Title: Managing Editor/Graphic Designer, Trafalgar Square Books
Location: Our main offices are based in North Pomfret, Vermont. I split my time between Vermont and working remotely from my home in Boston, Massachusetts.
Education: I attended St. Lawrence University in Canton, New York, where I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English writing and a minor in philosophy. I also spent a semester attending American University in Washington, DC, where I focused on journalism. Later in life, I took night classes at the New England Institute of Art and received a certificate in graphic design upon completion.
Business: Trafalgar Square Books, the leading publisher of equestrian books and videos. Our very first horse book was published in 1985—that book was Centered Riding by Sally Swift—a book that helped start an organization and revolutionized how to learn to ride and teach others to ride. Since then, we have published hundreds of books guided by the mission “for the good of the horse.” Fun fact: We are owned and run entirely by women. Believe it or not, there are only seven of us on staff, but we are mighty!
Years in the Equine Publishing Industry: I have worked for Trafalgar Square Books for 19 years. If you count all the time I spent choosing, borrowing, and reading horse books from the library as a child, then I’ve been involved in equine publishing almost my entire life!
AHP: When did you join AHP?
RD: I personally became involved the very first year I was hired by TSB, so that would be in January of 2002. TSB had already been a member for years prior to my arrival.
AHP: How did you get involved in equine media and AHP?
RD: I wanted to be a novelist or a journalist or both, and I grew up riding horses. After experimenting with how that writing dream might come true for a couple of years after college, I found myself back home in Vermont, looking for the next step in my career. I saw an ad for an editorial assistant in our local paper. I figured out the job would involve publishing horse books, I convinced them to choose me, and the rest is history! AHP was part of the package.
AHP: What project in equine media are you most proud of and why?
RD: I couldn’t possibly single out any one project I have been lucky enough to work on in the past 19 years. We put our heart and soul into every book we publish, and we care deeply for all of our authors, their distinct and astounding talents, and the messages they hope to share with others. I am incredibly proud of every single book or video that bears our imprint—it represents an author’s time, effort, and dreams, and it represents hours and hours of our own work, cultivating the product, making it as high quality as possible, and marketing it to as many people as we can. I am proud that what we help create intends to help horses and help horse people, and make them happier, healthier, and more successful in each other’s company.
AHP: What are the biggest benefits of AHP to your organization?
RD: Absolutely networking. AHP enables us to establish connections and friendships that are invaluable. It also allows us to be part of an important exchange of information that spans all aspects of the horse industry, across all disciplines.
AHP: How do you make the most of your membership?
RD: We value the newsletters and press releases we receive as members. We also appreciate the educational sessions that are provided on a regular basis. The annual AHP Equine Media Conference and other gatherings offer us the chance to meet and speak with others within the industry and cultivate mutually beneficial relationships—as well as just enjoy interesting, fabulous people with similar interests!
AHP: What projects do you have coming up that you’re excited about?
RD: As a traditional publisher we work eight months ahead of the three main seasons: spring, fall, and winter. Our seasons are also all full (we have six to ten books already contracted in them) through 2022. That means I have A LOT of new books already in the works to be excited about! We are continuing to offer our popular instructional texts, but we also have taken on more memoir and biography recently, so we will have lots of great reading—both educational and entertaining—to offer in the months ahead.