As I’ve been growing my business, I’ve realized that I should introduce myself a little better. So I’d like to start off with why I write…
Growing up I wanted to be an author. I’d write all sorts of stories, “self-publishing” my own books, and crafting stories to tell my family. In grade school I helped start the Raider Reporter, the newspaper for Our Lady of Mt. Carmel. It was then that I started to get interested in journalism. While attending Westfield High School, I took journalism classes and joined the Rock Release, first as a photographer/writer, then as the photo and managing editor. I did studies in photojournalism and an internship with the local newspaper.
I decided then that I wanted to study journalism in college and looked at attending either Butler University in Indianapolis or Murray State University in Murray, Ky. Murray State won out because I was able to be a member of the college’s rodeo and equestrian teams, study equine science and journalism, plus experience college and live away from home. It was probably one of the best decisions I had ever made in my life. I majored in print journalism (with a minor in equine science), was a member and president of the Society for Collegiate Journalists, photographer for The Shield (Murray’s award-winning yearbook), public relations for the equestrian team, and loved every minute. I knew I wanted to focus on working for magazines rather than newspapers and started looking at equine publications as a student member of the American Horse Publications.
Nearing graduation, I started freelancing. A friend of a friend was the editor for the Quarter Horse News, and I was lucky to start covering reining events leading up to the NRHA Futurity. That was how I fell in love with Big Chex to Cash, and event coverage. Upon graduation I moved back to Indiana and continued to freelance while looking for work. I completed an internship with Hoosier Park doing media relations during their fall Thoroughbred meet, while covering the NRHA Futurity in person for QHN. I was awarded the Brown Publishing internship for the AQHA publications family that next spring and moved to Amarillo, Texas, to learn under some of the best in the business, while working for the world’s largest breed registry. It was an experience I will always be grateful for.
I moved from Amarillo to Oklahoma City to work for The Reiner, NRHA’s official magazine, for a year before moving to Lexington, Ky. I wanted to live a little closer to family. I spent more than six years working with Blood-Horse Publications and their monthly horse health magazine, The Horse: Your Guide To Equine Health Care and its award-winning website, TheHorse.com. I was the photo/newsletter editor, then moved on to be the web producer for the website, which included doing the social media for the magazine.
I took some time off from freelancing while working for The Horse, but inside I knew that I missed it. Writing is an outlet. My mother is a very talented person when it comes to drawing and arts, but it was passed down to me in the ability to write. I love being in the middle of the industry, to share the news and be able to dig out the story within the story. It’s about more than just seeing my name in the byline, but knowing that I’m sharing someone’s story with the world, and that you are reading every word, hopefully learning or being inspired in some way after you finish my article.
I’ve expanded from just equine event coverage to features, profiles, and instructional articles. I’ve written for a couple of canine magazines, which has also combined my love of dogs and writing. And through my personal blog, Life on Planet Marsz, I’ve been able to do some fitness and health writing–another passion of mine.
This new life as a freelance writer has been a great experience so far. Through working with the multiple publications and websites that have hired me, I have been able to expand my horizons even more than I thought possible. I’m able to stretch my imagination and my knowledge, learn new things, and share even more with more and more people.
I’m thankful for everyone who has read anything I’ve ever written, critiqued my words to help me grow as a writer, and the publications that work with me.