I’m crazy about animals, horses especially, always have been. I grew up in Huntington, WV, a suburban college town, but spend as much time as I could at my relatives who lived in the country. I spend countless hours with all the farm animals, but was inseparable from my collie dog and Aunt Gaby‘s pony, Prince. It was love at first sight. All I wanted to do was take care of and ride that horse. As early as three years old I was ceaselessly begging my parents to take me to the farm. When I became a teenager my relatives moved back to the city and sold the farm. Unfortunately it was not practical for the daughter of a working family in Huntington, WV to own a horse. So I focused on my loyal dog and dreamed of places were cowboys, Indians and horses roamed.
As an adult I followed my dreams and filled my home with animals. They called me Ellie May from the Beverly Hillbillies Show. I had horses and dogs, of course, and at one time or another a squirrel, raccoon, opossum, birds, turtles, hamsters etc, etc. Then I feel in love with a man, who lived in of all places, New York City. No room and no time for the menagerie. I made due with one dog, one cat and a few fish. We both had busy careers, me working as a model and then running a Park Avenue plastic surgeon’s office. As fate would have it, magically the last few years have brought me back full circle to the passions of my childhood, horses and writing.
My husband had been in New York City all his adult life and was ready for a change. We moved to NJ in 2004 to a home that was suitable for a horse! At the time I was considering buying a horse, by chance, I watched the PBS series “Cloud” about a herd of wild horses in The Pryor Mountains. I was taken by their spirit and beauty and appalled by their plight. I decided to adopt a mustang rather than buy a domestic horse. In 2005 I took a leap of faith and online, based on a few photographs of a scrawny filly, adopted a horse from The Bureau of Land Management. The experience of bringing a wild horse into our family has been extraordinary. The trust that is involved with both humans and horse builds a bond that cannot be described, it was very touching and emotional the first time we met and I was touching her just a few hours later. I left the barn crying that day; it was something I will never forget and soon after this experience my cancer could no longer be found. I was so moved by the experience that I wanted to give something back to the wild horses and the people who are trying to save them. I decided to write a children’s story based on my experience and donate a portion of the proceeds to the non-profit United States Wild Horse and Burro Association.
-- Lisa Holderby