Monday, February 8, 2016

Cursed: An Urban Fantasy Novel by J.A. Cipriano

Riding & Writing is thrilled to be one of the stops on
J.A. Cipriano’s Blog Tour to celebrate his new book release today!

The Thrice Cursed Mage Book  #1
Available in eBook here!

The Thrice Cursed Mage Book  #1

My name is Mac Brennan and that’s the only thing I can remember about myself. Not why I woke up in a dumpster. Not why my right arm is as black as pitch and covered in glowing red tattoos, and certainly not why a vicious death cult is after me.

Actually, that last part isn’t true. I know why the death cult is after me. It’s because I saved that damned girl from them. I didn’t know who she was at the time, but I’d have done it anyway. I just don’t like it when girls get beat up, call me old fashioned.

Still, I can tell she’s hiding something behind those devilish eyes, and if I want to find out what it is, I’ll have to help her.

My name is Mac Brennan. I have no memory, and I’m a werewolf-hunting, hellfire-flinging version of Faust himself.

Genre(s): Adult, Urban Fantasy, Adventure
Release date: February 8, 2016

My Review
“Wait, did you say werewolf?”  Cursed has all the spins, thrills, and fantasy that make it a worthwhile read. Cursed begins with Mac Brennan coming out of a dumpster. He struggles to remember who he is, why he has a weird tattoo, and why he landed in garbage. He ditches the dumpster to heroically rescue a nearby woman who is in the throes of assault; he realizes he must save her…and he does. It’s a true urban fantasy/epic journey that will keep you entertained throughout. Bravo J.A.!

From the Author
“To receive the Lillim Callina short story, Alone in the Dark for free, subscribe to my mailing list at or just copy and paste... into your browser.  I love talking to my readers, so please email me at try to respond to everyone. Thanks for reading.”

When J. A. Cipriano was in second grade, his teacher gave everyone in class a journal to write down whatever they wanted. Their first subject was to write about something they didn't like. J. A. chose to write about why he didn't like writing. His reasoning was simple. He had bad handwriting. Even then, he was destined to be an engineer due to his messy scrawl.

Unfortunately, he found through the course of this little adventure that he actually liked writing. That year was sort of the high point for his writing career because he won a writing contest for the state. He got to go to a big dinner and his teacher was all dressed up.

He kept writing little stories, year after year, and in sixth grade, won another contest. In seventh grade, he broke his arm and got the cast signed by both Dean Koontz and Stan Lee. It is, by far, the coolest cast he's owned. That was about the time he found video games and anime. His writing turned mostly toward fanfiction until about ninth grade when he wrote his first novel, a small book about twenty thousand words called Revelations. In sophomore year, he wrote two more books to complete the trilogy because he saw Star Wars that year and learned trilogies were the cool thing to do.

He rewrote Revelations during his senior year, and his wife swears it is the best thing he's written. J.A. is not so sure. Every time he reads it, he cringes, but then again, he hates everything he writes, so there is that.

It was about that time, he got heavily involved in a fanfiction writing group, but that isn't one hundred percent accurate. It was a world based on a popular anime but everything was created especially for this world. It made it so that every story someone wrote was unique.

Imagine writing a Star Wars novel set 1,000 years after A New Hope, where everything that happened was a distant memory and you get the idea. You have the force, some distant memories of the past, and that's pretty much it.

He wrote about a million words (863K to be exact) for them before he decided to do his own thing. He wrote another novel. He put it in a drawer. He wrote another one that eventually became the basis for The Hatter is Mad. His next novel was Kill It With Magic, his first real novel. It's not bad, but it's bumpy. This is unfortunate because the books get loads better as the series progresses.

Since then, he's written six more novels, four of which are in the Lillim Callina Series, and one in the Abby Banks series. The other is stuck in a drawer for time undetermined. He's writing his next book now which is about werewolves fighting mummies in Ancient Egypt. After that, he will move onto Abby Banks 2. The Spy Within will come out in June or July. 

J.A. also has three chinchillas. Two of them are grey, and because of this, they are named Slate and Cadmium. The third is named Jet because he's black, and Jet is old English for black. See, creative. He also has a cat named Turtle. This does pose problems for his two-year-old from time to time.

Take the Cursed Blog Tour:
February 8 – 15

February 8th:

February 10th:

February 10th:

February 14th:

February 15th:

The Thrice Cursed Mage Book  #1
Available in eBook here!

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Mikhail Slutsky Photography

Mikhail Slutsky

Journey through the lens of photographer Mikhail Slutsky.

