First Draft of Catalyst – Work in Progress

I completed the first draft of my next novel titled Catalyst! Now on to revisions. But I’m going to savor this moment for a little while. More adventures with Marcie and Eric Horton. This time they are fighting Fracking in southern Indiana and much, much more!

catalyst manuscipt

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Thoughts are Things and the Akashic Record ~ Excerpt from THE FIELD

Excerpt from The Field when Eric and Renee are discussing how ‘thoughts are things’ and the Akashic Record.

“What do you mean exactly that ‘thoughts are things,’ and what is the Akashic Record?” [Eric asks.]

She sighs. “I didn’t really want to get into this right away, but here goes. Just remember that you asked me. Thoughts are things means that our thoughts are energy; both creative energy and electrical energy. So when someone says that thoughts have power, they mean that your thoughts have the power to turn what you are thinking into reality and also that thoughts literally have power in that they are a source of energy that can be measured.”

“But everyone knows that thoughts can turn into something real. First you have an idea, then you act on the idea and then it’s real.” I know this isn’t what she really means, but I just can’t help playing devil’s advocate.

“That’s true, but the theory is that if a person is able to harness their thoughts and access the Collective Consciousness to focus on a goal or objective, then the step where action is required is skipped. The thought itself is what makes it happen.”

“As in ‘mind over matter?'”

“Pretty much, yes.”

“I guess I already know that on some level because of what happens sometimes to me in the goal and what I’ve read about studies done with athletes. So much of sports id mental. There was one study where they used three groups of athletes training for the same event.” I drum my fingers on the table, trying to recall the article. “Two of the groups used visualization and one just trained. The groups that visualized winning both performed better than the one that only trained – even the group that only visualized and didn’t train at all. They concluded that visualizing success was as important as training, if not more so. Still, the Collective Consciousness? What’s that?”

“The Collective Consciousness is all of the thought energy from everything in the Universe, like an underlying current of energy connecting everything together, and the Akashic record is like a vast library of all the thoughts and information that every existed or ever will exist.” She stops and looks at me for my reaction. I look down at her hand still clasped in both of mine. Her nails are perfect ovals and the skin covering the tiny bones and muscle and sinew that make up her hand is smooth and unblemished. I am reminded of how amazing even the things we take for granted really are. The human hand is at once beautiful and miraculous. It’s miraculous that we even exist at all, really. That the world exists. How different is it to consider that there could be truth to what she’s saying?

Thoughts are things. Currents of energy. A library of thoughts.

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“You could be tapping into the Collective Consciousness” ~ Dr. Auberge to Eric in THE FIELD

Eric and Dr. Auberge discuss the Collective Consciousness in The Field.

“It could be instinctive athleticism or that you are subconsciously reading the behavior of the other player, or,” Dr. Auberge pauses for emphasis, “you could be tapping into the Collective Consciousness.”

“What’s that?” I feel like The Twilight Zone theme song should be playing in the background.

“It’s called many things; the Akashic Record, the Universal Field of Consciousness, and by some, God. Many Eastern religions believe that we are all connected to each other and to what you could call God or higher consciousness by our thoughts and that thoughts have power, or even energy. Science is just now recognizing the power of thought. As you said, visualization is used frequently in sports, but there is much more to it than that.” I’m thinking that I am in store for a really out-there conversation with Dr. Auberge, but I’m saved when Renee comes into the kitchen and puts her hand lightly on my shoulder. I didn’t hear her come in so it startles me a little. The conversation with Dr. Auberge was getting pretty intense. At some deep level it resonates with me, but at the same time, thinking that there’s a Universal Field of Consciousness seems straight our of a science fiction movie. It’s hard to believe it could actually be real.

theFieldfrt2final

Spirituality is the Solution – What you can do to help the World

Neale Donald Walsh, author of the Conversations with God books has written a new book, God’s Message to the World – You’ve got me All Wrong. In an article he wrote about the book in Watkins MIND BODY SPIRIT magazine he concludes  “What we can’t seem to see, or are simply refusing to admit, is that the problem facing humanity today is not a political problem, it is not an economic problem, and it is not a military problem. The problem facing humanity is a spiritual problem, and it can only be solved by spiritual means.”

But what kind of spiritual means? In my novel, The Field, the main character is connecting to the collective consciousness or The Universal Energy Field, what you might envision as the thought energy of every human being, and possibly every other kind of being, in our world and in the Universe. This energy connects us all to one another and connects us all to God, or The Divine, because it is part of God just as God is part of us and in everything in the Universe.

Lynne McTaggart talked about it in her non-fiction books entitled The Field: The Quest for the Secret Force of the Universe and The Intention Experiment: Using Your Thoughts to Change Your Life and the World. We learned about it in the movie The Secret but the movie didn’t focus strongly on the important element of spirituality.

