Sunday, June 28, 2015

Stephanie R. Corum, Arabian Finish Line Magazine, Equestrian & Author


 
Stephanie R. Corum has been devoted to horses ever since she first read Walter Farley’s The Black Stallion when she was a child.  Stephanie has competed in hunter, jumper, equitation, and eventing, but now concentrates mainly on dressage. Her current partner is an Arabian/Dutch Warmblood mare named Nadia’s Jewels. Stephanie has a Master’s Degree in Animal Science from the University of Kentucky where her focus was on equine genetics. She has spent many years working on horse farms as well as for The Jockey Club Information Systems, the Arabian Jockey Club and the Arabian Racing Cup.
 
As a freelance writer, Stephanie has written hundreds of articles on all facets of the horse industry and in 2014 she took over the publishing of Arabian Finish Line magazine. In 2008 Stephanie tried a different venue by publishing her first children’s story, Goats With Coats and followed that up with Antics in the Attic. She's had a fun time reading and speaking to groups from pre-schoolers to elementary kids, teens and adults. She currently lives in Frederick, Maryland USA with her husband, dog and three cats, and her horse is boarded nearby.
 
 
 
Welcome Stephanie!
 
What is it like to be Editor of Arabian Finish Line?
To be honest, I’m publisher, editor, accountant, subscription manager, gopher, etc. So I wear many hats and do many jobs, but I really enjoy it. I have the opportunity to carry on the established legacy of this magazine, which has been published since 1987. It is a niche publication but one with a very loyal and passionate audience. I love being able to write about, read about and promote these beautiful horses. I love being an entrepreneur and working for myself, but it can get stressful at times when there is so much to do and only a limited time and budget with which to do it.
 
Who is the top Arabian racehorse in the world?
I’m going to answer this with the top Arabian racehorse in the United States. I would say it is Paddy’s Day, a bay 4-year-old colt. He’s won 3 of 4 starts so far this year (and finished second in the other start) and has faced tough competition. He’s already won in Texas and Colorado this year and is heading to California next. The reining Horse of the Year, Valiant Boy SBFAR, has raced once this year and that was a good second place in Dubai at the Kahayla Classic (G1) on Dubai World Cup Day. He could certainly be right up there whenever he runs again.
 
Do you have a favorite Arabian racehorse?
This is a tough question to answer. I’ve enjoyed watching so many of them. But I will have to say, strictly from an emotional standpoint, that a filly named I’m Awesome Tu captured my heart. She was a beautiful black filly – certainly talented but not a champion. She struck me because of her beauty and presence. It was something special.
 
What sets Arabians apart from other breeds?
I think they are magical in part because the breed is so old. They are one of the first horse breeds and the foundation of so many others. And over these hundreds and hundreds of years, Arabians were bred to be personable horses. You hear stories of how they lived in the tents with their owners in the desert. The way an Arabian wants to connect with their human is beyond anything I have encountered with any other horse. And they are smart – incredibly smart. I often say that Arabians are smarter than the people that work with them and that in part gives them a bad reputation. They are sensitive, intelligent creatures that require you to work with them – not make demands of them. They want to be your partners and will hold you to a higher standard. To me personally, I love that.
 
What are you currently writing?
I have just been asked to write the preface to a book about the Arabian racehorse Orzel. I’m also working on my third children’s book and of course the magazine is always requiring me to write a variety of items.
 
Who is your favorite equine author?
I’ll have to go with Walter Farley. Like any number of horse racing fans, I fell in love with The Black Stallion as a child. I guess I never grew out of that.
 
Congratulations on your success as a children's literature author!
Is Goats with Coats based on your personal experience?
As a matter of fact it is. When I had my own farm I had 2 goats as natural weed-eaters. The first winter I had them when it got really cold I saw them shivering. I told my friend about it and said they needed coats. Then I thought “Goats with Coats”, that sounds like the title of a children’s story. So I went with the title and then came up with a story to go around it.
 