From landscapes, countryside, seascapes and cityscapes, to the intrinsics of life, Slutsky’s photographs will meld with your senses. Living in the San Francisco Bay Area, Slutsky expertly captivates and entices through his beautiful images.

A high-techie by day, an amateur photographer in his spare time, Slutsky invites you to connect with him on instagram and share his joy of life and all living things.

Slutsky writes, “Doesn’t matter how many days in your life. What matters is how much life is in your days.”

 Mikhail Slutsky 

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Horse Training with Bilger by Robert J Bilger Jr.

“Establish the best possible relationship and ride safely!”
Available in Paperback here!

by Robert J Bilger Jr. 

Anyone that has a desire to work "with" a horse can be a Horse Trainer. This technique is the perfect way to start a horse under saddle that has never been ridden! If you have purchased a horse that has already been ridden, this technique will make both of you much safer on your very first ride!

Bilger’s technique will create the perfect relationship and partnership with every horse; regardless of breed, age, size or riding discipline! There is 45+ years of horse training and behavior modification that has gone into the techniques in this book. Every technique has been proven to be successful!

About the Author
Bilger of Stallion Ranch and Round Table Friesians has been working “with” horses for over 45 years and has been training, breeding and raising horses for outdoor and cross country use for over 35 years!

Bilger’s training technique employs his vast knowledge of “what the horse thinks” and “how they will use” both their “raw instinctive” behavior and “learned behavior” when exposed to various situations! His training focuses on various outdoor riding venues for both pleasure and competition. Bilger has raised and started many horses for himself and others, however, his passion is in taking the “problem” horse with a few or many issues and “reaching” the horse’s psychological side; modifying the behavior issues; and ending with a very calm and controllable “partner” for the next rider or trainer !!

For almost 20 years, Bob Bilger worked with nothing but “problem” stallions and was successful in “reaching” every one; modifying its behavior, and enabling the stallion rider to go on and be under complete control!

Schedule a Seminar Here!

“Establish the best possible relationship and ride safely!”
Available in Paperback here!

Friday, February 5, 2016

Horse-Drawn Plowing with Farmer Brown by Jim and Linda Brown

by Jim and Linda Brown
New York, USA
Available in 4 ½ hour – 3 DVD Set here!

by Jim and Linda Brown

This is from the Master of Horse Drawn Plowing himself, Jim Brown has been selling for over 11 years. It is a must have for all. This is a 4 ½ hour – 3 DVD set. It will show you the do's and don'ts of plows and plowing in a simple, down-to-earth style.

You will learn…
  • What to look for when purchasing a used plow
  • How to assemble a walking plow piece-by-piece
  • When to replace the plow beam, frog, landside, shin, moldboard, point, jointer, and depth wheel
  • How to plow with two and three horses
  • How to adjust and use a walking plow and sulky plow to gain proper width and depth of cut in various soil conditions
  • How to adjust horizontal hitch, vertical hitch and line of draft, and how these affect the plow and cut
  • How to open a land
  • How to make the crown, dead furrow and headlands
About Jim and Linda Brown…
Settling in Hunt, New York, Jim and Linda first began in dairying, milking 25 cows, while raising two children. "Dairy farming taught us how to live on nothing, because we didn't have a lot," said Jim. "The horses provided extra income. They had to pay their own way for us to survive."

At this time, the Browns also decided to work as family care providers for the state of New York. For 20 years, the family hosted as many as five individuals at a time, and worked with more than twenty people in need. "Family Care taught us how to work with people, because we worked with so many," said Jim. This experience helped cultivate Jim and Linda's interests in teaching, which soon became an even bigger part of their lives.

Growing the Business:
The logging business that thrives today began with Jim skidding firewood in a nearby pasture. He learned the skills he needed through trial and error and patient advice from Linda's father.

Jim's interest in plowing took off in 1976, when he did a demonstration in Calidonia, NY, at "Old Fashioned Days." This experience was a springboard for teaching future clinics and demonstrations.

Now, with 11 Belgian horses on the farm, Jim and Linda travel to teach clinics on horse logging and plowing. Farmer Brown has ventured as far as Idaho, and continues to host clinics and visit farms and enthusiasts. Jim and Linda's business is known for selling plow equipment, effectively logging woodlots and providing the highest quality job for log buyers and landowners alike. "Our goal is that we've passed on this knowledge well enough so that each student can carry on this lost art," said Linda.

by Jim and Linda Brown
New York, USA
Available in 4 ½ hour – 3 DVD Set here!

