Short Go Makes The NFR

Short Go Makes the NFR, written by Lindsay Keller and illustrated by Marilyn Domer, is a stroll down memory lane for those of us who grew up in the western world. Playing horse and rider, pretending to be at the NFR, is something we all did as kids and it brought back smiles remembering our own children galloping around on their stick horses. The illustrations truly capture your attention and help bring the story to life. A definite must for every household, whether you have horses or not!
From the author: One thing to note – my mom is the illustrator of the book. So even though the questions were really directed to me, occasionally I answered as “us.”
  • How did you become involved with the subject or theme of your book?
      • Our family has been involved in horses and rodeo for nearly 60 years. Both Mom and I were born into this way of life and would not have wanted to live any other way.
  • Why did you choose to write in your particular field or genre?
      • I chose to write “Short Go Makes the NFR” because I realized when I had my son in July of 2015, many of the books about cowboys, horses and the sport of rodeo were written and illustrated by people far removed from the western way of life. Being a writer and a mother, I knew I could do something about that, so with a little encouragement from my husband, I did.
  • What brought you to write this book?
      • As a child, my sister and I would spend nearly every day pretending to compete at the NFR aboard our own horses. We would fight over who pretended to be Sherry Cervi, Kristie Peterson and Charmayne James. Those childhood memories inspired the storyline for “Short Go Makes the NFR,” where siblings, Elsie and Max, pretend to compete at the NFR with their horse “Short Go.”
  • What was the driving force/inspiration behind this book?
      • Our inspiration behind both the storyline and illustrations really came from our own personal experiences with our horses, rodeo and the NFR itself. Our family has owned season tickets since the rodeo was in Oklahoma City (30+ years), so even though we all compete at the amateur level, we have a long-standing respect for and appreciation of the professional sport’s biggest event.
  • What are your goals of this book? What do you hope to accomplish by publishing this book?
      • We have one goal with this book: To inspire more children to fall in love with horses and the sport of rodeo. With the feedback we have received since our launch less than a month ago, we feel like we have been successful!
  • What was the hardest part of writing this book?
      • The book was not hard to write and the words just came to me because I knew I was not the only child who had a big imagination and the desire to compete at the NFR. I would say the hard part was being able to capture a child’s fantasies and illustrate them in a way that a child who had not yet envisioned themselves at the NFR could understand. Mom spent a lot of time on each illustration and from what we have heard, seems to have created illustrations that resonate with both children who grow up dreaming of being cowboys and those that are introduced to this way of life through our book. Which, to me, is remarkable. I am really proud of what she was able to do because it is one thing for me to be able to write about dreams, but a whole other ballgame for her to be able to put pictures to my words.
  • What did you enjoy most about writing this book?
      • The best part of creating this book has definitely been the feedback we have received from the families who purchased it. We have had many families tell us their children love the book and several who have said their kids are wanting to re-enact the NFR events on their own ponies – exactly like we hoped for! We even had one family tell us their little girl did not like to read, but is more than willing to read “Short Go Makes the NFR” because it is about horses and that is what she loves! The book was definitely a leap of faith for us, but those stories make it feel 100 percent worth it.
  • What makes your book stand out from the crowd?
      • I think our book stands out because it was created by real rodeo moms. I am always on the hunt for a good cowboy book for my son, and I have found a few, but more often than not, I come up with a book that is cute, but not authentic. I am biased of course, but I think our book is able to capture children’s attention and be authentic at the same time. And, we did not leave out the parents! Our book is dedicated to rodeo moms and the last page is actually written for the moms out there reading the book. So often the rodeo mom (or any mom for that matter) is the silent helper behind the scenes that makes everything happen for the kids and we feel like she deserves a tip of the hat.
  • What do your plans for future projects include?
      • We are really still in the infancy stages of this adventure and haven’t really made any next step plans yet. For now, we are just trusting in God to help us accomplish our goal of helping more children fall in love with horses and the sport of rodeo however He sees fit.
  • How has your environment and upbringing colored your writing?
      • At almost every high school rodeo I competed in the announcer (who knew my family) would tell fans, “Her daddy had a rope in her hands before she could walk and she has been riding horses since she was knee-high.” And, that was the truth. I can totally relate to the kids out there who live-and-breath this way of life so I feel like I knew how to write a story that would appeal to them. The cool part though is that even kids that did not grow up the way we did, are still loving the book. And those are the kids I am really happy to hear about because in today’s world, I think recruiting a few more kids into the rodeo family is a great thing.
  • How can readers discover more about you and you work?

Books are available on our website – and families can stay up-to-date with our latest news, offers and giveaways at

Thank you to Guest Blogger Michelle A. Farley. Please follow her on social media!
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Heather Cannon – Florida Girl, Event & Travel Marketer, Lover of Old Country Music & Coffee. 
Founder of Women In Rodeo… Rodeo’s first Women’s Networking Group. Bringing Women In Rodeo together for Motivation and Education. #DesignYourLife #CreateTheDream #beYOU

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