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 was born and raised in Warren, Pennsylvania. She received degrees from Cornell University, Boston University, and the University of Iowa, Writer's Workshop. She has published three books of poems: An Otherwise Perfect History (Ithaca House, 1988), Wheeler Lane (Igneus Press, 1998), and Dark Track (Word Tech Press, 2006), as well as three chapbooks, Fires at Yellowstone (Bacchae Press, 1994), Scared Money Never Wins (Finishing Line Press, 2005), and Restalrig (Finishing Line Press, 2006). After making careers as an editor and teacher and mom, she turned her attention back to her childhood passion of horses. Since 1995, she has been engaged in the sport of three-day eventing. She lives in northern Baltimore County on a horse farm with her husband, Barrett Warner.