Jennifer Walker is a full time freelance writer. She has published articles in Modern Arabian Horse, Arabian Horse Times, and Sierra Style, including monthly contributions to Horseman's News magazine. She owns some beautiful Arabian horses and enjoys writing about her first love… horses! Another love of hers is Jennifer’s husband, Greg, who just happens to be a professional chef. How lucky is that!!! She also has other interests besides horses. Jennifer is a professional ballroom dance instructor.
Hello, Jennifer. When I was a teen, one of my favorite books was Black Beauty. Tell us about your book, Bubba Goes National.
I started writing this story a few years ago, and it took me a couple years to finish because I kept wandering away and coming back. After some excellent editing and advice from my mentor, Michelle L. Devon, I decided to publish it. It's been a lot of fun getting Bubba Goes National out to the public and hearing how much people love it.
Where did you get your ideas? Do you get most of them from life experiences since you own horses?
Many of my ideas do come from real life. I've never had a lot of money, so I've worked off a lot of training and lessons, just like Leslie. Some of the horse show scenes in Bubba Goes National come from actual experiences I've had, either as a youth or in recent years, although I embellish a lot. Of course, some of it is just completely made up!
Creating a book isn’t easy. Do you use an outline when you write or play it by ear?
I'm too lazy to do outlines--I need instant gratification! I like to just sit down and start writing something I can eventually do something with. However, it scares me to start a story without knowing how to finish it. I had Bubba figured out after a couple of brainstorming sessions and kept a loose outline in my head. I did that with another book I wrote and it went very smoothly. However, the sequel to Bubba Goes National is sitting on my hard drive right now while I frantically try to figure out the ending because I didn't do that before I started. Since I have a goal to finish Bubba to the Rescue by the end of July, I'd better come up with something fast!
I know what you mean. You may have a great plot, but there needs to be a good ending. A reviewer, Michelle L. Devon, wrote, “Bubba Goes National is a sweet story, but it also tackles some of the more difficult issues teens have to deal with these days, such as death of a parent, competitive rivalry, overcoming tough obstacles, and working hard to earn something. It’s a story any teen girl who has ever dreamed of having her own horse will want to read, and horse-loving grownup girls will too!” Tell me your thoughts about this review.
I think she pretty well nailed what this story is about. It pleased me to hear that someone reading the story got out of it what I wanted them to, and it touches me that she believes in it as much as I do.
What does your husband think about your writing style?
I think he might be one of my biggest fans, and not just because he's contractually obligated to be! He is an avid reader in several different genres, but teenage horse books written for girls isn't usually one of them. He honestly loved the story and is constantly pushing me to get it out there. He is also a writer himself and has a really fun writing style. He needs to get some stories out so people can read and enjoy them.
This interview has been so fun. Okay, tell us something about the real you that we’ll never forget.
Wow! What a wonderful experience! I can just imagine your excitement at age 17… and even now as you try for the Nationals once again. Thanks for the opportunity of getting to know you.