On Loving Lusitano Horses & the EQUUS Film Festival Literary Corral with Lisa Diersen (Equestrian Author Spotlight Podcast Episode 4)
Episode 4: Welcome to the Equestrian Author Spotlight podcast! A weekly podcast featuring interviews with equine authors who love all things horses and writing about them. In each episode, you’ll hear inspirational stories from horse book authors including writing advice and marketing tips to help you write your own horse book. If you are an author, aspire to be an author, or simply love horse books then you are in the right place! In this week's episode, you'll meet EQUUS Film Festival Founder Lisa Diersen.
You'll learn ...
About EQUUS Film Festival Founder Lisa Diersen
Lisa Diersen is an avid equestrian and has spent her life in the company of horses. Riding since she could sit in a saddle Lisa has a great appreciation for all types of equestrian disciplines. She is the Founder and Director of the EQUUS Film Festival.
The EQUUS Film Festival empowers storytellers to show the rich history and diverse tapestry of horses in human culture through equestrian content, film, art, and literature. The EQUUS Film Festival is the first film festival oriented around equestrian-themed content from all over the world. The Festival travels the U.S. and abroad screening feature films, documentaries, shorts, music videos, commercials, educational materials, art and literature.
Lisa’s mission is to show the world how horses can bring everyone together regardless of race, age, gender, abilities or disabilities. Lisa is passionate about the education and enlightenment of others to the wonderful world of horses and everything horses can do to enrich our lives.
Lisa spends her time, when not promoting equestrian films and art, raising and training Lusitano horses, spending time with her faithful Jack Russell Terrier, Amore, and the silver stallion love of her life, Urano VO and the rest of her herd.
Watch Lisa Diersen's Interview on YouTube
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Lisa Diersen Podcast Interview Excerpt
Carly: Tell us about your affection for Lusitano horses.
Lisa: I absolutely love the breed. Lusitano's are like nothing else I've ever ridden and I hope to never stop riding them.
Carly: Tell us a about the breed.
Lisa: They are originally from Portugal. When the when the Communists took over Portugal in the 70s, they moved some of the main breeding stock to other farms in Brazil, so there are quite a few Lusitano breeding farms in Brazil now. That's where a lot of the horses that are in the U.S. now came from. They've been working to re-establish the breed in Portugal, so there's some beautiful horses in Portugal again and wonderful breeders there. The Lusitano was refined to be a working cow horse or it's a bullfighting horse. They are what the cowboys ride in Portugal on the cattle ranches. Their lateral work is amazing. They are very smooth. You can ride in the saddle with them all day.
Carly: It's very clear that you are a complete horse lover, just like me, just like a lot of the people that are going to be listening to this podcast. That leads us into the EQUUS Film Festival. Tell us about this event.
Lisa: The EQUUS Film Festival has been created to highlight and reward the diverse and creative efforts of those who artistically pay homage to the horse. EFF offers a platform to educate and enlighten the world to all issues related to horses. EQUUS Film Festival’s ultimate goal is to better the world for horses.
Lisa: This will be the 7th Annual EQUUS Film & Arts Festival. We'll be at the Kentucky Horse Park December 5th through the 8th. We're going to have an amazing herd of authors coming in for our Literary Corral. They will be at the festival selling their books, meeting their fans, signing their books for people. We have different invited equine artists coming in to display their work. We're going to have 30 plus filmmakers coming in, too. People who have a passion for telling horse stories and sharing those stories with the world.
Carly: The EQUUS Film Festival is an amazing opportunity. I got involved in 2016 for the first time and I went to New York. It was just such a wonderful time and so many of the relationships that I've made after going to the Festival and being involved with you have become lifelong partnerships and friendships. You connect so many wonderful people together through your work. Thank you for supporting equestrian creatives and everything that you're doing to bring the equine community together.
Carly: Talk a little about what the experience is like for someone attending the Festival. I know that there is also a Southern Lights Holiday Festival going on at the Park at the same time, so there is going to be an explosion of horsey activity around the EQUUS Film Festival this year.
Lisa: Yes, the Kentucky Horse Park every year does this annual event called the Southern Lights and there's a three-mile drive through the Park. The Kentucky Horse Park is huge. It's 1,700 acres. It was a World Equestrian Games venue. It's a massive facility and they put these beautiful lights everywhere throughout the Park. I was there last week and they were already setting up Christmas lights all over the park.
