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“The way to choose happiness is to follow what is right and real and the truth for you. You can never be happy living someone else’s dream. Live your own. And you will for sure know the meaning of happiness.”— Oprah

The happiness of creativity ebbs and flows resembling the tide of life. With my writing, I’ve experienced ideas that spring into my head just as I envisioned the result of a special mating of a stallion to a favourite mare. My characters grow and change, becoming as real as the horses. As with real life my characters sneer, jostle and roll their eyes as they seep inside my consciousness. Plot twists I never knew I was capable of dreaming up become tangible. And I often say, ‘Oh my! Where did that come from? Who would have thought?’
And then – you have to get home quickly. You need a pen. A phone to tap into. Anything. You mustn’t forget. You must not lose it! Sometimes, I’ve tried to grasp the idea by the tail and manage to hold on but often it pulls free and disappears, never to return.

I was often asked what happens if you never get anything out of breeding horses, by anything, I think people were referring to money. They asked how I would feel wasting all our time breeding foals and later writing my novels to not be successful. I end up just giving them a grin and mumbling whatever comes into my head because if they couldn’t understand the happiness, I receive from (a) breeding horses and (b) writing, how could I try and explain?

I actually loved the unpredictability of breeding Arabian horses just as I love the unpredictability of writing. The memories from forty years plus of breeding offer a huge gallery of recollections to write about and adapt to story-lines.

The saying goes “Memories are Priceless” and indeed the priceless memories of our years of breeding Arabian horses are MANY! They are a mixture of good and bad, exciting and frightening, happy and sad, all woven together into what could be described as a large tapestry of life. The thread that holds this tapestry together would have to be the special people in ones life and the love of creating priceless memories.

I think we all learn over time how some people come into your life briefly before moving on, but there are some who remain to support, share and enrich your life. People that are scattered around Australia and the world. All with different personalities and often new and interesting creative ideas. But the most interesting thing is how often against opposing advice, people will continue to breed, write, paint and make pleasing things for no other reason than it’s what they love to do.

Phyllis Browning of Browning Arabians USA, a very dear friend once wrote: “Breeding exquisite Egyptian Arabian horses lends artistic creativity to those who are not artistically creative; patience and humility to those who are not inclined; constant vision of the next generations to come; and lifelong friendships that support the boundaries of countries, cultures and for many of us, the test of time.”

But I feel many of you will agree, when it’s for love, you will always do it anyway.

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