In this 36th Equestrian Author Spotlight, I talk with fellow equine author Emily Williams. Of course, we discuss the best topics on earth — writing, books and horses! In the interview, horse book lovers will meet her Quarter Horse Bella, learn what inspired her horse book Rafferty Lincoln Loves ..., and how working with a racehorse charity helped her research the book. Happy reading!
About Equine Author Emily Williams
Emily Williams lives by the seaside in West Sussex with her family and a menagerie of small pets. After graduating from Sussex University with a BA in Psychology, Emily trained as a primary school teacher and teaches in a local school. Letters to Eloise is her debut novel.
Nice to meet you, Emily! Now let's gallop into the interview.
What is your favorite horse memory?
My favorite horse memory would be from my childhood, when I worked on a Victorian farm museum with the heavy horses. I absolutely loved grooming and caring for these gentle giant shire horses and showing them off to the farms visitors.
One of my most precious memories would be attending a show with the horses and learning how to dress these magnificent horses up for the competition with their big fluffy white feathers and mane braided into coloured ribbons. I felt so proud that day to be a part of the experience with the farm owners and extremely lucky to have been given the opportunities.
What would your dream horse be like?
I should say my own horse, Bella. I always wanted an American Quarter Horse and she is beautiful. She is a red bay colour and is everything I dreamed of having in a horse.
If I could choose another, it would be a chestnut Arabian with a flowing mane (I loved this breed from stories I read as a child) or a stocky little piebald cob! I always loved the piebald cob I rode as a child and they have fantastic characters.
Why did you choose to write horse books?
My first novel didn’t involve horses, except I did slip a shire horse or two into the background story as the protagonist grew up on a farm. I couldn’t help myself but add a horse or two! I read millions of horse novels as a child and really wanted to see if I could write a horse novel myself. I had the inspiration from a horse charity dedicated to looking after retired racehorses. I decided to donate the proceeds of my novel to this charity, which gave me the motivation to develop a Young Adult novel around the horse theme but also with coming of age elements.
How long have you been an author?
I suppose always! Inside, I have always been an author since I wrote my first stories as a young child. But now, since my debut ‘Letters to Eloise’ was released earlier this year, I count myself as an author.
How did you get the idea for the cover of the book?
My novel Rafferty Lincoln Loves … involves the protagonist, Rafferty trying to win the heart of the girl of his dreams, Liberty. Liberty, a slightly aloof but immensely popular high school girl, absolutely loves horses and anything horse related and Rafferty believes that learning about horses would win her over. The cover of the book is inspired by some of the difficulties Rafferty faces along the way with his quest. I had two covers in mind for the book but this one really stood out as the theme of the book.
How did you research your novel?
I had to research a lot into the racehorse elements of the story, as racing isn’t an area of horses that I was familiar with. The charity helped to correct any misunderstandings! I also asked some willing teenagers to read the novel and look into elements about teenage life and experiences that I had missed. My beta readers for the story were excellent and gave great suggestions to improve the novel. There are also police and social work parts to the novel, and I enlisted the help from friends in those particular careers to check the story for any errors I made.
What do you think makes your book (or any book) stand out from the crowd?
Rafferty Lincoln Loves … isn’t your typical horsey book. I wanted to have all the ingredients that made a good horse novel but make it more modern and edgy with themes that would resonate with teenagers and their lives at home and school. The teenagers, despite finding the missing racehorse, aren’t instantly friends. There is many tensions and issues as the story unfolds with their decision to keep the missing racehorse hidden from the world. There are messages in the novel that I hope with stand out and will stick with you when you read it.
What was your favorite chapter to write and why?
The last chapter, a letter, was the hardest to write as was so emotional but it my favourite as it really sums up the messages of the book. It really covers what the racehorse means to the teenagers and how it brought them all together.
What’s next? Future goals for your writing?
I am currently writing a psychological thriller, which I hope to finish early next year. Hopefully my readers will enjoy Rafferty Lincoln Loves … and then I will think about whether to continue with story with a sequel of write another stand alone YA horse novel. I immensely enjoyed writing it, so I think there will definitely be more horse novels coming!
More about Emily Williams and her books!
Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Emily-Williams/
What a spur jingling author interview!
A BIG thank you to Emily Williams for participating in my Equestrian Author Spotlight series. I learn so much from other equine authors and appreciate how unique each of our writing journeys are. I love that all the authors featured in this series are linked through our creativity, passion for writing, and love of horses. I think it is so important to support each other. I appreciate the support of a fellow author. Thanks for giving me the gift of your time, Emily! #authorsunite
I LOVE HORSE BOOKS! If you are an author who writes about horses and would like to be spotlighted let me know. I’d be happy to include you, too. Sharing about fellow horse book authors makes my spurs jingle! Visit my contact page to fill out a request: https://www.carlykadecreative.com/contact.html
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Books by Carly Kade
Carly Kade writes for anyone who loves horses, handsome cowboys and a great romance. Creative writing about horses makes her spurs jingle!