to go wrong with his friends, Will and Rene, he begins to doubt himself. He must pull it together and use the gifts that he never knew he had. Eric has frightening dreams and forebodings that torment him, and they are beginning to come true. But, with the use of his recent source of energy and strength, he manages to take control, and perform supernatural feats.

The Field by Tracy Richardson is a fabulous book for teens and young adults. It is filled with intrigue, mystery and sweet romance. The author has a lot of scientific knowledge and it is apparent throughout this story. This a great read for those who think outside box, and desire to explore the idea of how everything in the universe is connected, and the possibility of the paranormal and supernatural, specifically from a scientific approach.

Tracy Richardson has created realistic and relatable characters that teens and young adults will connect with. Parents will get a clue from Eric’s character and mind, as to what is going on in a teenagers head. Richardson has a unique way with words, and had me feeling like I really knew and understood Eric. Her descriptive writing pulled me in from the very first chapter and kept me fully interested all the way through to the astounding conclusion. The plot is great, and the book is full of drama, mystery and romance.

The Field is thought-provoking, entertaining and completely different from anything I have ever read. Chick-lit Cafe recommends it to those who love science fiction, the paranormal and the mysterious universal connections between energy, humans and matter. Get yourself a copy, we are confident you will love it!

Order your copy today!

The Secret Life of Trees

I’ve recently been revising my novel Indian Summer to add more conflict and mystical experiences. The story is about how Marcie tries to stop development of an old growth forest on the lake where her grandparents live.

A few weeks ago I went to a film festival sponsored by the Indiana Forest Alliance and connected with the Development Director, Sandra Messner. We had a great conversation which sparked some ideas that I plan to incorporate into the novel. The Alliance’s mission is “to preserve and restore Indiana’s native forest ecosystem for the enjoyment of all.” The Indiana Department of Natural Resources’ mantra is that “for forests to be healthy, they need to be logged” which does not support preservation of our old growth forests. Sounds like a good start for some conflict to develop!

I also ordered the book, The Hidden Life of Trees – What They Feel, How They Communicate by Peter Wohlleben, which arrived yesterday. I’m super excited to read it. The inside flap says,

“…trees are like human families: tree parents live together with their children, communicate with them, support them as they grow, share nutrients with those who are sick or struggling, and even warn each other of impending dangers.”

This begs the question of whether trees are sentient beings. In The Field I explore the Universal Energy Field and Collective Consciousness as they relate to the interconnectedness of humans, but what about other living (and even non-‘living’) entities like animals and plants (or the Earth itself)? Are they connected? Do plants have feelings? There is another book that looks interesting on this subject The Secret Life of Plants by Peter Thompkins and Christopher Bird. In her book, The Intention Experiment, Lynne McTaggart cites experiments by Cleve Backster showing that plants react to human intentions.

Research is one of the best parts of writing. The idea that plants are sentient beings and have feelings and react to danger and human activity is super intriguing! Can’t wait to learn more and incorporate it into Indian Summer.

The Indiana Forest Alliance aims to preserve forests for the enjoyment of all. In Japan, the practice of ‘Forest Bathing’ is widely practiced. Spending time in nature is scientifically proven to improve your health. I’ve even read that some physicians are prescribing time in nature as treatment. This is one of the reasons that I incorporate environmental themes in my novels. The natural world is beautiful, awe-inspiring, priceless and feeds our souls. We must be the Earth’s caretakers, not exploiters.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Goodreads Book Giveaway

The Field by Tracy Richardson

The Field

by Tracy Richardson

Giveaway ends March 02, 2019.

See the giveaway details at Goodreads. Enter Giveaway

Enter to win one of three signed Advance Review Copies of The Field!

Eric has a lot on his plate. Crazy dreams (or are they premonitions?) of a world on fire; an inexplicable connection to the new girl in school; a new supernatural awareness on the soccer field that is equal parts mystery and gift. Eric begins to question reality itself as more strange things unfold to shake his grasp on the world around him.

The Global Consciousness Project

In The Field Eric is connecting to something, some force, when he’s in the goal that gives him a sense of knowing where the ball is going to go before he possibly could. He doesn’t know what it is and struggles to control it. Through the vehicle of story and Eric’s struggles, I wanted to explore the idea that we are all connected by the same energy field, the same power, the same consciousness. Although it may seem like a metaphysical concept, there is real science to back it up.

Quantum physics has shown that at a subatomic level everything is connected. These tiniest of particles only have meaning in relation to other particles, linked by a dynamic web of interconnection, and once in contact with one another, they are always connected. This connectedness transcends time and space. This has been proven in numerous experiments.

What’s been difficult for scientists to determine is how this connectedness translates into the life we see around us. Do these same principals apply to us? Are humans all connected to one another and if so, how?

There is an interesting on-going experiment called The Global Consciousness Project run by an international consortium of scientists and volunteers that measures random white noise occurring in the noosphere to test the theory that humanity itself has a global consciousness. In other words, is there evidence that our consciousness as a species is connected in some measurable manner?