Thursday, February 4, 2016

7th Annual Hats Off to the Horses: The Road to the Derby!

Custom Derby Millinery by Sally Faith Steinmann

Please join us once again for

The Seventh Annual
"Hats Off to the Horses: The Road to the Derby"
A Unique Online Derby Hat Auction Benefiting Old Friends

sponsored by
Custom Derby Millinery by Sally Faith Steinmann

The "Amazombie"
Place your bid now through February 11th

For the seventh consecutive year, MAGGIE MAE DESIGNS® of Cape Cod and Old Friends of Kentucky are teaming up again for an unparalleled online shopping experience that begins November 1st with their "Hats Off to the Horses: The Road to the Derby" auction. This unique Derby hat fundraiser is an annual event which features one-of-a-kind couture Derby hats created and donated by Sally Faith Steinmann of MAGGIE MAE DESIGNS® to benefit the retired racehorses of Old Friends.

Our first six years of the fundraiser have been a great success, and to date well over $26,000 has been raised for the retired racehorses of Old Friends Thoroughbred Retirement facility.

The fourth hat up for bid in our auction series honors multiple graded stakes and Eclipse award winner, Amazombie. Amazombie's victories in the 2011 Sunshine Millions Sprint, the Tiznow Stakes and the Breeders’ Cup Sprint at Churchill Downs earned him the 2011 Eclipse Award winner as Champion Sprinter. Amazombie was retired in 2012, and arrived at Old Friends in 2014 thanks to the efforts of Bill Spawr.

The “Amazombie” chapeau is up for bid from February 1st through the 11th.
Bid via eBay here!

Joe and Rosie Napravnik Carson modeling the "Amazombie" Chapeau
Created to honor CA-bred, 2011 BC Sprint winner and Eclipse Sprint champ, Amazombie.
The hat with full description and photos can be seen at The Amazombie Hat webpage.
View more of Rosie's photo shoot at vimeo.
To view some of the hats created in the past five years of this auction series,
 visit MAGGIE MAE DESIGNS® here! 

Sally Faith Steinmann
Images of Cape Cod Blog Address 
Hats and Horses Blog Address

Dark Blur by Lission Deams

Losing Your Life
Ghostly adult fiction…
Available in eBook here!  
 Connect here with the author on facebook

Losing Your Life    
By Lission Deams

In your everyday suburban, Alice Carter tries to ignore what she sees. Her parents drifting apart, her absence of any friends or companions, and the girl she sees in the corner of her eye. Alice always sees the same girl, a girl who looks like her, yet different. This girl has the same pale complexion, the same chocolate brown eyes, and the same dark wavy hair, yet only Alice can see her. She catches small glimpses of her when she’s brushing her teeth or turning around. This girl is dead. She drowned years ago.

As the story goes on, Alice learns that she had an aunt who died drowning that looks exactly like the girl she sees. When she tries to confront her, hears her whispering (and a creepy humming melody) that the truth isn’t hard to find. She finds out through a vision/dream that the girl didn’t drown as an accident, but was murdered.

Alice finds out it was her grandmother who killed her, because she was the illegitimate child of the affair her father had. Alice reveals this somehow, and thinks the girl will finally be at rest. The next day, Alice discovers that the ghost was playing tricks on her, and only wants to kill every member of the Carter line that she wasn’t a part of. As the rest of the family gets killed one by one (due to drowning), Alice discovers that the only way to get rid of her is to discover the girl’s real mother. The story ends with Alice as the last survivor, hearing the melody that means she is here.

Losing Your Life
Ghostly adult fiction…
Available in eBook here!  

Connect here with the author on facebook

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Carlos Tabernaberri: Whispering Acres

Good Horsemanship: An interview with Carlos Tabernaberri
by Gina McKnight

As seen in Florida Equine Athlete
December 2015 issue
No duplication without permissions. 

Carlos Tabernaberri begins each day thinking of horses. As a well-regarded trainer, he works with riders and horses to “establish cooperation through clear communication, understanding and trust to ensure improved performance and versatility, regardless of your preferred discipline.” 

Tabernaberri expounds, “As a trainer and educator, my focus is on the horses and people with whom I work to establish a foundation that will help them achieve their full potential. We should not be divided by discipline; we should be united by good horsemanship. Regardless of what we call it – natural, Western or English-style horsemanship – I truly believe there should be simply good horsemanship, which is about consistently considering the horse’s well-being first and foremost."

