It occurred to me that I have a story to share that is relevant to the discussions about vaccinations. Back in the ‘80’s when I was a student at Indiana University there was a severe outbreak of the measles. I was one of the people who caught it. We were the ones who, as children, were inoculated with the dead virus instead of the live virus. Our bodies did not manufacture antibodies for the dead virus and so we did not develop a resistance to the disease.
I was lucky.I didn’t have a severe case. I was just really sick and didn’t feel well and had spots everywhere, which wasn’t great for a college junior looking to meet guys! However there were people that I knew of who were deathly ill in the campus infirmary. I don’t think anyone actually did die, but for a while it was touch and go for a few extremely sick students. What did happen to me was that my resistance and immune system were comprised for months afterwards and I caught strep throat and fever blisters and the flu and was sick for most of the spring semester.
The outbreak was a VERY big deal at the time. The national news came to town and wandered around Dunn Meadow on an unusually warm February day that often happens in southern Indiana looking for people to interview who knew something about the outbreak. There were hundreds of students out enjoying the sunshine. Since I’d actually contracted measles, I stepped forward and was interviewed for the national news and seen by friends and family across the country. I’ve always been in favor of vaccines, and this personal experience serves to reinforce my perspective. I know there are many people who are against vaccinations and I respect their opinions even though I don’t know a lot of the reasons behind them. I share this for information as my own personal experience.
I’m about a quarter of the way through with the very rough draft of my next untitled novel. Titles are really hard and I’m hoping for some inspiration to strike somewhere in the writing process!
As in my other books there is an environmental theme. I’m very concerned about what humans are doing to our planet with pollution, nuclear radiation, fracking, and burning fossil fuels. There is a lot of evidence that what we do harms the planet and I believe that there is a limit to what the Earth can absorb of our throw-away culture. There are better, healthier alternatives to plastic waste, pesticides and chemical fertilizers, and fossil fuels. Don’t even get me started on antibacterial soap! Antibiotics are turning up in mountain stream water! We just have to show a commitment on a personal level. What you do does matter. Corporations and governments won’t change of their own volition. They change in response to economic pressures – buying habits of consumers – and public pressure – how we vote. My way of showing my commitment is to include these issues in my books interwoven with stories of normal teens.
In THE FIELD the characters learn about and interact with The Universal Energy Field and the Collective Consciousness. This book will have aliens. Or star-beings, or extra-terrestrials – whatever you want to call them. If you think about the vastness of the Universe – billions of galaxies, billions of stars with billions of planets – I think it is naive, and really arrogant, as well, to assume that we are the only form of intelligent life out there. Or that we are the most advanced form of life. These other life forms could be so advanced that they could already be here without our knowledge. At least the knowledge of the general population. There are certainly enough UFO sightings by credible sources such as airline pilots and military personnel to make one wonder about it.
A lot of books and movies about aliens have them attacking Earth. Then there are movies such as Interstellar, ET, Contact, and Close Encounters of the Third Kind. What if that is the truth? What if star-beings don’t mean to harm us, but want to help us? Are we ready to accept their help?
Here are some sites with more information.
Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence Institute – SETI – Carl Sagan Center
Institute of Noetic Sciences – IONS Founded by Apollo Astronaut Edgar Mitchell – Science and Consciousness
“The Field is an electrifying …[and] imaginative book full of action and mystery. I liked that the author blended a believable story about a regular high school boy with just enough sci-fi to make it enjoyable. … if you are a soccer fan who also likes a little bit of sci-fi, this book might be for you.” ~ LitPik reviewed by Jotaf aged 13
I love getting reviews from teen readers. Nice to know that he loved the book! Read the full review at LitPick.
Here’s what my niece and nephew received from me for Christmas! I love making kids sweaters because they go so fast.
Here’s almost-four-year-old Olivia’s sweater. And there are my feet in the picture!! :)
Six year old Ben’s sweater is a little camo-looking.
Here’s the thing. My niece and nephew live in northern California…I’m just hoping that it gets cold enough for them to wear them. I know I’ve been to the park with them often enough wishing I had mittens. I hope they like them as much as I enjoyed making them! I even bought little labels that say “Hand Knit by Tracy Richardson”. Maybe they’ll save them for their own kids!! Just a thought.
This is my craft room. I don’t get down here as often as I would like, but it is a very soul-filling space for me,
Here are the work spaces. I LOVE the color I chose for the walls. My sewing machine is 16 years old. I bought it used for $1000, but it is amazing, Will sew through almost anything and has tons of decorative stitches (most of which I don’t use).
Yarn in all colors left over from other projects. I use them when making applique.
My husband’s grandfather’s desk that I refreshed and updated with Chalk paint.
Design and pattern books and rick-rack.
Old buttons that I buy in bulk at antique stores.
I need to get down here and do something creative!! I am always knitting something as I can carry that with me, but other projects require time and space. Maybe I’ll chalk paint another table?!? :)
I will be signing books at the Holiday Author Fair at the Indiana Historical Society this Saturday from noon to 4pm. Come and buy some books – they make great gifts!