Judith W. Richards spent her career in the world of economics, finance, and real estate development. She is the author of Fundamentals of Development Finance: A Practitioner’s Guide (1983 by Praeger, later under Greenwood Press and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt), which for over twenty years was a highly respected handbook for financing risky projects in urban areas and was also used as a text book at prestigious universities.
Now, the author has turned her sights to fiction and her first love, history. Judy has just completed the manuscript of an action-adventure, family saga set in Amsterdam in the latter 1500s, a period of tumult and extraordinary achievements. She is looking for an agent to represent it.
Judy currently lives in Nice, France, with her novelist husband D. Manning Richards. During their peripatetic lives, they have resided at various times in Sydney, Australia, and in Paris, France. Northern Virginia is their base.
Fiction in Progress
The author has just completed the manuscript of a novel set in Amsterdam during the latter 1500s. The tentative title is “Amsterdam Ascendant: a novel of rebellion, faith, and daring enterprise that launch a Golden Age.” A sample cover is shown above. The story goes like this:
It is 1572, and the Netherlands is in open revolt against its ruler Spain. Amsterdam is surrounded by Spanish troops. Inside the city, an Inquisition is persecuting Protestants, starvation is lurking, and Calvinists and Catholics in the Van der Voort family are trying to stay alive. Meanwhile, sea captain Maarten van der Voort is with a rebel fleet fighting Spain’s navy. When Amsterdam is finally freed from the Spanish yoke, Maarten is reunited with his family. Together, they slowly rebuild their shattered lives and go on to create a vast sea trading enterprise, promote tolerance, and help usher in Amsterdam’s 1600s Golden Age.
Two sequels will take the Van der Voort saga into the mid-1600s. Family members will endure natural disasters and renewed religious bigotry, and also engage in epic voyages, creative financing, and the founding of New Amsterdam (New York City).