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The book, 'Perfect Practice: A Philosophy for Living an Authentic and Transparent Life,' uses horses to channel life experiences of pain into resolution

Mary Corning doesn't train horses and she certainly doesn't teach people how to ride. But she does use horses as a metaphor on how to teach people to do other things.GRAPHIC PHOTO: GARY ALLEN
 - Newberg author and life coach Mary Corning recently released her latest book, 'Perfect Practice: A Philosophy for Living an Authentic and Transparent life.'

The Newberg resident is a life coach and author of the upcoming book "Perfect Practice: A Philosophy for Living an Authentic and Transparent Life." The book is meant to be an inspiration to others and is based on the lessons she learned from Ray Hunt, a legendary horse trainer originally from Texas. This "personal enrichment" book is a series of stories woven together that ultimately looks to turn pain and conflict into something positive.

"This book is based on much of the philosophy I gained from him early on, but applied to all relations and all life experience," Corning said.

The book will be released June 10 and is self-published through her company, Circle Around Publishing, but copies are available on her website for preorder at There will be a launch event in Wilsonville on Saturday, with Caroline Hunt, Ray Hunt's widow, speaking. Corning will also do a book signing event in Newberg at the First Friday ArtWalk on June 7 outside of Down to Details.

Corning said the book uses horses to describe life experiences. She said throughout her life, she learned to be authentic and successful, as well as separate things.

"The key message is we can shift our perspective and change our world," she said. "You can't control a horse to be a certain way."

The book is meant to be transformative, she continued. To use past experiences – pain or conflict – and work toward a resolution and shift how people see things in the world. She said horses are a good example of that. You can't force a horse to do something, much like you can't force a person to move toward a resolution.

"When I found this philosophy, it changed me," she said. "You don't have to have a horse, but horses are great metaphors."

She added that the book touches on pain, saying that in life, it's not about if a person feels pain, but when they do.

"I use pain as purpose," she said.

Corning, who said she struggled with substance abuse earlier in life, has lived in Newberg for the past 20 years. She described her life as something that was very independent. She moved out of her mother's home at the age of 15 and started a business at 18. At the age of 21, she fulfilled what at that point had been her lifelong dream, something her single mother could never afford her: a horse.

"Nothing was ever handed to me," she said. "I built my life completely independently. I met Ray after that."

She learned a philosophy from Hunt which she said she has been "running with ever since."

Hunt was known for striving toward perfection and not taking the easy way. She uses this philosophy not just in her book, but also as a life coach.

"There are plenty of trainers out there, but I help people understand their horses, their husbands, their wives, their children," she said.

Arts & Leisure briefs

Heritage Center to host Hat Day

The Yamhill Valley Heritage Center will host a pancake breakfast and Hay Day beginning at 8:30 a.m. June 22. The Hay Day features several demonstrations on antique equipment and draft animals. The breakfast costs $7, with proceeds going toward kids attending a 4-H Wagon Train.

CCC to unveil two exhibits

The Chehalem Cultural Center will unveil two exhibits on June 4. The first is titled "The Glory of Oregon," by Brad Isom, which will be display in the Founders Lobby. The second, titled "Unconditional," is by Rachel Wold, and will be erected in the Central Gallery.

Art Elements launches next exhibit

Newberg's Art Elements Gallery will host its next exhibit beginning June 4. The exhibit is titled "Native" and features paintings by Theresa Andreas-O'Leary and blown glass by Kelly Howard.

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