From the website:

“Personal experience is supported by a growing number of good experiments which show that consciousness and intention have subtle but important effects in the world. We know that groups of people sometimes experience a special resonance of feelings and ideas, and recent scientific evidence indicates that effects of coherent group consciousness can be detected with appropriate instruments. The Global Consciousness Project (GCP) is an international collaboration of researchers extending this research to global dimensions via the internet.”

Since 1998 the group has gathered and analyzed data according to rigorous scientific protocols, and has found “strong” and “significant” evidence that certain events, such as the funeral ceremonies of Princess Diana, the terrorist attacks on 9/11, terrible accidents and natural disasters, major religious gatherings, and midnight on any New Years Eve, have a worldwide impact that can be measured as a “spike” on a graph. They state, however that “we do not know whether there is a global consciousness.” Source EGGs in a Global Basket by Wm. Michael Knight

Although the scientists of the Global Consciousness Project don’t purport to draw the conclusion that there is, in fact, a consciousness that connects us all, I believe that there is. What do you think?

Premonitions and Intuition

Have you ever had a thought or feeling about something that later came true? Did you realize what it was at the time? If you had known that it was a premonition would you have acted differently?

I recently had two separate traumatic occurances where I had a premonition about them beforehand. It wasn’t as though I ‘knew’ what was going to happen, more like a fleeting thought crossing my mind that I remembered after the event.

The first was a car accident. I had been driving all around central Indiana a day in mid-December and was headed home. It was early evening – dark and raining. Visibility was bad and I was concerned about getting into an accident. I had a fleeting thought that I might get rear-ended, but it was just that – a fleeting thought. It occurred to me and then I moved on to other thoughts. I had been in a rear-end collision on a similar dark and rainy night in October, so I attributed it to that connection.

The car in front of me stopped on the four lane, busy road to turn left. I wasn’t able to pull past her into the right lane so I waited for her to turn. After a few moments I heard a screeching sound and then BOOOOOM! someone crashed into me from behind hitting me so hard that I crashed into the car in front of me and hit my knees on the dashboard. It wasn’t until later that I remembered the fleeting thought of the rear-end collision. Could I have avoided it if I had known it for a premonition? I’m not sure what I could have done.

The second premonition was about my nephew breaking his arm. Over Christmas I went to California to visit my brother and his family and to watch his two kids while he and his wife took a little ‘adults only’ vacation. My niece and nephew and I were having a great time on our ‘Auntventures’ going to museums, roller skating and going to the movies and the library – they love to read!! My brother suggested I drop them off at a bouncy-house play center on Friday evening so I could have a few hours to myself. I remember thinking – ‘Ben is going to break his arm’. Again, it was hardly even a solid thought, just a fleeting idea. I dropped them off and went into the little town to shop and have dinner.

Midway through my dinner and into my second glass of wine I got the call. I thought – ‘here it is’ – before I answered. Ben may have broken his arm, they said. When I got there I was met with a fire truck, ambulance and police car all with lights flashing. He did in fact break his arm pretty badly, but I’m happy to report that the cast was just removed last week and he is healing beautifully!

What if I had paid closer attention to my intuition or premonition and not taken them to the play center? Would Ben not have broken his arm? Probably. Was it really a premonition or just me thinking of a possible likely scenario? The doctor who treated him said they see kids with broken bones from those bouncy houses all the time.

In The Field, Eric has frightening dreams that he doesn’t know what to do with. Is he connecting with The Field? The Collective Consciousness? Was I? What do you think?

Clean, Renewable Energy

One of the themes of The Field is the benefits of clean, renewable energy sources versus burning fossil fuels or using nuclear energy. In my research for the book I was surprised to learn that France generates 76% of its energy from nuclear plants and 14% from hydropower. This was a conscious decision for France to become energy independent after the 1970’s Mid-East Energy Crisis. While I’m not a particular fan of nuclear energy and the resulting radioactive waste and potential for reactor breach, it is a clean source of energy.

I recently read that Germany made a decision after Japan’s Fukushima disaster in 2011 to shut down all its nuclear power plants by 2022. See article in the LA Times. Germany also decided to close all of its coal plants by 2038 and to spend millions mitigating the impact on the coal regions. This is the kind of energy leadership we need.

Central Indiana is dotted with wind farms which I find surprising in the coal belt. Both major north-south highways to the east and west of the state pass through giant wind turbines. The one near I-65 is the largest east of the Mississippi.

Kind-of makes me proud to live in Indiana.

Midwestern Beauty – Research for The Field

The subtle beauty of the Midwest features prominently in The Field. I love the big sky and clouds arching over the plains. One of the places Eric and Renee visit is an actual place from my childhood – The Skokie Lagoons. Of course it’s fictionalized in the book, but the inspiration is located in Glencoe and Winnetka, IL where I grew up.

The Skokie Lagoons

It’s a marshy area that was turned into lagoons by the Civilian Conservation Corp in the 1930’s and is now a wooded recreation destination area. It’s such a beautiful area I wanted to include it in my book.

What do you love about the Midwest scenery? What is one of your favorite places?