“You’re allowed to be excited,” Jen said as she held open our November issue for me to see from my desk.
The magazines were dropped off hours earlier, but I was hesitant to open mine. I’ve been with Horse&Rider for over half a year of issues (time sure flies), but this is the first month that I’ve had my own byline—–that is, a feature solely of my producing, complete with my own photography. Sure, I’d seen the proofs cycle through and had checked out the layout, so knew what it looked like, yet I was a little wary to see it in print. Always ultra-critical, I thought maybe it’d be better if I just didn’t look.
It isn’t that I’m unexcited, or worse, jaded about what I do, it’s more that seeing my name in print is still a reality I have difficulty wrapping my head around. Eventually my curiosity got the better of me, and I even cracked a smile upon seeing the finished product. It’s tough not to smile knowing all of the work I’d put into this piece.
I have a new appreciate of the energy it takes to bring a feature from a concept to full-fledged reality. From the time I initially reached out to Darla Kennepohl; to the early-morning trip to her place; to finally pulling together a cohesive training article, many hours were spent worrying about and fine-tuning the details that culminated in the “Second Barrel Blues.”
Reader to Writer
This job enables me to have an insider look at the lives of many high-level horse trainers and professionals. And, in this case I was humbled to work with a trainer who has had so much success in and outside of the pen, having trained and jockeyed numerous world champion, futurity, derby, and even rodeo horses. Darla knows her stuff, and I was honored, and even a little celeb shocked, to be at her place asking questions about her training methods and tips to share with our readers. Because this is an event that’s close to my heart, it was fun to approach the topic as both an editor and student of the sport. My trip to SDK Barrel Horses was a learning opportunity, and I can’t begin to verbalize how pleased I am with the result. I hope our readers appreciate and learn as much from Darla’s insight as I did. Be on the lookout for the November issue to hit the stands, soon.