who am I, what am I doing in this box

I've been working on , among other things, the presentation I'll be giving at the workshop in February and realized I need to update (finish) my profile.

So who am I and why the heck do I think I have anything special to say about horses?
Well, I have to admit, I don't know that I have anything really different or astounding to say that you haven't heard before, or that you couldn't find elsewhere. The world is full of horses and horseman, and most horseman, like me, are more than happy to ramble on about their horses. Typically, the problem is getting them to shut up once you've got them started.

I think there are two things that make my input valuable. Not that my words more valuable than other horseman's, but simply useful in their own way.

One is that I've had horses a long time. Nearly 40 years now and while I've had some formal training, most of what I've learned has been through the school of hard knocks. Read that as - if there is a mistake to be made, I've probably made it. My parents were loving and generous, but not horseman and bought me a yearling stud colt when I was in the first grade. He lasted almost a year before he got dangerous enough they traded him in on the mature Welsh Shetland cross who is the one who raised me. ... fast forward to now: I've been riding AERC Endurance for 21 years this year, that is long distance (up to 100 miles) cross-country races, although it isn't PC to actually call them races. So I know something about galloping in an undisciplined crowd and also about being alone in the woods with a horse, and being on horseback for a long time.

And I've dabbled in a lot of different stuff, from arena shows to dressage to cowboy type stuff like rodeo and speed events. And we've done some medieval and western reenactment, so most of my horses are 'weapons' trained to some extent. I've used a lance and a bow and a gun from horseback.

And, because I trained professionally for years and because I'm a breeder have a reasonable sized herd, I've done a lot of this stuff on a variety of horses. Which is a lot crazier than doing it all on one or two horses, but it gives a slightly different perspective. And I've worked with lots of beginner riders, both child and adult

How this applies to writing?
* I can provide lots of fodder for all the mistakes and issues that make such wonderful conflict.
* I know the kind of things that can go wrong, some silly, some really horrific. I know simple ways to frustrate your hero.
* The basic stuff and the bigger issues are easy to Google. But I can answer the questions authors didn't know they needed to ask to help layer the details with believability.

My mission: should I choose to admit one. Is to get authors to characterize their horses instead of using the typical cardboard cut-outs.

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