Busy With The New Stuff…




Wondered if I was even going to be able to revise Hacked Off – I am now starting to write new scenes to paste into the MS. This involves writing new stuff for the cast – now I have started, it feels doable.

I am sticking with composing to Scrivener with the lap top set up near the stack of revision cards. It isn’t as quick as long hand, but it is organised and I don’t have to type up.

I seem to be averaging about 600 composed, typed and checked words/hour. I seem to do two scenes a day and it is making me feel brain drained after.

I think it will get better – apart from anything most of these new scenes are at the start and once I am working with existing scenes I think it will feel better.

This first ever revision is taking me a while – and this MS is one of my oldest and written before I had much input from other writers  – so it is a good one to use and I am beginning to enjoy the process – especially now I have started writing the new stuff I feel progress is being made.:)


Writing Week?


Been doing a lot of thinking about the characters in Hacked Off, by putting self in the position of taking Buddy down to the livery yard next door – for a few weeks while we get going again – has allowed me to think about and feel  ‘fear’ as a concept and about the relationship between horses, people and group dynamics – reading around that then, looking at my characters to deepen them.


It has been an active week – no Podcasts, or other input, or much On Line activity – as I have been absorbed in my horse, my book and my thoughts, and I have bee watching the orchard blossom…


This is ‘Hoary Morning’ with ‘Winston’ below snapped a few years ago in full glory.


All Change…

Not now going next door…2016-05-06 10.59.47.jpg

Unpacked and staying!

Dan re shod him. Bud and I have been doing ground work and pre-ride routines and I have been re discovering the joys of ‘Passenger’ rides  – in the ‘safe environment’ of the field – letting self drift with him and in the process finding my childhood somehow again – after I got over feeling like a Nelly and wondering what the folk on the bus thought – it became a  mindful – meditative – process – as  pony poo picking up is to Yoga – and  was cathartic, both he and I were very restful – I suppose I should say at this point he was tacked up, and I did have my hat on, and I did hold the neck strap, and make sure he didn’t step in his reins 🙂 – so it wasn’t quite like going back to my childhood of hopping on the nearest moorland pony and disappearing for the day!

I have been reading the Tao Of Equus Linda Kohanov- which is not an easy read – but IS well worth the effort- and the combo of that, and the unease I have been feeling about taking Bud to the yard – leaving my two ponies at home – suddenly erupted beyond me being shy and became a definite ‘No he is staying here and we will all stay together!’ Equally, I suddenly decided to ask Dan my Farrier to repad and shoe Rufus – both ponies came through the winter extraordinarily fat – both are usually lean fellows – I am not looking to ride Flax but if I did he rides barefoot anyway – Rufe does not.

I found myself once again cleaning kit and washing soft horse furnishings and literally getting the cobwebs and birds nests out of the corner of the barn where such things hang.

It is obviously MY FAULT that the heavens have opened and most horse related activity in the land has ceased 🙁

What ever comes next I do not know…

But I take advice from many folks that if you  always get what you have always got- by doing X – then do something else.

So I tossed my to do list, and my time table, and my aims and goals, and thought about why I want to ride – and what I want for them – I ride to feel free – but I have stumbled with them at times, and the upshot has been Rufe and Flax are now ‘Evergreen’ and field bound  – OK – it is one of several fields, and they have a view , and they are a long way from forgotten dopes on a rope under a bridge – but really? May be my riding activity is as much about them being free as me – where as before I tended to think

‘ Well it is me that wants to go for the ride…’

I am not sure that was ever all there was to it  – they never once refused to go, and they are always keen to move fields, always queued up to see what is happening  – I know plenty of folk do have the problem of horses being herd bound/barn sour or nappy – mine never were – but even so they become more confident together than apart  – if it isn’t part of their day – and it hasn’t been.

My ponies were  forest born wild, and born free…

Rather like Linda in her book I have had this feeling that ‘something is wrong’ but have dismissed it thinking that it is largely me – feeling guilty for not being able to carry on their ‘training’ to a higher level,  or because they are chubby or  because Rufus gets sweet itch and Flax needs me to be a better leader than I am – but actually I think that what is wrong, is that they feel trapped, and left out, and I can feel that – and after reading ALL of Linda’s book  -I am prepared to give it more credence as a possibility than I was doing before.

I was very interested in her comments on emotional congruency and how important it is- and I realised that this doesn’t just apply to Buddy and I – ie me putting on a Happy Face which he knows is false and then wondering why he is jumpy! This was also an issue with Flax –  where as Rufe is stallion like in his ability to ignore my forcefield, and is confident enough in himself not to worry – if I am there physically that is enough for him – but the other two ask for the whole me and the real me – mad, bad or happy – as long as I am not pretending.

I had a brief session with a friend’s horse back in the spring and she commented that I was looking beyond the horse and out of the arena  all the time – and she was right – in an attempt to take pressure off the horse I looked to the horizon – in that case outside the school – and then thought about my problems  or what a nice day it was – the disconnect  from her old mare on my rope was immediate. With Buddy I noticed last week that when he is trying to canter on line if I look to the horizon he bends to the outside and finds it hard to strike off – if my focus is ahead of him but on the line of the circle he has little trouble maintaining bend and gait and strikes off comfortably enough, for him.

