Displaying items by tag: Julie Cantrell

How to Help Families of the Louisiana Flood

Wednesday, 24 August 2016 19:34
My mother leaving her flooded home in a canoe.

 

Imagine, you live in a place that has never flooded. It is storming outside, but you aren't worried. It rains every day in these parts. Then, the lake behind your townhome begins to rise. You hurry to move a few special belongings to higher levels, just in case, but you laugh at yourself for overreacting. When the waters begin seeping into your house, you can't believe it. You have no flood insurance because your land is never supposed to flood. Before you can even grab a few towels, the waters are rushing higher and higher. One foot. Two feet. Almost three. How is this happening?

Outside, the water is up to four feet deep on some parts of the road. Cars are submerged. The current is swift and strong. You are trapped.

Neighbors call out, but you can't reach one another. The waters have come not only from the sky (18-19 inches of rain in 24 hours), but also from the overflowing creeks, lakes, rivers, and bayous. The flood washes all forms of aquatic life and mud and debris into every crevice of your home. Even the sewers begin to bubble, and the smells become nauseating. You spend a long, lonely night watching the waters closely. Then a good Samaritan arrives to help, just a volunteer with a boat who recognized a need and decided to do a good deed.

You rush to grab your belongings and wade out through the thigh-high waters to reach your rescue hero. You climb into the canoe with this stranger. You have no idea where you will go or how long you will be gone. You know only two things: 1. Your home has flooded. 2. You need to save your dog.

The antique sofa from my grandmother's home, ruined by the flood. Notice the water lines on the sofa and the higher one on my mother's carport.

 

The Flood of the Millennium

Last weekend, my parents lost their homes, vehicles, and belongings in the record-setting flood of Louisiana. In fact, nearly everyone I know and love lost nearly everything they own. The stories are traumatic and numerous; and while the losses are immeasurable, the redemptive tales of kindness and community spirit are even more abundant.

If there’s anything I’ve learned in the last week, it’s that I love Louisiana more than ever, and I’ve never been more proud to call it my home.

Each day, as many as a hundred friends and strangers have gathered beneath my mother's carport to enjoy home-cooked and nourishing meals delivered by friends or volunteers. Thi s shows the true Louisiana spirit. We do our best to smile through the storms of life and we never lose hope.

Social Media to the Rescue

When cellphones failed and landlines were under water, Facebook proved to be the only reliable form of communication during the flood. As I posted frequent updates through my personal page, people across the country asked how they could help (see original posts below).

Social media became a tool we could use to help those most in need, and I'm hoping it will now help reach my readers who will recognize some of the Louisiana communities featured in my latest novel, The Feathered Bone, as the areas most impacted by this flood. I believe this fictional story can now serve members of these real Louisiana communities whose needs are so great. Wouldn't that be wonderful?

Beyond my readers, I believe people want to help but are unsure how to make a real difference. While national non-profit organizations can make a big impact, I have learned that the local churches seem to be serving Louisiana communities in the most effective ways.

After the 3-day demo of my mother's home, we moved to help my father and step-mother whose home also flooded. This is the beginning of the demo pile at my father's house. 

 

 

Local Faith-Based Organizations Making Significant Difference

The volunteers and leaders of local churches are fully invested in these Louisiana communities. They know the people, they understand their needs, and they are able to reach them in ways many of the more regulated groups are unable or unwilling to do. Furthermore, Louisiana people are a fiercely independent lot. We take great pride in our work ethic and we usually do not accept charity or government handouts. It is hard for us to accept help, much less ask for it. The churches understand this and know how to ease the burden of shame. They know how to serve with love.

I’ve worked hard to compile a well-vetted list of agencies, both local and national, who are on the ground making a difference in my home communities. Thank you for supporting these selfless community servants as they strive to give families a sense of safety, shelter, and peace. There is much work to be done and the needs are many. The road to recovery will be long. But we can each make a difference. All we need to do is reach who we can, however we can, whenever we can.