When was your first encounter with a horse?
The first encounter I remember was when I was eight years old and I went for my first riding lesson. I was shown how to put on a halter and went into the stall to halter a Shetland pony named Jasper. He promptly stepped on my foot and stood there. I had no idea what to do, but luckily my instructor came to my rescue and got the pony off my foot. I learned from an early age to always wear appropriate footwear around horses!
 
Do you have advice for novice riders or someone seeking to purchase their first horse?
Find good quality people from which to learn. People who know about lots of different breeds, different styles of riding, people who know horses – not just how to ride. Don’t rush into anything. Take your time, trust your instincts and get the advice from someone you trust who knows more about it than you do. I could write an entire book on this, but these are the most important things to remember.
 
What does horsemanship mean to you?
It means knowing and caring for every aspect of that horse. Putting your hands on the horse and knowing when something is different. Knowing your horse so well that you can visually tell when something is wrong even if no one else can. Knowing about anatomy and physiology, training, groundwork, riding, nutrition, fitness. Being a fair and equal partner to the horse and always keeping the health and welfare of the horse in mind. Being firm but fair. Understanding that you will never know all there is to know about horses and being open to learn more from other people and other horses. Never ever letting your ego or your emotions run your relationship with your horse.
 
Connect with Stephanie…

Friday, June 26, 2015

Last Light Falling - The Covenant by J.E. Plemons


When the Lamb opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature say, “Come!” I looked, and there before me was a pale horse! Its rider was named Death, and Hades was following close behind him. They were given power over a fourth of the earth to kill by sword, famine and plague, and by the wild beasts of the earth.
— Revelation 6:7-8


Last Light Falling – The Covenant, Book I

“In this epic four book series, faith will determine the fate of those born into the darkest period of history.

For Gabriel and Arena, life has been short of exciting, but when they receive a mysterious letter on their fifteenth birthday, history will forever change. Nations have fallen, economies have collapsed, and half the world's population has been wiped from the earth. The prophecy of the end is near and it's up to Gabriel and Arena to help prepare the world's demise by the wrath of God. Souls will rest in the providence of these ordinary twins put in an extraordinary situation, but when fate chooses them, they will have to accept their destiny changing their lives forever.”

Enter for a chance to win an autographed copy of Last Light Falling - Into The Darkness, Book II. Winners will be chosen at the end of the giveaway and will be notified by email.

Connect with Plemons…

Plemons is available for interviews and appearances. For booking presentations, media appearances, interviews, and/or book-signings contact jplemons@lastlightfalling.com 

Biography
Jay Plemons’ life is nothing short of ordinary. From an aspiring chef, carpenter, educator, musician, husband, and father, nothing ever seems too busy when adding yet another hat into the mix as a fiction novelist. With a degree in music business, and a minor in English from Middle Tennessee State University, the aspirations to continue his journey in the arts, has followed Jay to write the Last Light Falling series, which has not only touched on some of his personal experiences, but has also helped him further explore the heightened convictions of faith. Though his first love is music, writing has profoundly changed the way he expresses himself to others, which has recently impacted his son to follow in those same emotional footsteps. When Jay isn't drumming, writing is his cure to life's distractions.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Tim I. Gurung, Novelist & Philanthropist

From Nepal, now living in Hong Kong, welcome novelist Tim I. Gurung! The author of six published novels, Tim is announcing novels seven and eight to be released in 2015!  A world humanitarian, philanthropist and writer, Tim is a regular contributor to HKE Journal, as well as an avid blogger, and much more!

Tim writes, “Writing has always been in me; the joy and satisfaction I get from writing are not possible from anything else. I genuinely feel at home only when I am writing; it is an excellent gift the Almighty bestowed upon me and I cannot waste it. I needed to use it for good and I have no intention whatsoever to write for fame or fortune. I write for good, for society and for the people.”

Of your six novels, which is your favorite?
It is very hard to tell which one is my favorite; it is like asking a mother which of her child is her favorite. But I thought that my 3rd book A Tree called Tenalpa was a perfect novel, I tried to squeeze all the colors of people in this world in just one book with their problems and use tree as the allegory of the world. But the people might have different ideas, especially in the western world, the problems of racism and migration are old but here in Asia it is still new and persisting. 

