Ann Beardsley

Hear Me Roar


Writer, Runner & Lover of the Galaxies
Harris Neck, Georgia

What makes you run—literally?
Mostly, I run because I like to eat. I was determined to be in better shape at age 60 than at age 40, so at 59, I started walking-running at intervals. Now I’m hooked. I run-walk our neighborhood streets, around and around when I’m training for a marathon.  I love the camaraderie of running friends, as when my sister and I ran Disney’s Dopey Challenge 5k together. And food, always food.

How did you become a writer and editor?
I have a nonscientific background. When I grew up, women were teachers, nurses, secretaries, and housewives, so I was going to be a secretary. That led into editing, and the American Physics Association was looking for an editor. I know nouns and verbs, and not much physics but somehow it has worked. I’ve worked with one of my current clients for almost 20 years now as a freelancer.

You want to go to Mars? We thought men were from Mars!
About 200,000 people applied to go on a one-way trip to Mars through Mars One. Each submitted a video explanation and then a phone interview. I was so into it, every time there was a rocket launch, I’d sit at my desk watching the video, while my hands pushed the desk back and forth, as if I were in a rocket ship suffering all those G’s as we left the planet. I made it down to the cut before 100, but that was it. They’re planning to land their first crew in 2032 but I might just be too old by then.

What inspired you and your colleagues to write the 2016 book Historical Guide to NASA and the Space Program? (Available
I wanted to do a book on Mars while I was still eligible for Mars One, but the editors thought it too narrow a subject and suggested I do one on NASA. I said, Sure and then found two co-authors, who knew more about NASA than I did, to help me write it.

What’s special about your Eagle Neck community lifestyle in McIntosh County?
Living at Eagle Neck (fly-in community) we can fly out the front door and kayak out the back door. And, who knew there’d be a trapeze studio in McIntosh County? There’s a wonderful quilt guild in St. Simon’s, our coastal roads are flat and great for running, so I’ve got everything I need right here.
If you could travel to a faraway place on earth, or run along the stars in space, where would you go?
In the Tesla that SpaceX just launched (assuming I had enough food, air and books). Can you imagine just flying through space, all the stars whizzing by?

Wow! You are an adventurer. What’s next for you?
Sailing! We bought a 1979 37-foot sailboat last year, took sailing classes, and then sailed to Charleston for the eclipse. Now I’d love to go to the Bahamas, where you can see the sandy shoals before you hit them!

“I’m ROARING about”
Minimalism: Having only the stuff around me that really brings me joy. I used to have a closet full of clothes I rarely wore. Now, everything in it makes me feel good. I used to have so much stuff around me, it was hard to see those things that truly meant something. Now, they’re front and center.

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