 

 

PLEASE CONSIDER DONATING TO THE FOLLOWING ORGANIZATIONS:

 

LOCAL CHURCHES:

Churches are making a difference in the flood communities. Two that I have a direct relationship with are listed below, and I highly recommend them as direct routes to reach those most in need.


Judson Baptist Church before the flood. (Photo credit: Judson Baptist Church)

Judson Baptist Church (Walker, La.)

Latest Update: "Judson is now serving as a disaster food stamp distribution center. It is hard for people to get to us, so we have been delivering food and cleaning supplies to people in need. All cleaning supplies are needed, especially de-molding solutions like Shock Wave as well as cleaning cloths, brooms, mops, gloves, masks, etc. We are finding it hard to keep new towels, sheets- queen and king, and pillows. As fast as they come in they go. Food items are also needed, as well as dog/cat food and diapers (especially larger sizes)."

 

Mail donations or bring supplies to:

Judson Baptist Church

32470 Walker Rd. North

Walker, La. 70785

RE: FLOOD RELIEF

 

Christ’s Community Church (Denham Springs, La.)

 

Latest Update: "Many people are unable or unwilling to come to the church for help. Therefore, we are going into neighborhoods and distributing food and supplies. We really need teams to come and volunteer in the homes. Volunteers can stay at the church. We have shower trailers and can feed them. We can coordinate the locations where they volunteer. We also need pillows, towels, peanut butter, jelly, bread, mops, mop buckets, cleaning supplies, plastic bins, masks, gloves, box fans, outdoor sprayers, bleach, etc."

 

To send supplies via UPS:

Christ Community Church

 26574 Juban Rd

Denham Springs, La 70726

 

To mail:

Christ Community Church

PO Box 1113

Denham Springs, La 70727

To make a monetary donation online, please visit: https://giving.ncsservices.org/g3/h/

 

 

Livingston Parish Sheriff's Badge

Local Community Servants:

 

Readers may remember Sheriff Jay Ardoin in The Feathered Bone, a man whose badge was designed to bear the tag from Romans 13:4 (“For the one in authority is God's servant for your good.”) This fictional character was sparked by my real-life friend since childhood, the LP Sheriff Jason Ard (featured here discussing the flood on Fox News with Sean Hannity. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=XhFaAx03OhA)

The Livingston Parish Sheriff’s Office has been a beacon of light throughout this disaster, working diligently to rescue and transport people to safety. They continue to manage any remaining needs as well as maintain curfews and protect homes from looters. Please understand, most of these dedicated men and women have lost their homes too, but they have put their personal needs aside to serve their communities. A fund has been established specifically for the employees of the LPSO.

Latest update from Sheriff Jason Ard: To those of you asking how you can help...a 'Livingston Parish Sheriff's Office Deputy Relief Fund' has now been set up. As you may know, a large number of my deputies lost everything to floodwaters - homes, vehicles, clothes - as you know all too well. My goal is to help these deputies - & their families - get back on their feet. These are the same men & women who - instead of trying to salvage anything of their own - voluntarily ran back into floodwaters to serve & protect all of you. It's something they were born to do. We need to keep these deputies in Livingston Parish. We need to keep their kids in our school system. We need to remain a family. Together, we will overcome. I understand many of you are in the same position as these deputies. But, if you were spared or are reading this from an area not impacted...here's one way you can help rebuild Livingston Parish:

Donations can be made at any First Guaranty Bank location and Reference Livingston Parish Sheriff's Office Deputy Relief Fund.

Checks can also be mailed to:
LPSO Deputy Relief Fund
PO Box 1515
Livingston, LA 70754

Livingston Parish Schools

Readers may remember the opening of The Feathered Bone, during which our main characters traveled to New Orleans for a field trip with the Livingston Parish Schools. Last week, fifteen schools in Livingston Parish were flooded, some as deep as eight feet. The school board website says schools are closed indefinitely. In addition to structures, athletic facilities, and administration offices, fifty school buses were also damaged in the waters. More than one-third of the district’s personnel have lost their homes, belongings, and vehicles in the flood, and most of the students remain displaced.

