Interview with Leslie McDonald

What was your inspiration for writing Journeys With Horses?
I’ve been extremely fortunate to be deeply involved in the horse industry for over 50 years. In that time, it’s been my pleasure to interact with a wide variety of people who have inspired me with their own personal “journeys with horses”. My new collection of short stories is a window into the experiences of some of those very special people.
How did you initially get involved with horses?
It all started with a red, wooden rocking horse named Champion who was stabled at the foot of my childhood bed. As far back as I can remember, I was afflicted with a serious case of horse fever. I have no idea where I caught it as no one else in my family had any affinity for horses.

A life with horses was the last thing my parents envisioned for their only child. But, ultimately, my determined passion to ride wore them down. When I was 8, I was finally rewarded with a series of lessons at a local stable where I lost my heart to a little bay school horse named Co-Co. He was to be the first in my life long journey down the barn aisle. The little girl in “Natalie’s Hands” is my childhood story.
What is your background as a horsewoman?
As a child, I began hunt seat lessons in the Chicagoland area, gradually progressing from head-to-tail group lessons to showing “A” circuit hunters and jumpers. Over the years my deepest dreams took wing, expanding my experiences into fox hunting, eventing and eventually dressage. As a U.S. Dressage Federation Gold Medalist, I am now solely focused on that discipline, training horses and riders from the basics through the FEI levels at my Full Cry Farm Dressage Center located outside Cincinnati, Ohio.
Talk about your other published books.
My first book, Tic-Tac, was written as an independent study project during my senior year at DePauw University. Upon graduation, I received a contract for its publication from Dodd, Mead and Company in NYC.

Unfortunately after that initial success, my writing had to take a back seat for quite a few years due to the time constraint demands of riding, skating and trade show production. In 2007, motivated by one of my students who is a horse breeder, we wrote Making Magic: Breeding and Birthing a Healthy Foal. Published by Half Halt Press, the book is a guide for the novice horse breeder that follows my experiences with my mare Anastasia on our journey to produce her and my first foal, Vivaldi’s Magic.

After Making Magic’s publication, I was on a roll. All my free time not focused in the saddle or teaching in the center of an arena was spent filling the lines of countless yellow legal pads with stories from the stable. The next published book was Down the Aisle in 2010 followed by Musings of a Horse Farm Corgi in 2012. I’m excited to see where the next book inspiration after Journeys with Horses will take me.
Published 2016-07-04.
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Books by This Author

Journeys with Horses
Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 40,500. Language: English. Published: August 1, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Anthologies » Short stories - single author, Fiction » Literary collections » Female authors
A captivating collection of stories that tell the tale of the sight, scent and sensations of stable life. Supported by artful photography, the stories resonate with anyone who has experienced the dreams, challenges and rewards of a journey down the barn aisle. From grooms to breeders, trainers to “horse husbands” as well as war heroes to childhood dreamers, the stories of triumph and tragedy.