Believing In Reading

Senator Reilly, Read Across America

Senator Ed Reilly donating Believing In Horses for each elementary school in his district in honor of Read Across America Day

“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.”
Dr. Seuss (I Can Read with My Eyes Shut)

Today marked the 14th anniversary of Read Across America Day, and this year, I got to be part of the celebration!

Maryland State Senator Edward R. Reilly (R-District 33, Anne Arundel County), selected my novel, Believing In Horses, as his book donation for each of the 24 elementary schools in his district. Senator Reilly invited me to the State House in Annapolis to deliver the books with him during the Maryland State Education Association’s celebration of Read Across America.

The National Education Association’s (NEA’s) Read Across America Day, which falls on or around Dr. Seuss’s birthday annually, is the nation’s largest reading event. Senator Reilly and I will each be visiting schools to read and discuss Believing In Horses in a continuing celebration of Read Across America throughout the year. [Read more…]

Competition

Being new to the ranks of “authors,” I’m learning all the time. Sometimes this strikes me as funny, since one of the reasons I retired from the military was because I was tired of learning a new job every year or so.  But one of my recent lessons in writing has been the cooperation I’ve witnessed among writers versus the competition so prevalent among competitors in other professions and venues.

Writers truly seem to want to help each other. My foray into writing came to fruition due to just such encouragement. A stranger I met in Las Barrilles, Mexico, gave me the advice one of his writing mentors provided him: “Just write.”

I was fortunate to have come across a website which provided many of the tools, and positive support, to get started – www.write4kids.com. And I’ve since been lucky enough to join groups of other writers in forums such as www.jacketflap.com and to follow many writing blogs of interest. Maybe the formula is simple in that writers like to write, so it reasons there would be much out there in the written word…but there’s probably more to it than that. [Read more…]

Combining Passion and Work

I had originally planned to write more about the World Equestrian Games, but I can’t seem to get past something that’s foremost in my mind right now: having a passion for what you do. I attended the “Get Motivated, Inc.” seminar in Washington, DC, this week, and if you ever have the opportunity to attend one of these events, I’d highly recommend it. I attended because I had attended a similar event over ten years ago, and many of the speakers’ insights changed my life for the better. Both events stressed the importance of trying to find a way to combine your passion with your work.  [Read more…]

Reflections

Last month, I had the opportunity to attend Part 1 training for the Equine Assisted Growth and Learning Association (EAGALA).  According to EAGALA’s Vision Statement, “EAGALA is committed to setting the standard of professional excellence in how horses and humans work together to improve the quality of life and mental health of individuals, families, and groups worldwide.” (For more detailed information, please see www.EAGALA.org).

Significant differences between the EAGALA Model and other equine therapies include the team approach (a mental health professional, an equine specialist, and the horse), and the fact that NO riding is involved. When asked why EAGALA conducts equine therapy on the ground versus on horseback, one of the instructors replied, “You can’t see yourself in the mirror when you are sitting on it.” One of the reasons EAGALA uses horses in therapy and learning is because the organization believes horses mirror what they are seeing and the situations they are presented. [Read more…]