Writing Competition




Are you a budding Jilly Cooper or the new Dick Francis? Have you always dreamed of being an equestrian author? Well here is your chance to enter your equestrian story in a new Equestrian Short Story Competition sponsored by Haynet and Lavender & White Equestrian Publishing.

The winning story will have their story published in a form of an e-book which can be purchased and downloaded by the public with all the profits going to the wonderful equine charity World Horse Welfare. This could be the start of a new chapter in your life writing fiction in the equestrian world. You can let your imagination run wild as long as the subject matter has an equestrian theme. The sponsors would like to see stories that have an equestrian background rather solely about just being a horse. Maybe a crime novel set in the horse world or perhaps a fantasy novel or an equestrian Harry Potter? How about an equestrian romance which is ideal for the Jilly Cooper addicts!

So if you have the plot in your head and characters being formed, please visit Haynet for further details on how to enter this exciting equestrian short story competition. The competition is running for three months giving author’s time to pen, edit and proof read their equine stories.

Closing date for entries is 5pm Monday 11 August 2014. The best stories will be put forward to the judges who will be responsible for compiling a shortlist of five outstanding short equestrian stories. The winning story will be chosen and two runners up selected.

Judges, Lavender & White Equestrian Publishing have a wealth of publishing knowledge and experience in equestrian journalism spanning decades. Haynet is a well known equestrian blogging network with members from all over the world writing about their lives with horses.

With the launch of this joint venture Haynet and Lavender and White Equestrian Publishing are looking forward to finding a new equestrian author to join the literary world!

For more details please contact Samantha Hobden from Haynet via email: haynetblog@gmail.com or Jacqueline Smalley from Lavender and White Equestrian Publishing on info@lavenderandwhite.co.uk

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Don’t pitch your book to a publisher


Maybe you have a wonderful idea for a novel or would like to share your knowledge in a non-fiction book. Writing a book is a fabulous way to promote your business by showing how knowledgeable you are about your area of expertise.


Up until fairly recently authors had very little choice when it came to publishing. There were two routes – either approach a publisher, or to self-publish. The latter seemed to be the domain of people who had written obscure works that no publisher would touch.


Fortunately the marketplace has changed and publishing via a company which specialises in helping independent authors has become a viable option for authors.


Traditional versus self/assisted publishing

•           The media love stories of authors being given huge advances. The reality is very different, advances are generally small and are offset against future sales of which the author earns 10% of the cover price.

•           When you eventually find a publisher to take your book, the process of producing it takes at least a year. They buy the rights to your book and will edit and design the cover to suit their budget and house style. All control is taken out of your hands.


Print on demand options as well as online e-book sellers have dramatically changed the publishing world. Why give a publishing house your book and let them make all of the money out of it when you’ve put all of the hard work in?


Publish independently and the whole selling price goes into your pocket.


•           With self or shared publishing, you have total control over the contents, design and appearance of the book.

•           Once you have finished the manuscript you can have a finished book; hardcover, paperback or e-book for sale within days.


The choice is yours

•           Are you willing to gamble and hope you will earn a large advance from a publisher? Or is control of your manuscript and finances more important?

•           There is no reason why you shouldn’t be one of the lucky authors who get a multi-million advance – but equally, there is no reason why you can’t sell a million copies of your own book and earn the whole of the cover price.


A company specialising in working with independent authors will help


Sounds very simple, but all of the jobs the traditional publisher would do, such as editing, cover design and marketing will need to be  professionally done.

•           The book market is very competitive.

•           Your book must be as good as it can possibly be.

•           It is vitally important your book is properly edited and presented. A poor book complete with editing and formatting errors will put off future readers.

•           A company who specialise in assisting independent authors will be able to help with promotion – vital for sales.

Oh! Did I mention Lavender and White Equestrian Publishing – we specialise in equestrian fiction and non-fiction and are always looking for authors and new writers to work with.  Please contact us at info@lavenderandwhite.co.uk


Parents, Ponies and their Princesses.

