Judith Janda Presnall
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In 1985, I decided to take writing classes and eventually, after more than 250 rejections and almost eight years, my first book, Animals That Glow, was published.  That was a huge thrill!  My favorite topics to write about are animals and people.

For me, researching my topics is the exciting part of writing.  Here are some of my adventures:

 Police officer and his dogFor Police Dogs, I went on a ride-along in a police car with Officer Rick and his K9 named Rex.  Lance and I were invited to observe and photograph dogs and their handlers during a police training session at the Anaheim Police K9 Academy.  (Lance, my husband, is my photographer on my research trips.)
  Dog sled teamFor Sled Dogs, we went on a sled dog ride and I was the musher for a brief time. 
That's me in the blue jacket.  Dog sledding also inspired my picture book Yukon Sled
  Judy with sled dogThis is me with one of the happy sled dogs after a ride. 

We also went to Anchorage, Alaska, to see the start of the 1,000-mile Iditarod Race.  
At that time, we visited Martin Buser’s “Happy Trails” Kennel.  Martin has won the Iditarod race four times.

  Judy with Jockey
For Racehorses, I visited a jockey school and learned how they trained to ride racehorses.
  Bucking hourseFor Rodeo Animals, we photographed at rodeos right next to the bull-riding and horse-bucking stalls and were up close and personal with the cowboy ropers and steers.
  Mount RushmoreFor Mount Rushmore, a park ranger accompanied us while we climbed the backside of Mount Rushmore in South Dakota.  This is Lance and me with Abraham Lincoln's profile on the left side.
  Artificial ArmFor Artificial Organs, we toured a factory in Salt Lake City, Utah, where they manufactured artificial arms.  This is Harold Sears, Ph.D., who invented the artificial arm demonstrating how the arm could grasp and hold my book.

  Judy with horseFor Horse Therapists, I took horseback riding classes.
Kaalaupapa from the air
Kalaupapa from the airplane.  Notice the giant pali (cliff).
Judy at AirportIn researching my historical fiction picture book about leprosy, I visited the Kalaupapa Leprosy Settlement in Molokai, Hawaii in 2017. I flew from Maui to topside Molokai
then down to the settlement. One of the sites on the Father Damien Bus Tour was his decorated tomb.
Fr. Damian GraveFather Damien's decorated Grave