Name: Valerie Ormond
Location: Bowie, Maryland
Business: Veteran Writing Services, LLC. I provide professional writing and consulting services for businesses and organizations. It all started when I wrote my first young adult horse book, and it grew from there to other forms of writing.
AHP Affiliation: Media Professional member since 2010
Education: U.S. Army War College, Carlisle, Pennsylvania, Master of Strategic Studies; National Intelligence University, Washington, D.C., Master of Science, Strategic Intelligence; Towson University, Towson, Maryland, Bachelor of Arts, English and Mass Communication.
Years in the equine media industry: 11
AHP: When did you join AHP and why?
VO: I joined AHP in 2010 when my first book was about to be published. I wanted to learn more from experts in the equine media industry. Although I had a background that included writing for media, it wasn't in the equine field.
AHP: How did you find out about AHP and what appealed to you about it?
VO: I found out about AHP while I was doing market research for my first book through the power of the internet. I had grown up as a horse person and also liked to write, so AHP seemed like a nice fit bringing together two interests. I attended my first AHP Conference in San Diego, California, and immediately met many great people and felt so welcome. I’ve been a member since.
AHP: What project in equine media are you most proud of and why?
VO: My two books, Believing in Horses and Believing in Horses, Too. When I retired after serving 25 years in the U.S. Navy, I decided to write a book and highlight a military family in the story. It’s fun to hear positive feedback from readers, and I’ve been honored with eight book awards including Best Veterans Fiction in the 2019 EQUUS Film and Arts Festival.
AHP: What are the biggest benefits of AHP to your business?
VO: Continuing education and communications with other AHP members. I learn new tips at every conference that make me a better writer and a more knowledgeable horsewoman. I’ve made friendships and connections with people via AHP that have lasted through the years.
AHP: How do you make the most of your AHP membership?
VO: I follow the AHP Newsgroup in my email inbox and pass information to others who may not otherwise see that news. I also use the AHP Newsgroup to share news about my business and books and have been pleasantly surprised with the results including book reviews, interviews, and even a “Standing Ovation by Ovation Riding.” I’ve mentioned AHP people before, but I say it again because the relationships I’ve made through AHP have to be the most valuable benefit of AHP membership.
AHP: What projects do you have coming up that you’re excited about?
VO: Well, there are many of them, but I’ll stick with the top horse ones since this is about AHP.
- I wrote a historical fiction short story about the Pony Express that I would like to find a good home for.
- I’m working on an article about a former racehorse’s unusual name and how that name ended up having interesting connections in his future.
- A number of educational organizations across the country have used excerpts from both of my books, with permission, to help with child literacy. I think this is a good thing! I’m working on converting a chapter from my second book into a standalone short story based on feedback I’ve received on it from several educators. And of course there is a horse in that story. I believe the more children can be exposed to horses, even if only through words, the better.
- And finally, AHP member Carly Kade will have me on her Equestrian Author Spotlight Podcast on March 25, and I’m excited about that because it will be my first podcast as other than a listener and watcher. And Carly and I met through AHP!
Photo by MRS Photography, LLC