Are your characters/storylines based upon your own life experiences?
All of my books are based on genuine issues, as I write on global issues, and my books are based on real issues. Of course, I create the story and characters out of my own, but the issues are real. I think by knowingly or unknowingly, we create characters mostly out of our own experiences, if you don't know them, it will be very hard to create a new character and in that case, it will not be justice to them. 

Who is your favorite character?  
I don't have any special liking or disliking to any of my characters, yes, some have true connection with your own life, but mostly they will go away from our mind as you will have new characters coming, and the strong feeling you did have while writing will eventually evaporate. So, I don't have such as favorite ones as I write it now.

You write to subsidize your charity foundation. What is your charity?  
I always wanted to do something that is more important and meaningful in life after I turned fifty, I simply didn't want to work for money and I always wanted to help others. My charity is called ISSLCARE Foundation LTD and it helps finance poor family in Nepal so they can send their children to school. I already started it with my home town, got eight schools involved and sponsoring 25 children as of now. My campaign will start expanding to other parts of the country and eventually cover the whole nation. That is the ultimate aim, as I don't accept donation or raise fund from others, the only way to help me is through my books and I have a plan of completing it during my lifetime.

Nepal
From Nepal, but now living in Hong Kong. Will you return to Nepal to live?
Yes, I live in Hong Kong now, but I have people in Nepal who can help me, I will create a team of my own in time as I grow and they will eventually complete my project. Of course, I will go there time to time, but definitely not for living.

The recent earthquake in Nepal left so many in need. Have you returned to see the damage?
It was a very unfortunate event, the earthquake has affected many people and more help is definitely needed to rebuild the nation again. No, I didn't go there, but I have friends and relatives who have been there and they kept us informed about all the details. It was a very sad event, many have lost their lives and livelihood and I am sure that my helps are much more needed in the coming future.

Describe your writing studio...
I just have a small room with a desk, computer and some books of my own. I still commute here as a day job, I still have to look after my son who is taking care of the family business and guide him if necessary. During the office hours, I do write, check my mails, run my charity and do other stuff.

Do you have a muse or driving force that fuels your creativity?
I think it is a gift for me from the almighty one, writing come very easily for me, luckily I don't have to use it for a living and I am doing it for as a pleasure or for a good cause, so, it is not a big deal for me and I just want to use this for good cause so it won't be wasted.

What are you currently writing?
I have already finished writing my 7th & 8th book, they are in editing phase now and I am writing my 9th book now. But due to marketing responsibility of my published books, I have to write a lot of articles, blogs, update social networking sites, and follow up my ads. Therefore, I am a bit busy now so writing my book has taken a backseat.

Who is your favorite author?
I don't have one as I am not crazy about it, but I like Marquaz, Rushdie and Murakami. I have read at least one book of all the Nobel Laureates but they seemed not that good as I had hoped for. 

What are you currently reading?
I have no time to read any books, I have subscribed 4 magazines and I have to find time to read them, and I am so much so busy with my other jobs at hand, I simply have no time to read any books.

Do you have advice for novice writers? 
Although I have written 8 books, I still think I am a novice here too, I don't have that much experiences on talking with outside world, not many want to talk with new and unknown writer and I am not sure if I am qualified to give any advice here. Anyway, I think writing is a very slow, long and assiduous road, you need a lot of time, money and patience to be successful and as the market is so much so crowded, it is very hard to differentiate good from the bad ones. Therefore, don't leave your day job yet before you really make it outside of your own as a writer. 

Connect with Tim…

Monday, June 22, 2015

Friday, June 19, 2015

Peter J. Hurst, World Equestrian & Poet


Poet and equestrian Peter J. Hurst was born and raised in England. He has worked over 50 years dedicated to horses. A true world horseman, advocate for orphaned foals, now a published poet, Peter knows the value of horses. In 1997, Peter created Cyberfoal.com, a program dedicated to helping orphan foals obtain the colostrum they need to survive.