People will be able to drive through to see the lights and then come in to the Visitor's Center which is where the Wrigley Media Group Theaters are. That's where we're going to be having the film festival. There's going to be local artists there with their crafts and artwork to sell. We'll have our filmmakers, artists and authors there, too, and then people can see the films. We'll have plenty of informative equestrian panels going on. We've just got all kinds of fun things scheduled, along with our WINNIE Awards ceremony.
Carly: If people aren't able to make it to the annual festival, what are some other ways horse lovers can get involved or see the films?
Lisa: If you aren't able to make it to the Festival, we now have the EQUUS Film Channel on the Horse Network. It's like Netflix for horse lovers. EQUUS Film Festival ON-DEMAND is your home for the best in equestrian films, documentaries, shorts, series, clinicians, videobooks, & more! You can watch your favorites from the Fest in your own home, when and where ever you want to on any device!
Carly: Not only is there the Horse Network opportunity where you can you can stream all the horse movies, but you also host Tour Stops across the country. Talk about the EQUUS Film Festival Tour Stops
Lisa: We're doing tour stops in Maryland, Camden, NJ, South Carolina, Dallas, TX, Napa Valley, CA, Sedona AZ, Santa Fe, NM. and we go to Canada. Tour Stops feature film blocks, performances, Q&As, the opportunity to meet visiting authors, filmmakers and artists, and more.
Carly: Going back to the main event, what are some of the activities participating authors can look forward to at the EQUUS Film Festival?
Lisa: We set up what we call our Pop-Up Gallery which will be in the International Museum of the Horse. It is a very cool space. The building is literally a hundred feet from the theater and the artists, authors, and filmmakers will all have their work displayed in there. Visitors to the Film Festival can come in and buy either buy books or get their books signed by the authors.
Carly: A real benefit is obviously the networking. You're able to talk with readers, other authors and meet the filmmakers. Also, you get to see these lovely horse films. There is an author panel where there will be a great discussion about the business of horse books. There's a lot of opportunity to do a lot of different things when you participate in the EQUUS Film Festival.
Lisa: In addition, you never know who's going to show up to conduct interviews. I spoke yesterday to people from Horse Illustrated magazine. They will have a reporter there. We even have press come in from out of the country.
Carly: I think a lot of the people who are going to be listening in to this podcast are dreamers. We have big dreams. We aspire to have a book published or in your case you're working with filmmakers who aspire to get the message out around topics that are important to them in the world of horses. What advice can you share that might help aspiring authors or other aspiring dreamers who have big dreams like starting film festival?
Lisa: The best advice is to do it. Don't don't sit there and don't say I want to do it, I'm thinking about doing it, or I might do it. Do it. Do it. Do it! Don't ever let anyone tell you that you can't do it. Focus on what you believe in and focus on what you love. If you do what you believe in and do what you love, it will get there.
What a spur jingling interview!
A BIG thank you to Lisa Diersen 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, Lisa! #authorsunite
Connect with Lisa Diersen & the EQUUS Film Fest
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About Equine Author Carly Kade
Carly Kade is an award-winning equestrian author and the host of the Equestrian Author Spotlight podcast. Creative writing makes her spurs jingle! She writes fiction about horses, horse shows, Western pleasure and a handsome cowboy or two. Her books are for people just like her — crazy about reading, horses and cute cowboys!
In her free time, Carly enjoys competitively showing her registered Paint Horse, works on her next novel, reads voraciously, spends time with her two adopted dogs, and loves exploring the great outdoors.
In the Reins, the first in Carly's series of novels inspired by the equestrian lifestyle, has been an Amazon best seller for more than 10 weeks, is an EQUUS Film Festival Literary Award Winner for Best Western Fiction and has earned two Feathered Quill Book Awards in the Romance and Adult Book featuring Animals categories. The In the Reins equestrian romance series is available now in Audiobook, Paperback and eBook on Amazon, Audible, Barnes & Noble, Apple iBooks and Kobo.
The In the Reins Horse Book Series
Carly Kade writes for anyone who loves horses, handsome cowboys and a great romance. Creative writing makes her spurs jingle!
Books by Carly Kade