Get to know Author Bonnie Marlewski, a multi-talented, amazing individual who has a deep love for horses; and uses her writing as a tool to share, and raise funds for therapeutic riding centers.
Horse Tales for the Soul,: Volume SEVEN at Amazon
Overview of the Series
The Horse Tales for the Soul books showcase heartwarming, true stories from horse lovers around the globe. Each story focuses on a life lesson that was learned (or earned) through the experience and it is that life lesson that will touch the hearts of readers from all walks of life – whether they be horse lovers or not.
These books are wonderful gifts for children and adults alike who love horses or who would benefit from sharing in the life lessons other people have learned through their unique stories. All of the stories in all of the books were personally selected from the thousand of submissions by 20-year professional horsewoman, Bonnie Marlewski-Probert. Her experience teaching students for 20 years and training horses during all of those years made the creation of these books a logical extension of the work she was doing throughout her career. “Every lesson I ever taught was focused on teaching more than just what button to push on the horse to get the desired outcome. I focused on the life lessons, on the character building elements of riding that would not just create a great horseman but a great human being.” Said Bonnie Marlewski-Probert. “The Horse Tales for the Soul series of books focus on those same life lessons, those same character building elements that are so prevalent in the world of horses and are responsible for changing so many lives for the better.”
Interview with Bonnie
Elle: Tell a little about yourself
Bonnie: I was born in the Midwest and raised by three generations of business owners (my parents and
grandparents on both sides). I learned a Midwestern work ethic early by being raised in our family grocery story, but also learned the loneliness that occurs when your parents are working from 6 am until 10 pm in that same family business. I was fortunate to have a family friend who introduced me to the world of horses as an 8 year old and it was that introduction that led me on a lifelong path that included teaching, training, showing, writing, authoring 18 books myself, speaking and now, the proud owner of a book publishing firm.
Elle: What is your latest writing accomplishment?
Bonnie: We are currently wrapping up a new book called Horse Tales for the Funny Bone which will be used as a fund raising tool for Therapeutic riding Centers across the USA. This book includes true, funny, horse-related stories from horse lovers around the globe.
Elle: What was your inspiration for your latest work?
Bonnie: When I was in High School, I sustained a back injury in gymnastics which has haunted me throughout my career in horses. I know what it is like to have a physical issue that gets in the way of living the life you want. Producing books that can help raise money for the great work being done at Therapeutic Riding Centers is near and dear to my heart. We produced the 7 Horse Tales for the Soul books for that reason and the new book, Horse Tales for the Funny Bone will be used for the same purpose.
Elle: Tell us a little about any other works you have published or will be publishing.
Bonnie: I have been privileged to work with hundreds of authors around the globe, helping them bring their dreams into reality by publishing their work. I have worked with Viet Nam Vets, retired Police Officers, horsemen, nuns, grandmothers who wrote children’s books and so many others who had something special to say. It is a transformational experience to watch a first-time author go from frightened writer to confident author and I’m delighted to be a part of that process each and every time. Right now, we are in the middle of publishing a second sci-fi book for a wonderful young author, we are working on a WWII book, a horse-related humorous book and several others.
Elle: How long have you been writing and how did you fall into it?
Bonnie: I started writing after owning my own horse farm in my 20’s. I was forever frustrated that I could only work with a small number of riders per day. One day, I was at a large horse show with my clients and students who were showing and having a great time. While standing at the rail watching a little girl riding her pony around the course, she fell off and rather than her trainer or her mother encouraging her to proceed, the trainer screamed at the top of her lungs, berating the child for having embarrassed the trainer in front of all these people. That was the moment when it dawned on me that the way I taught my students was 180 different than the way others did it. My students were winning blue ribbons all day long and having the time of their life while others were terrified of their trainers and being yelled at. My frustration over only being able to work with a small number of students grew after that day and eventually led to me writing how-to magazine articles for major horse magazines. I realized that by writing articles for horse publications, I could reach hundreds of thousands of riders through my writing. That realization led to syndicated columns, book deals, how-to videos, speaking engagements and many opportunities outside of the horse world. And it all started the day I watched that little girl come off her pony on a hunt course.
Elle: Please tell us a little about your writing process.
Bonnie: Because of my upbringing, I am someone who likes to beat the sun up every morning. By that, I mean, 4:00 am is the best start-time for me. I have found that I can get a full day’s work done by 9:00 am, when I start the day at 4:00. There are no phone calls, no interruptions. I often write with music playing in my headsets.
Elle: If a fiction writer, are any of your novels based on events in your life?
Bonnie: The first fictional work I have written is in play right now and it is based, in part, on my life on myown horse farm in my 20’s. It is a contemporary romance, set in a horse barn and combines romance with horses, riding, showing, living on a horse farm and more.
Elle: What was the greatest challenge you faced with publishing your work?
Bonnie: Early in my career, I signed two traditional publishing deals. Before I signed those, I “thought” the biggest challenge was getting a deal. Once I had the deal, I quickly discovered that the real challenge was getting the traditional publisher to abide by the contract they wrote. After two dismal experiences with two different traditional publishers, and countless stories of woe from other authors who encountered the same challenges, I decided to go indie and that eventually led to starting my own publishing house for outside authors, which I have been expanding for the past 20 years. The whole point of Whitehall Publishing started when I decided to empower myself and take control of my own future. That success led to helping others do the same and that eventually was the spark that created Whitehall Publishing. It is all about empowering authors and ensuring that they maintain complete creative and financial control over their work.
Elle: Do you have a favorite author or book?
Bonnie: No, I enjoy a wide variety of authors.
Elle: Do you have any advice for other indie authors?
Bonnie: My best advice as an author and as a publisher is to recognize that in the 21st century, the authors who stand out the most and sell the most books are those who are equally talented both as a writer and as a marketing person.
Elle: What genre or genres do you write and why?
Bonnie: Non-fiction within the horse industry, dog industry, how-to markets because my background was in teaching. It made sense to continue in the how-to market. However, my publishing firm works in almost all genres.
“Over a decade ago I stopped riding as a serious hobby. Today, after reading this book, I have been inspired to again take up this sport. While reading these pages I was reminded of the great learning, joy, friendship and inspiration that horses brought to my life, and how much I miss them. Thank you to all of authors for sharing their amazing stories and for providing the motivation to make new friends.” Linda P, La Porte Indiana.
“In between the tears of joy and sorrow in reading these heart-warming tales, I have again felt the awe and wonder, the generosity of spirit in the connection between horses and their humans. It takes a lot of wisdom and courage (let alone a good sense of humor) to live our lives, especially when it comes down to proper horsemanship, and I for one am honored to have shared these amazing tales... Thank you all.” Bandy Schmidt, Life-long horse lover, proud companion of Joe the Quarab. Lake Five, Wisconsin.
“While reviewing Horse Tales for the Soul I found that this book had such wonderful stories I couldn’t help but share them with my son. Ian, my 8 month old son, enjoyed many of the tales, sitting very quietly listening closely, and always turning to see why I had momentarily stopped reading to wipe away a tear. Thank you to all the authors who have shared such emotional pieces of their hearts with horse lovers everywhere. I found so many stories I could relate to in so many ways, whether a tissue box was needed or not. After I finished reading the last story I couldn’t help but feel the urge to go out and get my own horse to start having my own horse tales to share...” Tifane Grayce Worsley. Artist &at home Mom. Reno, NV, USA.
Where to find Bonnie and Horse Tales
http://horsetalesforthesoul.com - autographed copies available here for $19.95