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Jessie Haas, Horse Expert

As I finish the first round of edits for Storey's Horselover's Encylcopedia, which I'm editing and updating, I'm daring to wonder--is it time to call myself a horse expert?

I don't know everything about horses. I can ride, I've saddle-trained 3 horses, owned 4, cared for 6, but when the going gets tough this girl gets off. Hey, even the great John Lyons says that's okay!)

But I have written over 35 children's horse books, including the comprehensive nonfiction book Horse Crazy, which won the American Horse Publications book award. I've fact-checked Horse Heroes for Magic Tree House. I've written a world history of horses in poetry. I've written captions for Workman's Horse Gallery 2016 calender, and am just about to start 2017. I wrote a pioneering book on horse safety, and I'm finishing an encyclopedia, and you know what? It's time to name it and claim it. Jessie Haas, Horse Expert.

Don't stack me up against a smart 4-H kid in a Quiz Bowl. I think I'll always have to look up normal t-p-r rates. I rarely get horses in the correct order in those judge-the-horses photo contests.

But I know the smart questions, and how to avoid the ignorant mistakes. I know how to find stuff out, and how to hit a deadline. I know how to draft a sentence so it's crystal-clear. I can write a riding scene that will make a nonrider feel like she's just had her first lesson, on a real horse.

And I love horses. I've loved them passionately, all my life. I love their looks, their sounds, their smells, the feel of riding them, the sweetness of feeding them, the mystery their thoughts and feelings.

And I love horse books. Horses and the written word, my sweetheart and my cats and dog, family and the farm -- and good wine, and something nice to eat with it. There you have me. Jessie Haas, horse expert. Humble horse expert, who knows she still has a ton to learn and always will, but who's willing to take on any interesing horsey project that comes my way.( Read More 
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