In essence – our thoughts are powerful when used with a spiritual focus. Studies have proven that prayer can affect the health outcomes of cancer patients. Even if they are prayed for by someone who doesn’t even know them.  In McTaggart’s book The Intention Experiment, she gives multiple examples of situations where thoughts and intentions actually change events and outcomes.

Other studies have shown that our fights against things – the War on Drugs, the War on Poverty, the War on Terror, campaigns against bullying – actually cause those problems to increase! As Mother Teresa said “I will never attend an anti-war rally; if you have a peace rally, invite me.” What you focus on becomes your reality, so we need to focus on what we want, not what we don’t want.

Quantum physics has proven that everything in the Universe is connected at a subatomic level, which means that we are all connected to one another. What physicists can’t explain is how we are connected. It is the Unified Field, the noosphere, the collective consciousness – God- that connects us all. Everyone and everything. Neale Donald Walsh also says “The biggest misunderstanding of all is humanity’s idea that human beings are separate from God.”

So that brings me to what you can do to help change the world. I know that many, many people want to have a positive impact, but feel powerless or don’t know how. You are more powerful than you know. Your thoughts have power when combined with spirituality. Pray for peace. Meditate for wisdom for our leaders. Envision prosperity and universal love. Pray for healing for the Earth. Ask for help from Divine Source in raising your consciousness. Find other spiritual seekers and connect with them. Now is the time. We are awakening. Blessings to you all.

Work in Progress – Aliens and Earth in Crisis

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

Why I Wrote THE FIELD

The idea behind The Field came from several different places. The first influence was metaphysical. We all experience it. The hunch that turns out to be true, running into a friend that you were just thinking about, the answer to a question you were pondering popping into your head or an eerily prophetic dream. I wanted to tell a story about a regular person, a normal person, who was having these types of experiences. Most of the YA paranormal stories that I read are about teens who are extra-ordinary in some way. They have special powers that no one else possesses. In The Field, Eric is an ordinary high school soccer player who is experiencing something more. He’s connecting to The Universal Energy Field and the Collective Consciousness; something that I believe we all can do.

The second influence was all of the disaster, post-apocalyptic literature out there. I like a good dystopian story as much as the next person, but I was starting to feel as if all we could see in the future was doom and gloom. I’d like to think that we are better than that. Certainly bad things happen and bad people exist, but why not focus on what is good? It doesn’t have to be sappy or boring, either. And it isn’t necessarily easy. Eric struggles with figuring out how to tap into The Field, how to play well in the goal, and in his relationships with his girlfriend and best friend.  And it doesn’t end with him having all the answers. The process is what matters and what he learns is that he’ll never know everything and that it’s not important. He just needs to know that there is something more out there than we experience, if we just take the time to pay attention.

Environmental issues play an important role in my writing as well. I have a degree in biology and while I didn’t pursue science as a career, I am still very influenced by it. The earth is our home and I believe that we should take care of her. We live in a throw-away culture, not thinking about how our plastic bottles or lawn fertilizer will affect the world around us. I think the time is fast approaching when we’ll have to take notice. Really, it’s already here. In The Field I focus on so-called ‘Clean Coal’ and to some extent nuclear energy and compare them to other truly clean energy sources such as wind or solar and then I take it a step further. What if The Universal Energy Field is a source of energy that we can tap into? How would we do it? What is it? I don’t mean to claim that I have the answers, but there are brilliant scientists who are trying to find those answers. Again, it comes back to my belief that there is so much more in the Universe than we perceive or even imagine.

The soccer focus came naturally. Both my husband and son are soccer goal-keepers. Our son is still playing club soccer in college and my husband has coached travel and high school soccer for years. You could say that I am a soccer mom, but I wish you wouldn’t. Really. Even though I do have a van. And live in the suburbs. I will say that watching your son dive at the feet of a sprinting, teen-aged boy intent on scoring is the worst kind of torture. Let’s just say that my stomach was in knots most weekends and I spent a lot of time in the bathroom at games from nerves! In fact, our son recently sent a text message picture of himself with a broken nose from playing soccer while my husband and I were on vacation. At first we thought he’d been mugged or in a fight because there was no message accompanying the picture. Do you know what he said when we called him in a panic? “I made the save!” I did actually play one season of women’s league soccer myself, but after being drilled in the face with a ball and knocked completely off my feet, I was glad to discover that I was pregnant and could no longer play. (Okay, it was a long time ago, but I remember it like it was yesterday. My team wore pink socks. So not my color!)

Exploring these ideas through the vehicle of story presents a unique opportunity. In fiction, I can make things up (which I love), but I can also present new ideas in a way that is more accessible and approachable. 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.

