How to cope with Nordanners
Do you feel like you're getting nowhere? Does it seem like no matter how hard you try, you still fail terribly? I decided to write this text about the general "rules" on coping with breeders. This applies to all breeds and breeders, not just Nordanners. But since there is some drama from time to time about how hard they are to get and so on, I decided to shed some light on how to do it. I am a living example of what you can gain by doing it this way. I've never paid over 1000 points for any of my horses. None of them. I've paid this amount (and actually more) for non-Nordanners as well, so claiming that this breed is completely run by points and cash is absolutely false.Overall behaviour
Be friendly and considerate. If you run around adding every single mutation to your favourites collection you promptly named "breeding prospects", you are going to start off by creating a negative image of yourself. Get to know people, talk to them, get into the community. When I personally started the whole equine community thing back in 2008, what I did was join contests. Just any contest with an equine theme, namely designing things. I wasn't particularly good, I had no idea what I was doing but that's how I got in. I didn't expect anyone to do anything for me, and I didn't think it was "my right" to get attention. Whining, hate journals or any creating of drama is going to be remembered. Don't do anything you think a pleasant human being wouldn't do.
Use your characters, give them personalities. Show some love. Make something that tells everyone a bit about who you are. Maybe an ID, journal – appear as a real, nice person. You don't need to be the best artist, but put effort into whatever you do. Yes, this takes hours off your day. Mind your grammar! Yes, seriously. Learn the difference in "your" and "you're", "it's" and "its" and so on. Make the kind of comments you would be really happy receiving. Thoughtful, longer type of comments. You don't need to lie or kiss anyone's ass, it can be constructive criticism as well – just think about how you type it down. And while right now you might want to say that it's not fair to expect someone who doesn't speak English as their native language to write fluently - well here's news for you: I don't speak English as my native language either. Sometimes it takes me thinking to get my message across correctly, but I take the time.When asking for a breeding
First check the person's journal list for any type of breeding rules. If they have a set read them thoroughly. Don't skim, preferably read them over a couple of times. Have a clue on their rules? Great. Then look at the horse's page. Does it imply if the horse is open or closed?
If it says closed, you'd be better off not asking. No, seriously. Asking despite being told not to is just going to create irritation and make you appear ignorant and arrogant. It seems like you're disrespectful and just don't care enough to read.
If you're going to ask anyway, think about what you can offer. A simple fullbody picture won't do. The horse is closed, not available. If you want to convince the other party to give you a breeding, you will need to offer something worthwhile, a bigger amount of kaaring than you'd normally do, for example. If you're not prepared to "up the stakes", don't bother. Wait for an open slot. A breeding offer that states that you're not interested in paying much is not going to up your chances. Find out what the breeder might actually want and what they're interested in, and be specific when you offer. Do not form the note along the lines: "I can offer some kaaring and points." How much? What kind of quality? Examples? What would you do with the offspring? Why do you want to breed this exact horse?
Form your note nicely, using correct grammar, be friendly and polite! And what's the most important thing: respect your answer. Also actually look and study the lineage, name and the gender of the horse you're asking a breeding from. You're going to make yourself look silly if you ask to breed two inbred stallions together, especially if you title the note by the horse's name and get it wrong. It is all about the little things.When denied a breeding
Do not whine! Don't start the whole "now I understand why these horses are so hard to get" –sort of thing. Just no. Thank the breeder for their time, respect their answer and move on. You had your warning at the "closed" signs so it is seriously nothing to feel butthurt over. Imagine it the other way around: You have taken your time to write rules and that you do not wish to get breeding inquiries at this time. Then a person asks you anyway, and you tell them that your horse is not available. They lash at you and are very rude about it. Do you think you'd want to do any sort of business with them ever again? Yeah, didn't think so.When you get a breeding
It's common courtesy to draw a breeding picture, whether or not it's demanded. Don't make a half-assed scribble. Here is your chance to prove you care. Also any sort of breeding payment should be top quality. Use some love and effort! When you take the time to show you care, people will notice. You will be known as the person who always goes the extra mile. Believe me, you want that when you're building up your reputation.
When you own the foal, you will need to respect the breeding rules you agreed to. If you agreed to not breed your horse for 3 months or until you have drawn a certain amount of kaaring or even not breeding it at all, hold on to it. There might be times you'd want to sway from the original agreement, but don't. It is very rude and upsetting to the person who trusted you with the offspring of the horse that actually might have some meaning to them. And it will also demolish your chance to future breedings and horses. The word travels fast.
While the breeders might not be able to do anything else than blacklist you from any future breedings, it is very rude behavior to go over someone's head and do something you specifically agreed not to. Even if the concequences are not vast, you are not being a nice person or a breeder others want to trust in the future.Breeding mutations
While mutations are pretty and tempting, please remember that if you have gained a breeding to a nPwl with six starters in it out of nine, it is not a valued argument to gain a breeding from a short lineaged peafowl or a starter. The breeders are not charity workers and you are not entitled to their horses even if their horse would be the only one in existence. Please bear this in mind. Also no one will believe you if you want to breed a dominant mutation but you tell the breeder that you never want to breed it. In this case you simply do not _need_ a dominant mutation at all. You might want one, but that's a different story.
With long-lineaged mutation horses the risk of inbreeding is very high so you will need to trace the lineages back to starters very carefully. If you breed an inbred pair successfully the foal will turn out dead and the slots will be used, and this is your responsibility. Yours only. Do not blame anyone else if your horse ends up being inbred, because you were the one that was supposed to make sure this wouldn't happen. Flaming and whine journals won't help your case.
Heterozygous mutations never pass alone. For example nPwl + natural will never create a peafowl, no matter how many times you breed the couple together. Or multiple heterozygous mutations, like nPwl nFwn + nBsh will just be a natural horse. Dominant mutation will always create a mutation and can be bred to any horse for the mutation to show. Any unrelated horse of course.Summary
Whatever you do, stay polite towards breeders if you actually want to get into the good books with them. I cannot stress this enough. Being humble and respectful never hurts, but being cocky and ignorant is most likely going to get a negative reaction. Start out by not expecting anything. Make realistic goals and work towards them. You might want to get everything instantly, but rushing things, begging, ignoring rules and overall "noobing" around is not going to get you there.
Breathe deep. Now breathe out. Thaaaat's it. Don't get sucked into the drama, do not start it and do not spread it. Spread some love instead, good things tend to come back at you at some point. As will the bad ones, so keep that in mind. Remember that good things come to those who wait patiently. I know it's frustrating. I know you can't possibly know if something will happen for sure and when it might happen. Just stay on hold, keep on breathing and keep on hoping. I personally gained everything I've gained (in dA AND in real life, everything from my pixel ponies to my real life horse of dreams and fiancé) by waiting around for the right time. There will certainly be a time when someone, somewhere that has something you want, will want something you can offer them. It might not happen now and it might not happen tomorrow, but wait for it. Sometimes it might need a slight push, but if it doesn't happen, breathe deep again. Patience is the key. And politeness! Don't take yourself too seriously.Now, so I can be absolutely certain you got it, everyone say with me: "I must be polite and patient, and good things will come eventually."