If your school would like to sponsor a school in Livingston Parish, please email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to form that partnership. You can also donate online via: http://www.assesstheneed.com/ where Livingston Parish Assessor Jeff Taylor has established an account designated specifically for flood relief donations to the LP schools. Checks can be mailed to:

Assess the Need

PO Box 1802

Denham Springs, LA, 70727

RE: FLOOD RELIEF for LP Schools

 

One school administrator suggested sending gift cards for teachers to purchase supplies or launching a donation drive to collect school supplies, teaching materials, games, books, etc. To donate DIRECTLY to the Livingston Parish Public Schools, mail to:

Livingston Parish Public Schools

9621 Florida Blvd.

Walker, La. 70785

 

Please designate the donation for FLOOD RELIEF. You can enter either a specific school name or make the donation in general to LPPS.

 

Homeschool organizations are also reaching out through homeschool networks to restock family supplies.

 

Fur Friends in Need

 


My brother rescuing the family Lab (Teddy) who has become too old and ill to swim.

 

Remember Jay’s loyal Labrador or Amanda’s quirky cat in the novel? In Louisiana, we love our fur friends. Unfortunately, many pets and farm animals were stranded in the flood waters, overwhelming the local animal shelters and animal resources. Cara’s House is a reputable organization that has taken the lead in rescuing and protecting animals lost in the flood. To donate to Cara’s House, visit: http://www.carashouse.com/2016-flood.html

Be sure to note the donations are for FLOOD RELIEF.

 

To support the Livingston Parish SPCA, visit: http://www.livingstonspca.com/donate.html

 

The Louisiana Humane Society also plays a vital role in Louisiana animal care and has established a specific Flood Relief fund online: http://news.humanela.org/

 

Our Lady of Blind River Chapel Symbolizes Faith for All

 

 


Our Lady of Blind River Chapel (Photo Credit: Christine O’Reilly)

 

 

Many readers have confessed their favorite scenes in The Feathered Bone take place on The Blind River, a boundary river that is a very special place for many Louisianans. Sadly, this sacred place was severely damaged by the flood and is in need of repair. The story behind this chapel is a miraculous and inspirational one, and I was honored to share this space with readers unfamiliar with the deep faith of Louisiana people. If you’d like to contribute to the restoration of this sacred space, please mail checks to:

 

Our Lady of Blind River

3324 Maura Street

Paulina, La. 70763

Attn: Lance Weber

(Note: Flood Relief Fund)

 

 

CHRISTIAN ORGANIZATIONS:

Many Christian organizations have reached out with tremendous support. Some take absolutely NO overhead for their mission work and have been on the ground serving food, demolishing houses, providing medical services, and offering shelter and emotional support from Day One.

United Methodists Committee on Relief (UMCOR) takes NO overhead expenses. All donations through UMCOR are handled through church apportionments so 100% goes to those in need. They have established a donation link specifically designated for the Louisiana Flood relief effort, and they have had people on the ground making a real difference. http://www.umcor.org/umcor/resources/news-stories/2016/august/lafloods

Another Christian organization that donates 100% of donations directly to flood relief is the Louisiana Baptists (chapter of the Southern Baptist Association). Learn more about their direct work with the Louisiana flood communities and donate online: https://louisianabaptists.org/disasterrelief

Catholic Charities also has a disaster fund established. While this is not specifically designated for the Louisiana flood, they have been on the ground feeding and helping people since Day One. Nearly everyone I know has received a meal from Catholic Charities. Delicious, freshly cooked, nourishing meals.  https://support.catholiccharitiesusa.org/donate_page/disasteroperations

Operation Blessing International has had teams on the ground helping locals clean, demo, and rebuild their homes. They continue to bring in volunteers and have provided updated videos and posts to document their efforts: http://www.ob.org/tag/2016-louisiana-floods/

The Salvation Army is a national non-profit that takes little overhead and has been on the ground making a difference in Louisiana. Visit their website for more information and to donate directly to the Louisiana Flood Relief fund: https://secure20.salvationarmy.org/donation.jsp

 

If you know of organizations that are making a difference in Louisiana or who wish to be added to this list, please email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Thank you for your compassion and support.

