Rich Wallace was born in 1957, in Hackensack, New Jersey. He grew up with six brothers and sisters and wrote even as a young boy, illustrating his own comic books. Rich preferred sport to school, and was particularly successful as a track and cross-country runner in high school and college.
Nonetheless, as a teenager Rich began writing extensively, keeping a diary in which he poured out his emotions. He also gained valuable experience by working on his school's newspaper, and his evolution as a writer continued at Montclair State College, where he took creative writing classes.
After college, Rich worked as a writer and editor, including as a senior editor at Highlights for Children magazine and as a newspaper sportswriter. Throughout this time, he continued his creative writing, eventually finding the right story and voice with the young adult novel, Wrestling Sturbridge, published in 1996.
Writing about sports and athletes comes naturally to Rich, and he still competes in Masters track and field. His adolescence is the period of his life to which he returns as he captures in his novels the emotions, struggles and triumphs of those years. Rich is the father of two sons and lives with his wife, Sandra, in New England. [Source]
Author's Comment: I’ve heard it said that most people who write for kids have a fixed point in their childhood where their most significant memories lie. A piece of them has remained that age, has continued to see the world through the eyes of that child. It’s where their emotions run hottest, where their impressions are most vivid.
For me that place is the high school years, the years of Ben in Wrestling Sturbridge and Bones in Shots on Goal. It’s the moments of absolute torture waiting for the girl to answer the telephone, or of gut-twisting anticipation just before a race. It’s the white-hot fury in the rush toward the finish line, the rare but deserved feeling of confidence when you step to the line for a game-winning free throw, and the satisfying range of emotions after a loss or a draw or a triumph. [Source]