Recently Peter released his first poetry collection Horse Daze: My Time with Horses, which is inspired by horses and the people who care for them. Peter was unaware his love of horses would lead him to poetry that began during his long nights when foaling out mares. “I truly believe this book will appeal to many that involve themselves with horses and, who knows, may become a best seller in its field,” Peter writes.

Welcome Peter…

It is a great honor to interview you. Thank you for connecting and collaborating! Congratulations on your new poetry release! When did you begin writing poetry?
I really didn’t make a note as to when I wrote my first poem. I only know that one night in my boredom and needing to stay awake waiting for a mare to foal I occupied the time by writing words that rhymed about my time with horses and the people associated with them. It wasn’t until a few years back I decided to put those I wrote into a book for others to enjoy and relate to. My inspiration to write is often triggered when being around horses or just seeing others enjoying horses.

Please share one of your favorite poems from Horse Daze: My Time with Horses
I favor all my poems because each relates a true meaning, but the following takes preference as it makes a statement to a controversial issue… Slaughter is a process we all too often turn a blind eye, although I am not completely against it as we are the makers of our own demise but because our animals for consumption are labelled slaughter this should not give reason to inhumanly abuse them. They and our horses deserve some dignity, for without our horse we would not be where we are today. How soon we forget and how easy it is to excuse them as just animals. 

This poem I hope leaves thought to the next time a saddle is girthed or cinched…

BETRAYAL

We love our horses or so we say.
But how many horses do we betray?
The trust they have is honest and true,
something we find so difficult to do.
We enjoy the horses within our care,
when others slip by in troubled despair.
We love our horses or so we say.
So why so many do we betray?

When was your first equine experience?
I was thirteen when I became dazed by the horse. I was on holiday with my parents when I noticed a group of riders enjoying the beach and riding into the oncoming waves with their horses. Two days later I was enjoying the same and from there on became infatuated with horses.

Fifty years of horses and still counting. What has been the greatest event of your horsemanship career?
My greatest event was handling the stallions at Windfields Farm in Oshawa, Ontario, Canada where Northern Dancer was born and where my wife and I were employed working for Mr E.P.Taylor. 

Any horse would be lucky to be in your stable. What breed do you prefer?
I like all breeds, but Thoroughbreds are my preference because I have always been interested in their bloodlines and demeanor. I have only had one horse of my own and that was an Irish hunter that I would hunt to hounds and compete in hunter trials.

Do you have advice for novice riders and those seeking to purchase their first horse?
My advice to a novice rider would be not to trot before you can walk. To always be confident and enjoy the challenges you encounter. Learn from your horse and take advice cautiously.

Buying a horse is the easy part, caring for it is costly. I found it better to work for those that could afford them, this gave me the best of both worlds to enjoy them and be paid for doing so.  Sharing a horse and the cost is an alternative. 

Describe Cyberfoal.com and how we can help you to help orphaned foals...
Cyberfoal is the only internet free service helping horse breeders help horse breeders when colostrum is available or needed and nurse mares of the same. It provides a central location that if completely supported would leave no foal without colostrum or a natural companion.

The service is available 24/7 365 days and on occasion has been used by Australian breeders. The best way to support this voluntary service is to freely promote it to equine vet clinics and media. My policy is not to pay to advertise as I depend solely upon the good will of others to support it. Plus, I do it because I truly care for the orphan foals that receive little recognition for the hardship they must endure.

You are an inspiration to many; equestrians, poets, and more. Would you like to add anything else?
If this is an inspiration to others and especially those with type-one diabetes, being one myself since the age of nineteen. I have not allowed this misfortune to interfere with my commitment and involvement to my horse profession and by doing so has been fortunate to live a healthy existence thanks to the support of my horse associates. I am sixty-seven retired and yes miss my horses but you can never take the horse away from the man, when the man has fond memories of the horse.

What does horsemanship mean to you?
Horsemanship is to love, commit, understand and always be patient 24/7. Horse sense comes naturally if you are fortunate. Horses have always been my first priority and I have a family that understands those priorities.

