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The Horse Lover's Blog

Chico's Challenge is here at last!

It's been a long haul, but CHICO'S CHALLENGE, my middle-grade novel about a young Quarter Horse, is finally out as a paperback and a model and book set. Chico was raised on a suburban ranchette; when he gets a new owner and moves out to the range, he's mystified and frightened by those strange  Read More 
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Bramble and Robin, Maggie and Jessie: Horses Meet Girls

When I began BRAMBLE AND MAGGIE, now the first in a three-book series, I was just getting to know my new horse Robin. She most definitely had her "little ways." An unbroken three-year-old, Robin "didn't think poorly of herself," in the words of Cheryl Rivers, who bred her. I was heartbroken at losing Atherton,  Read More 
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So Write About Robin

I have finished all my projects, on time, under budget, without going nuts. Now I have no projects. NOW I'm going nuts!
So I'm thinking about a new novel, not wanting to start because I don't know enough yet. But I often used to start a novel knowing only the first sentence, and I  Read More 
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Click for Clarity

Round penning. I'll admit that I've never done it, and don't get it, and am not attracted. Obviously lots of people use it and have success. And I've seen Robin do it to Zeke, working him back and forth along the fence-line like an enormous calf until (her version) she chases him up the lane.
But I don't want to be another horse to my horse, and I don't want to be in a predator-prey relationship. I want to reach her mind, more the way I would with another human. I want to elevate the discussion. Clicker training, and clicker thinking, allows me to do this when I do it well, and I like having a horse who chuckles occasionally when she gets her cue. If I were better, sharper, more consistent, she'd be a better-behaved horse, but I'm refining my skills, and the conversation keeps getting more interesting. Read More 
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Better Blogger

I'm back in two weeks, not two years. I actually noticed that I never actually posted my last blog entry. I corrected the error. I'm improving. I deserve chocolate.
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Wicked Bad Blogger!

I'm shocked to see how long it's been since I posted anything on this so-called blog. Excuses? I've written 5 books in this period, and trained my beautiful Robin to be a fun riding horse. We took our first canter strides two days ago!
Bramble and Maggie is out, and going back to print after only two months, and I just finished the third book in the series. And the big Westminster history will be out soon.
What will I do with all my free time? Just possibly, I may post on my blog occasionally. Or maybe not. We'll have to see.
Thanks to all of you who have said nice things about my stories. You made my day! What I love best about being a writer (besides writing, and getting to take afternoon naps, and having time for horses) is knowing that somewhere, people I will never meet get several hours of pleasurable experience with a book of mine. What you make of it I will never know, but it's a thrill to think of you in your window seats, beanbag chairs or sleeping bags. Thanks for writing! Read More 
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Robin Rocks

Wow! It's November already. I've checked off a book about a Quarter Horse--CHICO'S CHALLENGE will come out with Feiwel and Friends in early 2012, I think--a new Bramble and Maggie book for Candlewick, and I've substantially finished a book about the Westminster Massacre that will come out with History Press next year.
And Robin? The  Read More 
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Riding Robin

This blog is a true picture of my life right now--I don't have time to write a blog! Why not? Well, I'm training Robin, a 4-year-old Morgan--and since I haven't ridden in over 2 years, the first rides took courage and creativity. I'm finishing the history of my town, an enormous project; finishing CHICO'S CHALLENGE,  Read More 
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To Claim Your Prize

If you responded to Win A Prize (and I Know Molly did!), please send me your mailing address so I can send you your pin. The glitch here is that this blog--set up by the Authors Guild--doesn't show me your email address, so I can't respond to you directly. I'm not Ms. Technology, so  Read More 
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Lick, Don't Bite

Robin and I still have our persistent problem of her biting me, or threatening to. I can't decide if it's compulsive--oral Morgan who must be always doing something with her mouth--or if it's something I'm actually training her to do due to my response (but I feel like I have to respond to protect  Read More 
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