Tag Along on Photo Walk to an Equine Farm as This City Girl Researches Horses for her Middle Grade Tale
What I know about horses:
I also spent a weekend at Tanglewood, a working horse farm in Southern Pines, North Carolina. Join me on easy hour’s drive down US1 from my writing den to explore that unique equine community and discover juicy factoids for Rosie’s and my WIP.
Horses are BIG animals.
They can sense energy from humans around them.
Horses often wear
for protection from pesky insects that plague them.
Mischievous horses even figure
out how to remove those masks!
Horses don't like to be petted
on the front of their faces.
Would you like it if somebody pat you on your nose?
Since horses can't see your hand if you pet their nose,
you will startle them, too.
And caring for them
labor of love.
Putting it All Together
Now for the synthesis of researching and writing!
Have a peek at how Rosie and I
weave our discoveries
into this draft scene from our work in progress:
Our protagonist, Olivia, and her friend, Isabella,
introduce new girl Candace to Olivia’s horse, Lucky.
“I was explaining the best way to pet a horse,” Isabella said, “but before I could finish, Candace reached over and petted Lucky in that small blind spot in front of his face. It startled him, so he bucked sideways.”
“There now, boy,” Olivia crooned, moving to Lucky and stroking him gently alongside his neck. “Candace is just trying to be friendly.”
“Your horse doesn’t like me,” Candace blurted. “He’s mean.”
“He’s just not used to you. It’ll take time for him to know you, that’s all,” Olivia said.
“Try a friendly horse handshake like this, Candace.” Olivia suggested. She stuck out her hand with fingers held down and slightly bent. “Hold your hand like this near Lucky’s nose. That way, he can smell your hand and get to know you.”
Unconvinced, Candace kept her distance, hands clasped securely behind her back.
Draft scene excerpt from Cat and Rosie's WIP
What's your experience with farm life or horses? What tidbits might you share about rural living and equines that Rosie and I could use in our tale? Any feedback on that draft scene above? (Hey, please contact me if you'd be interested in being a beta reader once our 150-page book is done this winter.)
All photos by Cat Michaels or Hub except where noted
Most grateful to Tanglewood Farms, Southern Pines, NC, and Dancing Horses Farm, Port Orchard, WA, for generously sharing their equine knowledge.
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