Today I've been thinking about commitment from several different perspectives. The first I'd like to share with you is the commitment my in-laws have made to taking in retired horses and giving them a retirement home that roughly rivals an equine version of The Ritz. They have acres of green grassy pasture, updated stalls, lots of apples and carrots, homemade horse cookies and warm, apple flavored water in the wintertime. I think if the area horses could, they'd line up at my in-law's door to apply for the retirement facility.
At the moment they have nine retirees. Here's a picture of two of them, Pride and Star. They have been with them a couple of years now. I remember when I first heard about them. They were retired show horses, very even tempered, well mannered gaited Tennessee Walkers. They were at a farm with a total of 35 horses owned by a couple who had developed health problems and could no longer care for so many. The prior owners loved these two so much, they wanted to find them a home where they could always be together.
My in-laws took them in and promised they would always keep them together. They were both thin when they arrived, but rounded out nicely, as you can see. Star is about 19 and Pride is 20 this year, and they're completely happy. I know many of you have taken in retired horses as well. It takes a special kind of commitment to care for horses who are aged, knowing your time with them will be limited, but it's a wonderful act of kindness.
On another note, I made a commitment of my own in January. I signed up to attend an Agent Author Day Conference as I currently well my novels unagented and have been advised by individuals much more experienced than myself that it's time to get an agent.
Well, in January it looked very do-able to finish my current work in progress, a contemporary fantasy with, of course, an equestrian setting. Hmmm. This was before my son's broken foot and two other family members on antibiotics for respiratory infections that wouldn't quit. Well, here I am in mid-March with 30,000 word count completed on an estimated 85,000 word novel. Here, folks, is the reality of the professional writer. I have three options 1.) cancel the conference and wait for next year's (probably not a good idea as I've been advised not to sell anything else without an agent); 2.) attend the conference whether the book is finished or not (this assumes no agent will want it, which would be going in with a rather self-defeating attitude) or 3.) work like crazy. Ah, here is ground I'm very familiar with both professionally and with horses.
Okay, folks, the clock is ticking. I'm at 30,000 words. Can I do it? Stay tuned!