 

Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to act. –Proverbs 3:27 NIV

 

I have listed a few of my original Facebook posts below (unedited). I hope this gives you a better idea of what Louisiana people are facing.

August 24, 2016

Please understand what is happening in Louisiana. Imagine... one day you are a normal middle class American family. The next, everything you have ever worked for has been claimed by the flood. You now have no car. No job. No home. No belongings. No schools for your kids. And if you happen to be one of the lucky ones who somehow managed to get a decent hotel room anywhere near your home town, you are here with hundreds in your same situation and even the lower floors of the hotel have been flooded. Stores within walking distance are closed from the flood. You may not know where your pets are. You may have lost important papers required to apply for the little government support services you may or may not qualify for. You are told so much conflicting information; you no longer know what to believe. You are exhausted and all you want is to go home and sleep in your own bed. But there is no bed. And the home you have paid a mortgage on for years now needs to be completely gutted and renovated with your own money. Money you do not have because you, like many in these parts, have worked your entire life to barely make ends meet. You have never accepted a hand out or government assistance. You have never been on the receiving end of charity and it hurts to accept help. It's not what we do here in Louisiana. You will find a way, somehow, but for now... you just want to find a quiet, clean place for your family to rest. You want to wash the clothes you have been wearing for days, and feed them a home-cooked meal at a table with silverware. You want to read a book or find some saved photos and gain some sense of normalcy away from the chaos of destruction. The people around you are beginning to look like zombies as you all feel so sleep deprived you can barely think anymore. You need to get your family out of this hotel because not everyone here is safe. A few are addicts growing desperate for a fix. Others are mentally unstable people on the brink of danger because of the stressful conditions. Stories circulate and anxieties build. You may have a loved one with you with special needs. You feel responsible for keeping everyone together and well. So, you pray for peace and safety as you start another long day of clean up. You learn to accept the kindness of strangers and you cling to hope. You look around and realize all those things you complained about a week ago were not problems at all. You hug your family and you count your blessings and you begin again. You survive. #Louisiana #flood

 

August 22, 2016

PM: In life, the words of an enemy are never as damaging as the silence of a friend. Thanks to all of you who have expressed sincere compassion for the people of Lousiana. We will never forget who has stepped up either physically, financially, or emotionally. Means more than you will ever know. The road ahead is a long one, but we are grateful that we are not taking this journey alone. Much love!

AM: It's been said, if you really want to see a person's true nature, put them in a traumatic situation. Well, in the last week, I have observed nearly everyone I know and love endure a catastrophic event, and still they are nowhere near the finish line. Yet, they have revealed the most generous, selfless, faithful, kind, courageous, resilient spirits anyone could ever desire to have. I have lived all around this country, traveled many parts of our world, and met more people in my life than most, but I will stand by the fact that no other group of people has the kind of heart that Louisiana people have. Poor in monetary status? Yes, most are. Poor in spirit? Not at all. #louisianastrong

