After writing poetry for the last thirty years, Julia Wendell has written her first nonfiction book, Finding My Distance. Ms. Wendell initially geared the chronicle toward event riders and other equine enthusiasts. As the piece unfolded, however, it developed a wider appeal. In Finding My Distance, the world of three-day eventing captures the challenges, thrills, hard work and rewards, as well as the disappointments inherent in any endeavor that one pursues passionately.
Though she grew up with horses, Ms. Wendell became a competitor in the sport for the first time in her middle-years. Since then, she has worked her way up from the lower to the upper levels of the sport as an adult amateur rider. The book is largely about how her life with horses intertwines with and nourishes her life as a wife, mother and poet. The piece tracks the ups and downs of a calendar year: horses die, foals are born, daughters move to New York, and sons to India — and Julia and her Advanced horse Redmond successfully complete the Fair Hill International Three Star Three-Day Event.
“Julia Wendell writes of her year in search of a connection with her horses. As humor, sadness, life, and death gallop across the pages, we find she is writing about other connections as well. Her connection to her world, her family, and to life itself intrigues us, and her honesty and thoughtfulness resonate throughout her work. Wendell takes us on a ride through her world, yet we find at the end of it that she has been describing our own world as well.” – Jim Wofford, Eventing coach and former Olympian