Connect with Peter…

Biography
Peter J. Hurst’s Horse Daze began at a young age. The start to his career began at the age of 15 at White’s Riding Stables, London. As he grew older, his passion for horses took him to Buckinghamshire and The Old Berkeley Hunt as second horseman. From there, Peter became interested in Thoroughbred breeding where he was able to learn foaling and mare management and later to become stallion handler at Aston Park Stud, Oxfordshire, England.   

Working professionally with hunters, jumpers, and breeding thoroughbreds, his appreciation of horses increased, and he knew that he would spend his entire professional life taking care of horses in one capacity or another. With his vast horseman experience, Peter immigrated to Canada, employed to handle the stallions at Mr. E.P.Taylor's, Windfield Farms in Oshawa, Ontario. He then had the opportunity to move out west to the breeding division of Elmbrook Farms. Nr Edmonton, AB and later to manage Winsong Farm in Devon, AB. Peter’s last employment of twenty-one years before retiring was managing Clayborne Farm, for the Riddell family in Calgary, AB. Pete is now retired on picturesque Gabriola Island, BC, with his wife Terry and their two dogs, Skita and Abbey.  

Horse Daze: My Time with Horses is a collection of poems that examines every aspect of a life lived surrounded by horses—trusting, intelligent, and caring animals that will change your life if you let them. With accompanying photos that capture both their majesty and vulnerability, this is a collection that will more than satisfy the interests of anyone who already loves horses, and nurture enthusiasm in those who have yet to discover their appeal.


Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Fred E. Kunkle, Equestrian/Goldenwings Horseshoes

From USA, Fred E. Kunkle is an all-around equestrian as well as the salesman for Goldenwingshorsesoes.com. Fred has a lot of horse history and, as a farrier, knows the importance of good shoes.

Goldenwings are currently in the final phase of prototype testing in the Sonoran Desert to be sure the shoes will exceed the company’s 40 day/40 night 100% money back quality guarantee. Fred says, “This is the most revolutionary new horseshoe in over 2000 years.”

Welcome Fred…

Are Goldenwings for every horse, or just racehorses/Standardbreds?
Goldenwings have been designed for every horse with a rider. We expect them to benefit every horse of every discipline since they are as close to being barefoot as is possible and still provide protection for the hoof capsule. The benefits of Goldenwings…

·       Reduce overall leverage
·       Reduce Stone Bruises
·       Reduce Coffin Bone Injuries
·       Develop Stronger Hoof Walls
·       Increase More Natural weight distribution
·       Increase More Natural Shock Distribution
·       Create an evenly distributed Traction
·       Allow the Frog to perform its job
·       Prevent strain on suspensory ligaments, pasterns, tendons, shins, knees, hocks, stifles, shoulders, hips, and back
·       Reduce or eliminate lameness. Understand, from the hoof to the spine, less strain means fewer injuries and less lameness
·       Allow the hoof to flex according to the terrain
·       Eliminate the heavy steel, aluminum and other heavy unbending material that have been used on the horses’ feet to protect them from man’s intervention in their lives
·       Allow horses to perform with as close to a natural hoof as is possible, and yet, give them protection

Actually we have not tested them specifically on racing Standardbreds. I haven't raced Standardbreds since 2004. I have a Standardbred trainer wishing to try them on his horses as soon the prototype testing has been completed. He's involved with trotters primarily and has pacers occasionally.

Besides improving gait, what makes Goldenwings revolutionary?
Protection for the entire structure of the horse, not just the walls of the hoof capsule, with a light shoe (3+ ounces, little more than the amount trimmed from the hoof to set the shoe) with the ability for speed as well.

What material do you use to manufacture Goldenwings?
We are currently testing materials that duplicate the natural hoof properties.

How long did the research/development take to bring Goldenwings to market?  
We have been cutting, welding, and changing horseshoes since 1986 to improve gait and provide for interference issues with Standardbreds. We really became interested in designing a better horseshoe after problems with horseshoes and Thoroughbreds in 2001. The design trial and error has occurred with them along with cutting and roping horses, and trail horses here in Arizona. 

