I recently figured that hey, I write about knights and cowboys. Maybe I should learn how to ride a horse myself.
It’s something I’ve always wanted to do. There’s something absolutely beautiful about seeing a horse and rider in harmony. Something almost mystical.
Learning how to ride, is another animal altogether. There was Calypso, who hates me. Really. I went up to him, trusting him and… well… He tried to head-butt me. And the riding went worse.
So given that Calypso was out to get me, my instructor introduced me to Juno. Now Juno and I hit it off. With Juno, I thought I’d be able to go all the way.
Except the second time I rode him (yes, I know it’s stupid to name a stallion for the Roman goddess of women and motherhood), he started to do things that made me less than comfortable. I mean, I’m new to this riding thing. So when I want the horse to stop, it’s nice to know the horse will stop. Still, I figured it’d be okay, since I’d grow better as I practiced more.
The lesson after that, though, I was asked to ride Quicksilver. Now Quicky is rather an ornery beast. He’s the one who puts all the horses on the farm in their places. And when he does, he kicks butt and takes names. He’s also the one who wants to be in front no matter what, so he’s faster than either of the other two. And he bites any horse who tries to take the lead from him.
The thing is… Quicky and I simply hit it off. Sure, he was fast, but never in a way that undermined the trust I had to put in him. In fact, riding him gave me the confidence to think I could actually learn other things. Most importantly, though, he loves me too. If there’s a group of people and he’s loose, he comes to me and lowers his head for me to pet him. Is he the horse I can trust? Possibly. He might change his mind later, but for now, we’re getting along perfectly, even if logic says I shouldn’t have liked him.
Incidentally, today, I had to ride Juno and my mom had to ride Quicky. Juno was actually scarier today than Calypso. And my mother felt the same way about Quicky.
Now, I bet you’re wondering how I’m bringing this to writing. Well.
When I started writing, there was a western. We got along okay, but when my mom took my computer and gave it to someone else, I stopped working on it for years. The spark just wasn’t there. (Juno.)
Later on, there was a fantasy. A quest, in fact. With a chosen one. But it was dark. Took me places I didn’t want to go. In fact, it was part of some stuff I was going through at the time that really really messed me up in ways that made my university issues look like kindergarten. In the end, I burnt it. Yep. Wiped it, and all the back-ups, and burnt all the plans and drawings I’d made for it. (Calypso)
I have a few other drafts that I could explain, but right now, there aren’t horses that match them.
Finally, in walked a character while I was re-reading Chronicles of Narnia. After all those failed attempts, I’d decided to give up on writing idea until I was certain that my idea was a good one. The character didn’t take no for an answer, and the story he revealed to me was so good that I knew I’d finish it. To put money where my mouth was, I even started this blog as My First Book. I planned it to be a blog of me finishing a book and getting it published.
Was it because the story was easy? No. In fact, my older bloggy friends might recall that I called it The Beast. The story was huge. It defied my every attempt at pre-planning. The characters were reticent. In fact I hated one of the main characters. But I couldn’t give up. I didn’t want to. (That story went on to become The Vanished Knight.)
Maybe it’s too soon to make this call, but that sounds a lot like Quicksilver. A bit of a bastard, but hey, it picked me and I love it for giving me that honor.
So in summary, the lesson I’ve learnt so far in writing and horse riding: