Hi guys, I had the honor of interviewing author Tracy Richardson recently for my tour stop. I am so pumped to share with you our dialogue as it is very fascinating how Tracy was inspired to write her book the Field, who her favorite author is, what prompted her to start writing, her writing style, and much more. Without further preamble here is my interview with the Field‘s author Tracy Richardson…
- Who is your favorite author and what is it about their work that makes them your favorite?
I would say that the author who most influenced me is Madeleine L’Engle. She wrote a great deal about the intersection of science and spirituality. Her novels deal with real life characters having science fiction type experiences – time travel, space travel, and travel into the microscopic space of our own bodies. Since I have a science background, I find this very intriguing. I just re-read her book “A Ring of Endless Light” and was surprised to find that the characters describe having a kind of ‘knowing’ when communicating with dolphins. The premise for THE FIELD is about this ‘knowing’ coming from connecting with The Universal Energy Field.
- What was the catalyst to you becoming a writer and author?
When my children began reading and I started revisiting the books from my own childhood, I started getting ideas for my own novels. One day I just started writing! I wanted to explore personal topics like friendship and personal growth and larger environmental issues. YA and middle grade novels seemed to be the right fit for me.
- Would you say you have a specific writing style?
I’m not sure how to describe my writing style. I think it is fairly straight forward and realistic with some element of description. I tend to include a lot of science or science fiction in my books as well.
- What was your inspiration for writing The Field?
In writing THE FIELD, I was influenced by four things: Dystopian YA literature, how sports can be a metaphor for life, environmental issues and science fiction
There is so much post-apocalyptic literature out there, it seems to me that all we see in our future is doom and gloom. I think we are better than that and I wanted to write a story that reflected that. In many ways THE FIELD is a hopeful tale of human potential.
The title of THE FIELD has a double meaning . The first is the field of soccer. The soccer theme is the thread that weaves through the novel driving the action forward. Eric’s literal battles on the soccer field parallel his off the field struggles with his best friend Will’s spiral into drinking and destructive behavior. In that sense it is a very true to life, realistic story.
The other field is The Universal Energy Field and what Jung called the collective unconscious and I call the collective consciousness. Eric is somehow connecting to this field while he is in the goal making saves. It is also a potential source of energy that we can tap into as an alternative to burning fossil fuel. This is the science fiction element of the book.
The environmental influence is from my own personal interest. We live in a throw-away culture not caring about how our plastic bottles or lawn fertilizer will affect the world around us. I believe that the time has arrived when we have to take notice and care of our home, the earth.
THE FIELD is ultimately about connections. Between friends and families; between humanity and the environment and in the end, the connections that unite us all. I hope that my books allow people to look beyond what they think they know is true, and, hopefully, give them a really good story to enjoy while they’re doing it.
- Are any of the characters in The Field based on people you know?
Many of the teenagers in the book are composed of bits and pieces of actual teens my kids are friends with. I pick the most interesting parts and then morph them into my characters. When my brother read the book, he said it was so interesting to try figure out what parts I took from real life and what parts I made up. Even the real places and real people who provided inspiration are used in fictional ways. The lagoons in the book are based on lagoons near where I grew up in Illinois, but the town where Eric lives is based on a southern Indiana college town. My son would tell you that Eric is him, but I never thought of him that way. Eric is a person that I made up. My characters all have a little bit of me in them, too.
- What was the hardest part about writing The Field? What was the best part?
The hardest part is revision and making sure that it is the best book it can be. The best part is when I get into the ‘zone’ writing and time flies by. It is incredibly cool to create people and places in your mind and have them come to life on the page.
- And finally, do you have any advice for aspiring writers?
There is really no magic formula for writing. You just have to sit down and start writing. The first thing you put down on the page will not be perfect, but it will get you started. Someone I know calls it “BIC” – Butt-In-Chair. I can’t tell you how many people tell me they want to write a book. Not as many people actually do it. So you have to write, write, write and read, read, read. Also, go to writer’s conferences. You will get terrific advice on all aspects of writing and have agents and editors available to offer critiques and to take unsolicited submissions from conference participants.
About the Book – About the Author – Prizes!!!
Welcome to another exciting publishing house spotlight tour from Novel Publicity. Join us as two new titles from Luminis Books–we’re calling them the Luminis Dyad–tour the blogosphere in a way that just can’t be ignored. And, hey, we’ve got prizes! About the prizes: Who doesn’t love prizes? You could win either of two $25 Amazon gift cards, an autographed copy of The Field by Tracy Richardson, or an autographed copy of its tour mate, Second Verse by Jennifer Walkup. Here’s what you need to do…
- Enter the Rafflecopter contest
- Leave a comment on my blog
That’s it! One random commenter during this tour will win a $25 gift card. Visit more blogs for more chances to win–the full list of participating bloggers can be found HERE. The other $25 gift card and the 3 autographed books will be given out via Rafflecopter. You can find the contest entry form linked below or on the official Luminis Duo tour page via Novel Publicity. Good luck!
About the book: Eric Horton finds himself plagued by terrible nightmares of explosions, fire, and someone screaming. The more they occur, the more real they seem, causing him to question whether they’re just harmless dreams or foreshadowing of a dark and devastating future. And that’s not the only strange thing happening. On the soccer field, he’s been in the zone, saving shot after shot with what feels like a supernatural awareness of where the ball is going to go next. Then there’s the connection he feels with Renee, the hot new student from France. It’s as if he’s known her forever. Still, all these wild visions and synchronicities pale in comparison to the strange experiments Renee’s dad is cooking up in the University physics lab. When he asks Eric to serve as a test subject, Eric must again question whether what he’s seeing and hearing is reality—or something far beyond it. When his best friend Will starts drinking way too much and Renee has eyes for other guys, Eric loses the edge he’s always had in the goal, and confidence in himself. If he’s going to pull it together, Eric must tap into a part of himself that he never knew existed, and that might just be the part that connects us all.
About the author: Tracy Richardson wasn’t always a writer, but she was always a reader. Her favorite book growing up was A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle. In a weird way that book even shaped her life through odd synchronicities. She has a degree in Biology like Mrs. Murry and without realizing it she named her children Alex and Katie after Meg’s parents! Tracy uses her science background in her writing through her emphasis on environment issues and metaphysics. When she’s not writing you’ll find her doing any number of creative activities – painting furniture, knitting sweaters or cooking up something in the kitchen for her vegetarian, carnivore and no-carb family. She lives outside of Indianapolis with her husband and two children and their Jack Russell terrier, Ernie. Connect with Tracy on her website, Facebook, or GoodReads.
Luminis Books was launched in January, 2010 by husband and wife team Tracy Richardson and Chris Katsaropoulos with a mission to publish thought-provoking literary fiction for children and adults. We publish what we love: Meaningful Books That Entertain. Our award-winning books engage and inform readers and explore a wide range of topics from love and relationships, teen sexual assault and homelessness to string theory, consciousness, and the Universal Energy Field. Luminis Books is a proudly independent publisher located in Carmel, IN. Learn more at www.luminisbooks.com.
Learn more about The Field‘s tour mate HERE.