When riding – I am thinking I may also do this a legacy from riding  the older horses that I have had for years – OK with Bud – until there is a sudden lack of confidence ,caused by lack of regular riding, failing to top up his innate common sense – but if there is  -then there is a ‘turn around and run’ potential – till I snap out of it enough to give him a lead either in the saddle or on foot – until of course last Autumn when I got exasperated while standing by him waiting for some sheep to pass-  and he turned around and ran from ME – leaving me face down on the ground… and him lucky to be found ‘uninjured’ – our relationship has taken time to rebuild and is still doing so…

IN Flax’s case it used to be that he would try and get behind me or on top of me which was only noticeable when I rode out alone – it is my guess now it was the same thing – I was thinking over the horizon ‘not looking at the spook’ but over doing it to the point where he felt my absence dangerously, I was then getting scared, and looking away even more  -and getting cross with my self , and frustrated with myself at not being able to make him understand me – silly now I think about it of course – he doesn’t have to understand me he just has to trust me and for that I have to be genuine and present – congruent in what I am asking and what I am doing and feeling.


Flax May 2014 day before The Long Ride Home In Tears…

So  There Is Much To Think About…

AS for Rufus? The little wise one  is beginning to resemble the Laughing Budda statue and it will be good to wander where we will again …:)


Long Ride To Be Free….


Hot Riding Date To Rekindle Flames OF Passion …

OK it was 30 min with a Carrot Stick and rope – what is not to like?

Team Allington and 'Super Horse' Buddy On The Road Trip Of The Summer :)

Team Allington and ‘Super Horse’ Buddy On The Road Trip Of The Summer 🙂

We Are Heading Out…

Looks as if Bud is transplanting back to Green Acres – next door farm – for a few weeks while he and I get going again. He was born there, and what with road closures around us and loads of stuff still going on here it seems more sense for him to go back to see his friends – and then we both get some company  as we get out and about for a few weeks.

This week we are doing our ground work and checking the saddle fits and having a little sit on for me – hum and a Yoga DVD session every day  building up to some running – also me –  though he probably thinks the same – and next week Dan is putting Bud’s shoes back on and then I will walk Bud down to the farm after that – hopefully after he has settled back in with new field mates safely we can get out around the village till we are both fitter and better connected. 🙂 And may be Jodhpurs waistband will do up…



Research And Stuff -Video, Dictation, Transcription in journal/blog.

Playing with video and sound recording in Blog post and journalling




Dragon – bought it at great expense a few years ago – comes on a CD that loads very slowly and I had issues with serial numbers etc – it says Y on the box but it is actually an X (!) – it really slowed my then Vista machine to the point I un installed it. But this week I re installed on W10 machine and it is faster,  but  the microphone is dire and so I use the integral one to the lap top which is vulnerable to back ground noise – I now have an iPhone 6 and thought I could combine the two – Hum- first there was ‘which app?’ then how to join the two? And find the files and then the lack of correction features and saving and …. I gave it up. BUT if you want to dictate and have it transcribed straight into Scrivener or via Dragon box thing you are kinda lumbered with Dragon.


I have Evernote Premium anyway which I use a lot – if you create a new note in Evernote on the iPhone and instead of typing you hit the little microphone sign in the keyboard area you can speak into the phone and the txt appears instantly and you can stop and start and correct and it all appears on your lap top ‘just like that’. Job Done.

Web Cam notes on the other hand are NOT video – they are stills only.


For use with the iPhone – One Note App works in the same way as Evernote for Dictation to Text – again – if you use the microphone within the key board. I guess it is down to which  soft ware you use or want to buy into, for the look and functionality look you prefer…(The one thing I remember about One Note though is that if you try and print from a Page or Note you have to be a bit careful that you don’t get the lot)

So for video for journaling?

The laptop’s own camera and camera roll work perfectly but if you want it with bells and whistles then – on the lap top – you can also video journal straight into OneNote and edit it and also sound record separately and picture and the sound quality aren’t  bad for no extra cost on programs that are already familiar.

The video journalling function doesn’t seem to be available in the One Note App, and as I said above in Evernote it is only still photos on either though video can be embedded.


The iPhone can be used to VDO Journal perfectly well and I would imagine be embedded in whatever you are doing – blog etc. But I do not know if that is what it is or is just a link to it


That is a still photo from the iPhone collection but the video was too big and 50 MB – As can be seen IT ISN’T here…! It did not up load so One Note cannot be used to put together a whole post and copy it here.

It took a smaller one but it still tells me it is loading several hours later! And neither is that here…




Video recording started: 11:06 29 April 2016


This obviously works if you click the link and how you might up load to the blog I do not know – I already noticed that the free Word Press Blog doesn’t let you upload video and my self hosted does but I will admit to not knowing the limits of that.

Still handy to know what I can and can’t do with this and I will practice up loading to the blog – and the above is what happened there -so far!

How is this useful use of my time this week?


Coming Soon…:)

Well I am at the ‘Write In’ stage and ‘Cutting’ stage of revision on Hacked Off and was looking to transcribe speech to text in some way – long and short of that is that IF I want to dictate to text in Scrivener then I need to practise with Dragon 13 but if I don’t want to buggar about with that at my desk ,I can dictate into an Evernote note any where I happen to be and then copy the text into Scrivener – or I could just write it longhand and type up/dictate and transcribe or type straight into Scrivener – life was probably simpler and less distracting when the choice was  Pencil, Ink, Biro or Type Writer. 🙂

Where did that morph into any relevance for journal keeping?

Trying to see if I could keep an ‘organisable’ video diary – with clips I could put up here – ANYTHING to avoid typing – but I think that unless I want to go on a major detour – photos and typed updates are just fine…:) 🙂 🙂

OK! I admit I was killing time till Husband goes back to work next week.

Quest Series - Book 1 coming soon.

Quest Series – Book 1 coming EVENTUALLY 🙂