Author's notes: After years of encouragement from my friends to write a young reader’s book, I wrote Journey Unexpected. My book’s central theme is dealing with unexpected events and unexpected people, while introducing to my readers to the ancestral homeland of the three pony tribes first described in the Hearth's Warming Eve episode. I have named this first pony homeland Dream Valley, as the ancestral homeland was not given a name during the episode.
What am I telling my readers in a story about Dream Valley pony society that can’t be told in the Equestrian homeland? I’m curious as to what could happen if Twilight and her friends decided to return to their ancestral homeland to discover what happened to it and who might be living there.
In addition, I considered how many real world people spend their time, money, and effort discovering their ancestral descents and sometimes visiting their ancestral homeland. Using reality as a guideline, I would imagine that some Equestrian ponies would wish to visit Dream Valley.
My manuscript was inspired by my traveling to foreign nations, finding the unexpected, and getting used to things not found in the United States. It was also inspired by the television show Connections by James Burke
My readers will see that separated from the Equestrian ponies for more than one thousand years - even before the births of Princess Celestia and Princess Luna - that the Dream Valley ponies developed a civilization far different from that of the Equestrian ponies. Moreover, I hope my book will be used as an opportunity for artists and writers to reimagine what an alternative pony society could look like.
Dream Valley is also an excellent opportunity to create situations that can’t be done in the Equestrian nation, such as pony flash mobs.
Moreover, I wanted to introduce to my readers the metallic ponies, which over many centuries had become a distinct species of ponies. These metallic ponies are based upon real world, Akhal-Teke horses. When I first saw images of metallic appearing Akhal-Teke horses, I thought these images had been photoshopped or the horses’ coats had been dyed those colors. No wonder that these unusual horses are Turkmenistan's national emblem.
Moreover, the Akhal-Teke horses are considered by horse enthusiasts to be the world's most beautiful horse breed. Therefore, I can imagine that Akhal-Teke horses could be the inspiration to become a successful line of pony toys for Hasbro.
I assume that Dream Valley is on the other side of one of the two oceans that border the Equestrian homeland. Otherwise, the Equestrian ponies or the Dream Valley ponies would have visited each other’s nations by now.
The Twilight's Kingdom episode showed that the power of friendship is a different and separate force from that of magic. I propose that the power of friendship can not only be employed to defeat powerful enemies, it could also be harnessed for constructive uses, such as Twilight’s friendship engine to expand generation four’s storytelling opportunities. My rationale is that the series has shown that the power of friendship can create energy to defeat villains such as Nightmare Moon; and therefore the same power of friendship could power an airship and achieve other outcomes as well.
My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, Copyright © 2010 Lauren Faust, Hasbro Studios, and DHX Media