August 21, 2016

LOUISIANA UPDATE: Where to begin? We are exhausted and overwhelmed but oh so grateful for oh so much. I'm extremely worried about my family and friends and hometown communities and hoping those of you who have read The Feathered Bone will take a moment to support the people and places behind that story. I have such immeasurable love and admiration for my people, more so now that ever. They are traumatized, as entire communities have been left without homes, vehicles, schools, or jobs. Many of these people had relocated after Hurricane Katrina, leaving their beloved neighborhoods in other areas to build a new life in a place that has now been destroyed again. Others have deep roots here and live on family property, meaning all of their relatives have flooded and there is no safe place for them to land. Many operate, own, or are employed by businesses that have also flooded, so they are now unemployed. As described earlier, this happened so quickly, most had no time to prepare (including my mother). Those who did have a couple hours warning, including my father who lives near Bayou Manchac, did all they could to prevent the flood waters from entering their homes. Sandbags, raised furniture, attic storage. But in the end, the water wins. Many of these homes have been filled with thick mud, worms, fish, frogs, and snakes. Many sewer lines continue to bubble and back into streets and homes. On top of that, the heat and humidity has allowed mold to thrive in the wet structures. Trust me, you cannot imagine the smell. Many people have posted frustration that shelters have surplus supplies no one is taking. Please understand, many people have no transportation and those who do are working sun-up to sun-down trying to tackle the immediate clean-up needs. Many people have established incredible food distribution centers and that is very helpful, but eaxh day when we were once again neck-deep in saturated insulation and mud-caked debris, we so appreciated the folks who not only cooked the food but delivered it to us, realizing the last thing any of us had time to do was to drive across town for lunch. Others have shown up with storage boxes and helped organize some of the salvageable things. There is no safe place to put them, however, and I am seeing families struggle with finding ways to preserve the limited items they have left. Other practical struggles are things many never consider. Those who live in apartments or condos or townhouses with shared interior walls now have completely open quarters with adjoining neighbors. Tarps are needed to tack between dwellings to form a little sense of privacy and to help keep young children and pets from roaming into other areas. Ice has been impossible to find, and yes...it is hot down here. Many air conditioning units are dysfunctional and fans have been difficult to find because everyone is using them to help dry their dwellings. The positive outlook and strong spirit continues to inspire me, but hearts are hurting and bones are weary and many people can be helped by taking time to listen to their story. Hear them. See them. Pray with them. Feed them. House them. Foster their pets. Care for their children. Store their remaining belongings. Bring them some allergy medicine or gloves or masks. Let them borrow a car. Run some errands for them. Show up and offer a hug and and cup of coffee or bring them to your home for a fresh shower and warm meal in a peaceful place away from the chaos. Recognize that in a moment, your life could change too. And at any time, this could be you. Thank you to the countless people who have been the hands and feet of God. #louisianastrong #flood

 

August 19, 2016

 