Can my farrier provide these new shoes, or are they custom made for every horse?
Our plan is to have them available through Farriers, Blacksmiths, Equine and Feed Stores, as well as online directly. Initially they will be available online.

What is the average wear time/reset stage for Goldenwings?
Again, the reason for the final testing, to determine if we can achieve one reset over the stony and rocky terrain here in the desert. If so, this may make them ok for two or more resets over ordinary terrain.

You are a trainer, farrier, racehorse owner, driver, horse expert and more. When was your first encounter with a horse?
On my grandfather's farm at the age of 5-7 with Belgian Horses, riding them, as well as learning how to drive them for his farming use.   

As a trainer, what training methods do you use?
We start slowly, repetition, and gradually increase the work load demand to be sure the horse is ready for the increase to do more, rather than me being ready for more and increase the work load and cause harm or injury to the horse. We let the horse decide when the time is right to get a little more.

And you've frequented the School of Hard Knocks?  
The School of Hard Knocks University provides the education one receives from reading, experimenting, bumping into obstacles, and then finding a way through the obstacle where possible. Many people can get an education from books; go to a University to specifically learn the successful ways to handle the situations within the field they have chosen such as accounting, etc. Both methods are expensive ways to be in the process of learning.   

Do you have advice for (any) horse owner?
Just as with success in life, it has been said, the secret of success is to treat others as you'd wish to be treated. I believe it applies to success with the horse also.

What does horsemanship mean to you?
The knowledge to have a horse perform a discipline to the best of its ability with the use of kindness. 

Connect with Fred and Goldenwings…

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Hadaa Sendoo, World Poet


Hadaa Sendoo, born 24 October 1961, is an internationally renowned poet; He is founder and leading figure of the World Poetry Almanac. His poems, which have been translated into more than 30 languages, have been included in The Best Mongolian Poetry.  In 2006, he established the critically acclaimed World Poetry Almanac. His early poetry is strongly influenced by the Mongolian epic and influenced by Russian imagist poetry, and Italian hermetic poetry of 20th Century.

Hadaa Sendoo is considered one of the great poets in the 21st century by critics. He received many poetry awards, including Mongolian Writers' Union Prize, The Poet of the Millennium Award (India, 2000); The Pinnacle of Achievement Award for poetry ( USA, 2011), Nosside Prize for poetry (Italy, 2014), and Visionary Poet Award (Canada, 2015).

As a poet, Hadaa Sendoo is included in the Celebrity Occupation-Poet, List of the Top Well-Known Poets and was included in the list of world-class national poet, and The World Heritage Encyclopedia. He is currently a consulting editor of the International Literary Quarterly.  He lives in Ulaanbaatar, capital of Mongolia. 

Welcome Dr. Sendoo… It is a great honor to share three of Dr. Sendoo’s poems. He writes with a deep feeling to horses and Mongolian wild horses, also known as takhi. He says, “I love riding on grassland.” 


{In the Woods} 
Mongolian wild horse 'takhi'


At last
I do not need gold
and silks. If possible
leave me a little forage
for the night, to feed my horse.
He too is tired

In the silence, give me
a golden sunflower
I'll walk among cicadas
and cuckoos singing
I do not regret I've loved much
I'm just sorry I
come too early, or too late 


{Perhaps I'm Resigned to Die Another Death} 

Wind gusts to the north
Dull withered trees...
Not like streams –
Clouds, wooden bridges

Night, grassland
In cheese-colored moonlight
More tranquil, though

The land
Bearing the howling diggers
Like eyes that hold tears
Keeping them from welling up

From my life
I don't expect much
except seeing wild horses* chasing the wind
Perhaps I'm resigned to die another death

* Mongolian wild horses, called takhi (Тахь) in Mongolian.


{Daybreak} 

At daybreak, when you came
Dewdrops were birthing too
The paling sky brought forth quivering life

I wait for my war horse, he’s bolted
I’m left walking barefoot
Through the towering stillness of the night