Glowing Author #31
Every Glowing Author glows in a different way. Example? Meet Rebecca Ondov!
Okay, Rebecca, tell us a bit about your amazing self.
Kay, as a baby, I think the first word I spoke after “Mama” and “Dada” was horse. God instilled inside of me a passion for horses that, instead of fading over the years, grew stronger. It was that word that led me from my small town in Minnesota to Montana where I dove into an extraordinary adventure.
Fifteen years I rode through the Bob Marshall Wilderness Complex of Montana from May through December. Thirteen years of that I led groups of people on horseback, packing their gear on mules, through miles of rugged winding trails. The other two years I rode for the U.S. Forest Service as the Wilderness Ranger for the Scapegoat Wilderness. With my German shepherd trotting alongside, I roamed thousands of miles of mountain trails—alone—pulling my pack mule behind me. Often times, on the ten-day hitches I never saw another soul.
Through the years I developed a unique outlook on life. Each day proved simple—either I lived or I died. If I lived, then I tackled the next day’s adventures. Believe me I developed tons of character as I encountered everything from grizzly bears to injured horses! Most of the time, I worked at least a two-day horseback ride from the nearest help. All I had to fix the situation were my wits and God—God always turned out to be my best bet.
Then my life turned in an unexpected direction. In 1992, I felt led to enter a Guideposts writing contest even though I had no interest in writing—or talent, I thought. Then, out of 5,400 manuscripts, I won. Guideposts flew me, along with 14 other winners, to an intensive week long all-expense-paid workshop, which was tutored by some of the top Christian writers in the world. The whole week I felt like a fish out of water, but I knew God would only ask me to do the impossible. Since then I’ve written magazine articles, done technical writing, and have written a couple books. I live in Western Montana. Three horses, two mules, and a golden retriever, keep me entertained.
I’m going to take a wild stab in the dark and guess that your book might be about horses. Right?
Right. Horse Tales from Heaven: Reflections Along the Trail With God was released in February of 2010 and the gift version in June of 2010. Drawing on my 15 years of “living in the saddle” experience, I’ve corralled a collection of wild-west stories that capture the authentic Western life and what it means to depend on God for provision, grace, and our very lives as we ride the trail with Him every day.
I was thrilled to find out that the paperback was so popular that it went back to press for another printing and the publisher asked me to write another book. Yesterday I turned in a manuscript for Heavenly Horse Sense: Inspirational Stories That Warm the Heart. I was delighted when a couple hours later the publisher told me that they accepted it. WOW! And Thank You Jesus.
Congratulations! So, what book has made the biggest impact on your life?
The Holy Bible has to be #1. I meditate on it each day and learn nuggets of faith on how to live. My second would be—hands down—Louis L’Amour. I’ve read his books over and over. His ability to capture location is unequaled and I enjoy the Western flavor.
Do you blog?
I do, but I’ve not been diligent. That insidious candle, which often times gets burned from both ends, got torched the last couple years as I work a full-time, extremely high stress job and write part time.
Any particular opinions on the advantages or disadvantages of blogging?
I have mixed emotions about it. It seems to me that everybody is out there talking, talking, talking. Everywhere you look people are talking on all the social media—but who is really listening? I know that it’s “the thing to do to promote yourself,” but I question it.
So do you use social media in your own marketing at all?
I do post to Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube as a means to connect with my readers on a personal level. I try to make sure that I go into their pages and comment as well as respond to what they are saying and I’ve made some fun friends.
What’s one thing that would surprise us about you?
Nearly every job I’ve had has been deep within a man’s world—including brokering lumber.
Now that you are on the other side of writing—a published writer—do you have any words of advice for new writers?
Yes, one thing I feel is a must—go to Mount Hermon.
Ah, great words of advice! “I got my start at the Mount Hermon Writer’s Conference.” So many writers say that—including you and me! Thanks, Rebecca, for being with us.
From my Website people can connect with me on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and my blog.
“By day I broker lumber and by night I forge ahead with my passion—writing stories about the Western lifestyle, which encourages my readers to pursue an extraordinary life.”