Come to the X

a memoir by Julia Wendell


About the Book

Julia Wendell’s Come to the X starts with an earthquake and ends with a demolition. In between is the elusive canter, in all its guises, at times extended, at times collected, but never quite reaching an elastic middle, despite the author’s hands, heels, curses, and gentle urgings. Wendell is fear-less in the irons, and she writes with a merciful and elegant pen about an old military drill—the sport of three-day eventing—in a modern era—with its heroes, its clowns, its suffering dreams, and especially, its ghosts.

“This book overflows with gusto. Julia Wendell’s passions come into sharp focus as she competes against fellow riders, herself, and time.” —Michael Downs, author of The Greatest Show


Praise for Finding My Distance

“The motorcycles in Julia Wendell’s Finding My Distance have long necks and coffin bones. Like philosopher / biker Robert Pirsig before her, Wen-dell’s zen and the art of horses is based on the day to day maintenance, but unlike him, hers includes leaving the ground, and the thrill of being lost in a timeless moment, trusting only her horse to bring her back.” —Allegheny Almanac

Preorder now! Ships in February. Official release in spring 2020.

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Come to the X records the negotiations between the body’s aging and its ambitions, a riddle that has no answer. Or, if there is an answer, it is not one for the living. When Wendell and her husband put down their old dog, Daisy, Wendell confides: ‘I whisper something in the dog’s ear I will never admit to anyone, before…I return to the barns, and before the second fatal shot.’ Come to the X offers something better than the answers for how to fix our imperfections: a way of living with the ghosts of our future and former selves that sustain the difference between how we ride, and why.”

—Alison Turner at Barrelhouse

About the Author

Julia Wendell was born the year Ginsberg wrote Howl. Twelve moons ring her Jupiter. One is named Poetry. Another, Horse. Two are named for her children, and one for her husband, Barrett Warner. There’s the moon of the Alleghenies, where she grew up, and moons for her teachers: Norman Dubie at Arizona, Larry Levis at the Iowa Writers Workshop, and Helen Vendler at Boston University. Her undergraduate moon is Cornell University, where she studied literature and music. There’s even a moon called Piano that swings across her widening sky. 

Paperback, 6x9"
356 pages
ISBN 987-0-913123-37-9