Conducting clinics around the world – from Australia to America – Tabernaberri’s motto is Help Ever, Hurt Never…

Gina: When was your first encounter with a horse?
Carlos: My first encounter with a horse was when I was very little walking to school, there were two runaway horses that were being chased by some Gauchos in Argentina where I grew up to age 14, and when I saw them bolting towards me I started running back. I can say as romantic as that may sound, that the horses caught up to me and instead of running on top of me, they slowed down not to run me over. So I guess they were looking after me though they themselves were being chased, so I could do my work in the future.

Gina: Do you favor one breed over another?
Carlos: I love all breeds, but like all, there are some breeds that I like a bit more - like the versatility of the Quarter horse and the heart and stamina of the Thoroughbreds.

Gina: What training methods do you use? Do you model another training method?
Carlos: I do not model myself on anyone and rather than saying I am self-taught, I say I am horse-taught as they are my greatest teachers. There is no one horse that has not opened the door for me to learn a bit more.

Gina: You are an advocate for bitless riding. I haven't experienced bitless riding, but hope to in the future. How do you begin to introduce a horse to bitless riding? 

Carlos: I advocate bitless riding not as a fad, but rather from a humane point of view. Metal in the mouth is almost a medieval tool of control. The transition to bitless is simple and well accepted by the horse. Any horse with a good foundation in training can go bitless under the correct direction of a good teacher. The horse accepts it straight away; the human is the challenge as always.

Gina: What type of clinics do you offer?
Carlos: My clinics cater from beginner horse and rider to advancing the horse and human. I am known as the Quarter horse of trainers in my versatility to conduct a clinic emphasizing the working horse to a more classical approach and foundations. It is in my Spanish and French heritage. I believe you train a horse as a handy working horse, solid and brave and then it can be an outstanding sports horse in a chosen field best suited for that horse.

Gina: Do you have a favorite horse anecdote to share?  
Carlos: Horse anecdotes, too many to mention but perhaps the first encounter the most memorable.

Gina: Describe your own stables and your horses...
Carlos: My horses are a Brumby mare (Australian wild horse), one of five orphans I trained after their herd was culled in the Northern Territory of Australia, and one of Australia's many cullings of wild horses. A Quarter horse mare, Lani, 20 now and my greatest teacher which I got as four year old horse termed "Crazy and Dangerous". Though she almost killed me many times, she has taught me all about dealing with so called difficult horses; taught me infinite patience and to dig deep, to be who I am today and understand horses in a non-biased way.

My gelding Sai, which I raised as a foal, another Paint mare featured in my latest facebook post, who was called dangerous and aggressive and once again with good understanding and horsemanship has become an outstanding willing horse; a welsh pony called Phoenix, which I started 16 years ago for my then young children; and the $1 horse I bought, who is featured on the cover of my book, who was going to be shot until I intervened and saved him from a bullet…another master teacher, too.

Gina: What are your views on the horse slaughter debate?
Carlos: The fact that I own and rescue and continue to work with so called feral horses that are slaughtered, my views on slaughter is straight and simple. Man has continued not only to work alongside horses for 6,000 years, but also abuse, dispose and eradicate due to poor management practices, understanding and lack of compassion many horses around the world.

My thoughts on it, pure disgust to destroy such a noble creature who has helped us conquer, explore, work the land and build nations but can easily be forgotten and disposed when they become a "so called problem".

Gina: Where do you like to ride for fun and adventure?
Carlos: I ride up the mountains here in my ranch, and while it is mainly all work related, anytime I am on a horse I do not see it as a chore, job or obligation, but rather as a noble cause and honor to sit on a horse.

Gina: For novice riders, what qualities should they look for when purchasing a horse?
Carlos: Advice for anyone purchasing a horse, show up earlier than arranged to view a horse so that the horse is not being worked hard before you get there, let the seller demonstrate all the things they claim the horse can do, be aware of alarm bells you may feel or hear, things that don’t feel right. Take an experienced horse person to assess and help you decide if the horse is right for you and do not buy on looks alone.

Gina: What does horsemanship mean to you?
Carlos: My horsemanship means the world, simply because I am striving hard to be a part of a good beneficial solution for horses and people, rather than become another problem for both due to misleading information out there.

Gina: Where is your next training event and how can we sign up?
Carlos: Finally people can keep track where I am by looking at my website and facebook page, and contact me by email if they are interested in running a clinic from a minimum of two days to five days for example. I am accessible and approachable, and reply to all messages myself.

Connect with Carlos
Photo credits to Marty Schiel, Photographer

As seen in Florida Equine Athlete
December 2016 issue
No duplication without permissions.