We have just started work on our latest book, ‘Parents, Ponies and their Princesses.’ The book, written by Australian author Felicity Wischer is aimed at parents of horse mad children who have finally succumbed to pressure and are thinking of buying a pony. The book is aimed at those who have little or no knowledge of ponies and their wily ways and the problems that can come with them.


The book is written in a wry, witty style, giving lots of information, but in an easy chatty style, like a dear friend explaining things over coffee. The book will be accompanied by cartoon style illustrations which bring the text to life.


The first stage of getting any book ready for publication is the editing. It is amazing the differences in language, considering that ‘ English ‘ is the first language of both Australia and England. The first email to Felicity about her text was a list of words that our English editor had never heard of, different phrases and different words for the same thing. However those have now been clarified!


Our feelings were, when we started to edit that the book would have a place in the market both in Australia and internationally so there will be too versions for both us and Felicity to work on. We are really looking forward to seeing how this book progresses.

Pride and Prejudice and Ponies

Pride and Prejudice and horses

How to set a book in the horse world

Wow! Don’t we horse folk inhabit an exciting world. There is so much going on – so many different social worlds, careers and personalities all blended together. Money mixing with the poorest of the poor, success, failure, heartbreak and mischief all thrown together by our love of horses. What a wonderful, wonderful world in which to set a book – there is so much going on there to offer inspiration. There are so many different people involved with horses and ponies, the whole social sphere right across the board from single mum’s struggling to keep one shaggy pony to billionaires with strings of racehorses or polo ponies. Equally there is a huge variety of sports within the equestrian field from small county gymkhanas to huge race meetings and everything in between. So there’s huge scope for what to write about.  How about a crime novel set in the polo world? Or a tender romance involving a billionaire racehorse owner and his groom?

I don’t know about you, but if we are not on or around our horses then the next best thing is reading about them. That is exactly why we founded Lavender and White Equestrian Publishing – so that we could find the sort of books we want to read – and to share them with others.

Any story can be set in the horse world. One of the best things about being a writer is that you pull all of the strings, which means that you get to choose where to set your novel and what to write about. Here we’ve given Jennifer Austen’s incredible Pride and Prejudice an equestrian makeover:-

The news that a handsome young gentleman named Charlie Bingley has just bought the livery yard, Furtherfield Park causes a great stir in the equestrian community of Longbridge, especially in the Burnett household. Charlotte Burnett has five horse-mad daughters. Jenny, Eloise, Martha, Kate, and Lisa.  Mrs Burnett is desperate to see them all married. The Burnetts attend a ball at which Freddie. Bingley is present. He is taken with Jennifer and spends much of the evening dancing with her. His close friend, Freddie  Dempsey, is very arrogant and refuses to dance with Eloise, which makes everyone view him as utterly obnoxious.

me darcy

At equestrian functions over subsequent weeks, however, Freddie Dempsey finds himself increasingly attracted to Eloise’s charm and intelligence. Jennifer’s friendship with Charlie Bingley also continues. While riding at a hunter trails at Furtherfield Park she has a fall and has to stay at Charlie’s home. In order to look after Jennifer, Eloise rides through muddy fields and arrives with a spattered horse, much to the disdain of his snobbish sister Ruby. Ruby’s spite only increases when she notices that Dempsey, whom she fancies, pays quite a bit of attention to Eloise.

At the beginning of winter, the Charlie and Freddie  leave Furtherfield and return to the city, much to Jennifer’s and Eloise’s dismay. As winter progresses, Jennifer visits the city to see friends (hoping also that she might see  Charlie Bingley). But he is nowhere to be found.

That spring, Eloise visits Charlotte,  a friend who lives near the home of Freddie. One day Eloise has gone for a dressage lesson at the yard of Catherine de Burgh, who is also Dempsey’s aunt. Dempsey is at the yard Catherine and gradually begins a tentative friendship with Eloise. One day, he makes a shocking proposal of marriage, which Eloise quickly refuses. She tells Dempsey that she considers him arrogant and unpleasant.