First chance I have had to put my head around all that is happening in#Louisiana. We are on Day 5 now (I think. Time has become fuzzy.) I witnessed more than a few people sobbing yesterday. The emotional fatigue is worse than the physical. Reality is setting in now for those who have lost their homes, vehicles, etc. The shock is wearing off and the strain is real. Imagine...you are in your #BatonRouge home. A home that was built on high land. No #flood plain. No history of having ever been flooded. You have no flood insurance. Few people do in this area. You know it is raining. It rains nearly every day in these parts. Heavy storms don't worry you. But this time the rain doesn't stop. It rains apx. 19 inches in 24 hours (and keeps raining for days). The pretty lake where your grandchildren fish is rising high as you take your little dog for a quick walk in the rain. By the time you get back to your door, the water is following you. It keeps coming, quickly, and before you can react, it is three feet deep in your living room. You don't know how much higher it will rise. The roads are too flooded to leave by car. You live alone. You are a fortunate one who does not have to climb onto your roof or cling to the limbs of a tree or perch in our attic. You have a second floor, and you hustle to pull as many dry items as you can to higher quarters. You can't save much. You can't believe what is happening and your mind struggles to process. You try to devise a plan, slowly realizing muddy waters from the bayous and rivers are now claiming your home as their own. It happened so quickly. How much higher will the waters rise? Weather alerts are now firing disaster warnings. Millennial records are shattered. The flooding is affecting such a broad area, cell phones fail. Your landline no longer works. The night is long. Can you get to your neighbor's house? At least then, you would have each other. But the waters are even deeper outside and you don't know what's in the water. Is it safe? Then the #CajunNavy arrives via canoe. You have to hurry. Get in. What do you grab? Your dog. You get your dog. You can't think of anything else. Oh, here's a bag. You throw in a few clothes. Where will you go from here? You don't know. Your entire community is nearly under water. Hotels are packed. Shelters have been flooded and are being relocated to second and then third locations. Your out-of-town relatives cannot reach your #EastBatonRouge home because roads are closed. A friend steps in, says come with me. She has a hotel room. Her boss has offered to pay for it. You crash there for 2 nights. You learn to use Facebook messenger to make calls. It proves to be the only reliable source of communication, even though the connection fails frequently. You wait out the storms in the hotel, hoping roads will open so you can assess the damage. You begin to hear stories that Denham Springs has been 90 percent flooded. You know nearly everyone in that town and you don't know of anyone who didn't flood. You teach in that town, and the schools are under water. An entire community has gone under water. You think of Atlantis. Then you hear Walker is 75 percent flooded. You know even more people in that town where you reared your children. Nearly everyone you know in Walker has flooded too. The Walker church you have attended for decades becomes a #LivingstonParish shelter, as it did during Katrina. You slowly realize this is worse than Katrina. Yet the hotel television airs not a single news report about the devastating situation happening outside your window. You rely on Facebook for vital information. #Facebook becomes a lifeline for countless people who are posting in need of rescue, reunification, lost pets, road dangers, etc. Facebook friends who happen to see your daughter's posts are shocked. They have no idea the flood has occurred. You see photos on Facebook. Countless rescues, floating caskets, submerged churches and houses and schools. Stranded motorists, scared pets, a missing woman with dementia last seen in a nightgown, a child with autism trapped at home alone. It is still raining. Waters continue to rise. Rivers cannot handle the backflow. Bayous top their catchbasins. You are a fortunate one. You have a hotel room with a friend. Others are spending a 2nd or 3rd night trapped in a car, an attic, a roof, or on a hard floor in a shelter packed with strangers and babies and dogs. Others are in boats helping rescue or serving at shelters or taking in strangers. By day 3, the flooded roads are beginning to open. A friend gives you a black dress from Walmart and the keys to her car so you can attend a funeral for a well-respected friend and community leader whose services would have normally included hundreds if not thousands of people. Fewer than 20 have found a way to attend, including relatives. A second friend says come stay at our home. We are dry. You go, gratefully. You can get to your home now to access the damage. The waters have receded. Everything in your lower levels has been soaked in 3 feet of dirty water but you know others who have it worse. You hear their stories. 6 feet. 8 feet. Above the roof. Everything is coated in mud. The smell is of decay. You are overwhelmed and exhausted but you cannot delay. Clean up begins. Relatives can finally reach you from out of town. Friends bring food and cleaning supplies. Neighbors helping neighbors. Strangers helping strangers. No one goes hungry. No one stands alone. You know you will get through this. You know you are fortunate. But, still, there are moments when you break. As you discard the antiques you saved from your ancestors. Or as your family photos wilt and mold. Or as the trunk your father carried to college on a train fails to have protected the tiny clothes your son (now deceased) wore as an infant or the stamps your father tenderly collected for decades or the hand-stiched heirlooms made by the women of your family who have long left this world. You have moments when you stare at the massive pile of rubble at the curb where nearly everything you have worked for your entire life now crumbles into an ashy, toxic mix of sheetrock and insulation and mud and mold. There are moments when you cry. But then, someone offers you a snocone. Or a plate of jambalaya. Someone else collects those moldy stamps your father loved and offers to try to restore them. Someone else takes your grandmother's silver that survived more than one war and relocation. She will polish away the mud and the muck. People send texts and Facebook messages letting you know they care. They rally the troops and revive your spirit and remind you life is good. As your loved ones gut your home, leaving only the tired wet bones to dry, you have no idea how long it will be demolished. Your #FEMA application is pending, and even if approved, the funding is low and limited. Your fears are many. Anxiety comes in waves. The future is unclear. And yet, your #faith is deep and your will is strong. When morale starts to sink, the neighbors gather under your carport for food and drink and story and laughter. When joints ache and head pounds, someone else steps in to carry the load. And minute by minute, hour by hour, day by day, you count your blessings. You look back on your life and realize how many times you survived when you thought you might not be able to go another day. You inhale. You exhale. You hug your family. You pray. You survive. And when someone from far away criticizes your homestate and the people of Louisiana, saying in a vindictive tone that this is the work of God, you look around at the thousands of people who are feeding, clothing, sheltering, stewarding, tending, rescuing, supporting, protecting, loving, sharing, and caring for life in all its many forms, and you say, Yes. This IS the work of God. #Louisianastrong

 

 

Julie Cantrell is a New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author whose latest novel, THE FEATHERED BONE, highlights the Louisiana communities she calls home. These towns were the hardest hit in last week's floods. Learn more: www.juliecantrell.com 

 

BIG NEWS and SPECIAL OFFERS!