Goodreads ARC Giveaway

My Goodreads Advance Review Copy giveaway for THE FIELD is open! It will run from Tuesday, June 18th until Tuesday, July 9th. I’m giving away 20 copies (yes, you read that right, 20 copies) in exchange for a review posted on Goodreads. SIGN UP TO WIN! One of my friends always says “Free is Good” and so is getting a copy of THE FIELD before everyone else!

IDL TIFF file

This is a picture of deep space taken by the Hubble telescope. Scientists pointed it at a place in space the size of a grain of sand held at arm’s length that they thought was EMPTY and left it to gather light for a week to see what they would find. What they found was over 10,000 galaxies. These points of light aren’t just stars, they are GALAXIES each composed of billions of stars. In a point the size of a grain of sand. Mind Blown.

In THE FIELD I explore the idea that there is much more out there in the Universe than we can see or even fully understand.

Here’s a little excerpt teaser from THE FIELD:

To set up the scene – Eric is over at Renee’s house for a ‘homework date.’ She’s not ready yet, so he has to hang out in the kitchen with her father, Dr. Auberge, a prominent physicist who’s running thought experiments that Eric has participated in. 

“Ah, hello. It’s Eric, correct?” Dr. Auberge says. “You must be here to see Renee.”

“Yes, sir. We’re doing homework together.”

“Well, come in, then.” He holds open the door for me. “Renee!” He calls up the stairs, “You have a visitor!”

“Okay, I need to clean up my paint and brushes. I’ll be down in a minute.” She replies from somewhere on the second floor.

“Come back to the kitchen. No telling how long a minute could be.” Great. One-on-one time with dad. You’d think that I’d jump at the chance to get in good with him because of the internship, but I’m pretty sure that dating his daughter isn’t one of the selection criteria. Might even count against me. “Would you like something to drink? Water, soda?” asks Dr. Auberge.

“No, thanks, I’m good.” I find a spot to stand by the kitchen table and try not to look too uncomfortable.

“Please, sit down,” he gestures to the table and pulls out a chair for himself. I sit on the edge of the chair nearest me, nervous because I’m wondering if I’m going to get the ‘potential boyfriend’ grilling. I want to be ready to jump up and leave as soon as Renee comes down, but he says, “Stephen told me about your results on the remote viewing study. Impressive for your first session without any training. Also, the fact that you and your friend are not a ‘couple’ in the strictest sense. One or both of you has a very well developed enhanced consciousness.”

Here’s the enhanced consciousness again. “Uh, what do you mean?” I stumble out. Not the direction I expected the conversation to go.

“Well, usually for subjects who have a high score initially, we find that it’s not the first time they’ve experienced enhanced consciousness. It might be that they have premonitions or maybe coincidences occur frequently for them. Or it could be more like feelings of deja-vu or dreams or that they are more perceptive of the feelings of people around them. Most likely other things, too, that they aren’t even fully aware of.” I just stare at him for a minute. I think my mouth might even be hanging open.

“Is that true for you?” He looks at me inquiringly. It’s as if he knows something about me that I didn’t even fully recognize myself. I’m a little apprehensive, but also curious.

Cautiously I say, “Yeah, I guess I’ve had some of those things happen, but I’ve never thought much about it,” I try to shrug it off.

“What sort of things do you experience?” He’s leaning back in his chair, apparently having a casual conversation, but the way he’s focused on me makes me think that he’s intently listening. I figure I might as well tell him about the soccer stuff.

“Sometimes when I’m in the goal, it’s almost like a thought pops into my head, and I suddenly know where the shot will be going or which way I should dive. I’ve always thought it was athletic instinct or something like that. I’ve tried out some sports psychology stuff about visualizing the outcome you want, so I figured maybe it had something to do with that.”

“It could be instinctive athleticism or that you are subconsciously reading the behavior of the other players, or,” he pauses for emphasis. “You could be tapping into the Collective Consciousness.”

“What’s that?” I feel like The Twilight Zone theme song should be playing in the background.

“It’s called many things; the Akashic Record, the Universal Stream of Consciousness, and by some, God. Many eastern religions believe that we are all connected to each other and to what you could call God or higher consciousness by our thoughts and that thoughts have power, or even energy. Science is just now recognizing the power of thought. As you said, visualization is used frequently in sports, but there is much more to it than that.” I’m thinking that I am in store for a really out-there conversation with Dr. Auberge, but I’m saved when Renee comes into the kitchen and puts her hand lightly on my shoulder. I didn’t hear her come in so it startles me a little. The conversation with Dr. Auberge was getting pretty intense. At some deep level it resonates with me, but at the same time, thinking that there’s a Universal Stream of Consciousness seems straight out of a science fiction novel. It’s hard to believe that it could actually be real.