The following summer Eloise is at the races with her cousins – while she is staying with them they take her to some friends who live beside Freddie’s farm. While she is there her cousins suggest they go and look at Freddie’s stables which are incredible – having an Olympic sized dressage arena and fabulous facilities.  She is shocked to find Freddie is there – he is similarly shocked to see her and falls off his horse over a cross country fence and ends up in the water at the far side of a jump.

This incident makes Freddie angry and drives the two of them apart further. A few days later Eloise gets a telephone call from her parents saying that Martha has been arrested for possession of drugs. Fearing that Freddie would be appalled Eloise heads home, not telling him why.

Eloise is distraught when she hears that Charlie Bingley has proposed to Jennifer, everyone seems to be happy except her. While the family celebrates, Eloise concentrates on her riding – getting ready for a big show. While having a lesson with her trainer Catherine de Burgh Catherine tells Eloise that she has heard that Dempsey, her nephew, is planning to marry her. Since she considers Eloise an unsuitable match for Freddie, Catherine demands that Eloise promise to refuse him. Eloise retorts that she is not engaged to Freddie, but is furious at Catherine for considering her not good enough for him.

Eloise wins her class at the show and Freddie comes to congratulate her. They begin to talk and he tells her that his feelings have not altered since the spring. Realising that her feelings for him are the same Eloise accepts his proposal.

It’s not just equestrian fiction that we are looking for at Lavender and White – we are always on the look-out for entertaining, well written memoires, lives spent involved with horses, a life time of hunting, training unruly horses, or a magical ride across foreign lands. Don’t forget though, no matter how interesting your story is, it still needs to be brought to life with the setting. You may be able to vividly recall what it was like riding your home bred youngster at the Horse of the Year show, but the reader wants to be transported there with the sounds, smells and sights.

At Lavender and White Equestrian Publishing we are looking for equestrian books of every genre, romance, crime, fantasy, historical – right across the whole spectrum of writing, just as long as the book is either set in the horse world, or about horses.


Our new title is perfect for newbie pony owning parents

Lavender and White Equestrian Publishing are delighted to announce the arrival of our new book ‘Parents, Ponies and their Princesses’ written by Felicity Wischer.

princess on a pony

The author is based in rural Australia.  Felicity has been involved with horses all of her life. She is an experienced writer, having articles published in Australian horse magazines.  She was an editor/reader on a book by Alistair Brooks ‘Horses of course and Horse Humans Too’ which was released in November 2012. Last year Wischer was the ghost writer of an autobiography of Sandi Simons, ‘A Life Worth Riding,’ which was released by Finch Publishing in November 2013.

When she is not writing Wischer is a horse trainer, an equine tension release therapist and also a confidence coach for women who are getting back in the saddle after years of not riding.

The inspiration for ‘Parents, Ponies and their Princesses’  came from Wischer coming into contact with inexperienced parents who are buying a pony. We love  the delightful way this book combines humour while also giving sound advice  about what to do, what to look for and how to go about getting that elusive first pony and the journey that parents embark upon with their child.

princess and pony 2

This charming book features cartoon illustrations of the characters the Princess, her mother and father as they set out on their voyage of discovery into the equestrian world.

Editing is about to start on the book, the illustrations are almost complete so we hope to have the book ready for publication in 6 – 8 weeks time.


A New Author For Equestrian Legends

horse cartoon


Thank you so much to everyone who took the time to email us and send in their writing in response to our search for a writer to carry on with the Equestrian Legends book we are publishing later this year. The amount of talent we saw was incredible, but unfortunately we could only take on one writer.   We also saw some fabulous ideas for alternative books and are really hoping we can work with the authors of those projects.

After lots of deliberation we have finally found someone to continue with Polly’s good work.

Sara O’Donovan is a freelance equestrian journalist who writes for the Irish Horse World section of the Irish Field. She has also had features in Horse and Hound, the Irish Examiner and various other newspapers. While her full time job is as the PR Manager of the West Cork Literary Festival she still finds time to show jump. Sara  was brought up in the racing world, both her father and mother worked in racing. Sara’s had some brilliant sounding jobs in the horse industry, working at Weatherbys, for show jumper Stephen Hadley and spent a year as racing secretary to the Queen’s trainer, Lord Huntingdon.

