Website & Places you can find me online
Facebook Profile: Author Jenn Walker
Jennifer’s Book: Bubba Goes National
Facebook Fan Page for Bubba Goes National
Where I am
Tell us a little about you, what is your background & where do you come from?
I have lived in Northern California all my life. I knew I should grow up to be a writer when I was a teenager, but never got around to it.
A few years ago, I read a dreadfully written book about horses and decided that I could do much better. I hope I’ve accomplished that!
Did writing or horses come first?
Considering I work in a dressage barn during the day, horses! Writing is a secondary income for me, however, and I usually get on the computer and get to work as soon as I get home from my day job.
Tell us a little about your book Bubba Goes National.
I think of Bubba as a Cinderella story–if Cinderella were a horse!
The main character, 13-year-old Leslie, is the daughter of a widowed man who can’t afford to pay for horses. She works at a training stable to earn lessons and money, and saves up enough to buy an Arabian gelding she finds at the livestock auction.
It turns out he’s very talented, and they end up going all the way to the National Championships together. A dream come true!
What inspired you to write it?
I brainstormed ideas with some friends in an Arabian horse chat room, but I think the story was inside me all along. Leslie is a lot like I was growing up (sans the single parent part)–although we had horses, we were never rich and we had to do everything on a shoestring.
When I qualified for Nationals my last year as a junior (and the last year I could show in Equitation in Arabian land), two of the local horse clubs helped me hold fund raisers to get there. I took a bus and did everything as cheaply as possible. I had the time of my life! Leslie’s path is a bit different, but there is a lot of me in her…but she’s a better rider!
What is your favorite book ever?
I think Horse Play by Judy Reene Singer. It is absolutely hilarious–I read it three times, two of those in succession. I almost never even read a book twice. It is part of what inspired me to work as a groom, despite the fact that I’m in my late 30s.
Do you (or did you) have an animal that is the muse behind your writing?
Not in general, but when I picture Bubba in my head, he’s a lot like my old show gelding from my youth…only a lot more talented!
What effect do you think the Internet has had on writing & publishing books?
I think the Internet has had a profound effect on writing and publishing. It has made this profession/hobby more accessible, made it easier to find agents and publishers, provided quick and easy means of getting published (particularly online), allowed for networking like never before…but because of that, I think there is a lot more poor quality writing out there. Just like any other craft, writing needs to be learned and cultivated in order for the writer to be successful. Not that I’m perfect, by any means, but I have studied on my own a lot and worked with a mentor to improve my writing (a mentor I found via the Internet).
Bubba Goes National as you read it today is MUCH better than the original version I finished a couple years ago, thanks to some brutally honest critiques and much rewriting. I am a writer because of the Internet!
Google my name, and you’ll find my work all over the place.
How have you used it to promote your book & writing services?
The Internet has been tremendously helpful in promoting my book and writing services. Having my name out there on various sites–my website, blogs and various content sites I write for–makes it very easy to find me. Going the other way, It’s been easy to find outlets to pitch my book to, post press releases and so on. There’s far more I could do, if I could just find the time!
What else are you passionate about?
I’m also a professional ballroom dancer. I teach and perform in various places around the greater Sacramento, California area. I love to get out on a Friday or Saturday night and dance the night away!
Working on anything new?
I have two sequels to Bubba Goes National nearly completed, plus I have a grown up women’s fiction (also about horses) that is ready for editing. I want to get at least one of those finished and ready to publish later this year, and it would be great if I could finish two of them. I’m going to focus on that rather than starting yet another novel, although when National Novel Writing Month rolls around in November, I will probably be roped in yet again to write another book!
More to Come
Thanks to Jennifer for answering the interview and sharing her work. Be sure to check out her writing website periodically to keep up with her recent writing.
Also stay tuned for more interviews with horse artists, photographers & horse authors.
Are you a horse artist or do you know an equine artist, photographer or author you’d like to see featured? Add your name and website in the comments below or drop me a note to get involved.