Saturday, 23 January 2016 17:29

Happy Mardi Gras, sweet friends!

Raise your hands and scream and shout. I'm about to "throw you something!"

WHY: Because I'm SUPER excited to welcome readers into the magical, mystical world of Louisiana. THE FEATHERED BONE launches TUESDAY, Jan. 26!

WHAT: In hopes of sharing my love for my home state, I've compiled family recipes pulled straight from the pages of THE FEATHERED BONE. I've also added behind-the-scenes stories about my own Louisiana childhood and the beautiful culture that sings my soul. This special offer is yours FREE when you pre-order THE FEATHERED BONE! In Louisiana, we call this Lagniappe (a little something extra) from my heart to yours.

HOW:

1. Pre-Order THE FEATHERED BONE from ANY bookseller by Monday, January 25.

2. Email your receipt to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and we'll email you the digital pdf file of the cookbook.

TIP: But please HURRY because this special bonus offer ends JANUARY 25!

PLUS: In Louisiana, we believe the more the merrier. So please tell your peeps to join the party!

Laissez les bon temps rouler! 

 

 

What are booksellers saying about THE FEATHERED BONE?

  • Okra Pick 2016
  • Ingram Top Pick 2016

What are reviewers saying about THE FEATHERED BONE?

  • Library Journal Starred Review
  • RT Reviews 4 1/2 stars and Top Pick
  • Official Pulpwood Pick 2016

Hungry for More?

Thanks for reading!

Peace,

julie

April is BOTH National Sexual Assault Awareness Month and National Child Abuse Prevention Month.

In hopes of drawing attention to these important issues, David C. Cook is offering WHEN MOUNTAINS MOVE for FREE across ALL E-Book Platforms through April. 16.

Please click to DOWNLOAD your free copy of this novel today, and please share with others who may find hope and healing in this inspirational story.

Also, be sure to check out my latest newsletter to discover important statistics, resources, and updates.

Thanks for your continued commitment to making this world the best it can be.

Peace and love to all — and Happy Reading!

julie

The Survivor's Side of Suicide

Monday, 08 September 2014 22:09

Suicide is one ugly word. It’s the kind of word that swings heavy from lips. The kind that is whispered, and stilted, never sung.

As an author, I build my life around words. Every word has worth. Even those words we are not supposed to say.

 But suicide is the one word I do not like. I wish there was no need for such a word in our world. Especially since 1997, when my teen brother ended his own life two months before his high school graduation.

 It is one thing to be on the other side of suicide, where you may offer prayer or casseroles or even a hug. It is another thing entirely to be on the side of the survivor, after a loved one puts a gun to the head or a rope to the neck or a blade to the vein.

 That dark depth of despair is no easy channel to navigate because unlike every other form of death, this one was intentional. This one could have been prevented. This one carries immeasurable sting.

When Mountains Move Wins 2014 Carol Award

Tuesday, 30 September 2014 21:30

 

Amanda Bostic and Julie Cantrell
Amanda Bostic and Julie Cantrell

This weekend, I traveled to St. Louis, Mo. to join nearly a thousand folks for the 2014 Carol Awards Gala.

When Mountains Move had been shortlisted as one of three finalists in the Historical Fiction category, alongside two extraordinarily talented authors: Liz Tolsma for Snow on the Tulips (a stunning WWII tale), and Diana Wallis Taylor for Claudia, Wife of Pontius Pilate (a fresh look at this historical icon).

I was stunned (to say the least) when Millie’s story was selected. The Carol Award was formerly known as “ACFW’s Book-of-the-Year Contest” before being renamed in honor of editor-extraordinaire, Carol Johnson.

What an honor it was to join so many talented authors who were being recognized for the LONG hours and HARD work they have put into building works of fiction.