Just like everyone at Lavender and White – Sara’s dual passions in life are horses and writing.  She published a book called The Horses of County Cork in 2006 and is currently halfway through a novel.

We are really looking forward to working with Sara and looking forward to seeing Equestrian Legends completed – will keep you posted on our progress.

Equine Biomechanics and other news


Wonderful news this week:- The text for Bradley Whale’s book Equine Biomechanics is finally complete and signed off. We are now busy checking off the completed images. The next step is for this wonderful book to be printed, something we can’t wait to happen. It has been incredible to be part of this journey with Bradley, seeing his idea coming to fruition.
Equine Biomechanics is the first of a series that Bradley is working on. He is a wonderful author to work with, incredibly knowledgeable about his subject and so concerned about how good his book is. There is no ego at work here – all he is interested in is if he has done a good enough job to explain his subject to his readers. We are sure he has. The book is fascinating, detailing the anatomy of the horse and explaining what can and does go wrong, both with the horse and when the added burden of a rider is added.
We’ve been working too on the submissions from the authors who are interested in completing the Equestrian Legends book and carrying on with the Facebook page that was opened to promote the book. Wow! What an enormous amount of talented authors there are ‘out there’. We hope that not only will the Equestrian Legends book be completed, but that other books will come out of this as well.

Thanks to everyone who has contacted us!

Wow! What a huge response we’ve had for our request for a writer to take over the Equestrian Legends book project.
We were absolutely inundated with emails and messages from interested writers from all over the world. It’s incredible the amount of talented writers there are out there.
At the moment we are working our way slowly through the details of the writers who applied and hope to have someone to take over the book as soon as possible. We are so excited about this book, hopefully it will be one of our best sellers for Christmas this year along with a pony story illustrated by ESMA winning artist, Tony O’Connor.
We are always on the lookout for new authors of both fiction and non-fiction – so if you have an idea for a book with an equestrian theme please get in touch, we’d love to hear from you – and honestly we don’t bite!

Thank you to everyone who has contacted us

Wow! What a huge response we’ve had for our request for a writer to take over the Equestrian Legends book project.
We were absolutely inundated with emails and messages from interested writers from all over the world. It’s incredible the amount of talented writers there are out there.
At the moment we are working our way slowly through the details of the writers who applied and hope to have someone to take over the book as soon as possible. We are so excited about this book, hopefully it will be one of our best sellers for Christmas this year along with a pony story illustrated by ESMA winning artist, Tony O’Connor.
We are always on the lookout for new authors of both fiction and non-fiction – so if you have an idea for a book with an equestrian theme please get in touch, we’d love to hear from you – and honestly we don’t bite!

Writer wanted for exciting project

Writer Wanted For Exciting Project
Due to unforeseen circumstances Lavender and White Equestrian Publishing are looking for a keen, ambitious writer to continue with a book we intend to publish in the autumn for the Christmas market.
We recently commissioned a book with the working title of Equestrian Legends. The book will contain short biographies of important equestrians – horse and human – who have made an impact on the horse world so there is huge scope. The subject range is huge, covering racing, eventing, literature, show jumping, television and dressage.
Unfortunately due to the author obtaining a rather lucrative three book deal with a large publishing house she no longer has the time to work on this book. While we are very disappointed not to be continuing to work with Polly we are thrilled that her enormous talent has been recognised at last.
So – we are now looking for a writer to continue with the book and of course to reap the rewards in terms of royalties when it goes on sale. A Facebook page has been set up for the book so regular posts and increasing ‘likes’ would be part of the remit. This is a great opportunity for someone with a writing background or someone who has the drive and talent to make this book work. For further information please contact either Jacqueline or Sarah at info@lavenderandwhite.co.uk. Please share this post – we’d love to discover a talented new author and the bigger the reach of the post the better. Thank you!