Just a Quick Note Before the Weekend to Say…

Hey Everyone!

So I haven’t fallen off the face of the earth. At least, not completely. I am still here and working hard for equality every day. In fact, it’s been such an insane couple of weeks that I can’t seem to even stop long enough to breathe and collect my thoughts in order to compile them into something coherent for you to read!img_3106

I realize this is a problem. Breathing is in fact, important. And I am aiming to do just that this weekend. But while I try to collect myself enough and calm my soul to write something half-way inspiring, let me give you a quick update of what’s been going on.

Here are a few of the things
I am doing and how you can engage with me:

1) First, Refocusing My Family endorsements have all come in this week and I am very excited about the list of people gracious enough to read and stand behind my work. Among these names are people like John Pavlovitz, David Gushee, Jennifer Knapp, Brian McLaren, Paula Williams, and Colby Martin. I am so humbled and honored by their support and can’t wait to share all of their comments with you!

2) Refocusing My Family should be available for pre-order on Amazon by June 15th! As soon as I hear it’s available, believe me, I will let you know.

 

How-to-bubble-map-83) We are in the process of nailing down speaking engagements and tour dates all across the country. We filmed a pre-released reading and interview last week and are putting together a press kit that should be ready to go out early this next week.  If you are wanting to help be “feet on the ground” to get either a speaking engagement or a book reading/signing event scheduled in your area, now is the time to step up and volunteer! You can email me with your interest and inquiries at Beyond.AmberCantorna@gmail.com.

4) We are still in desperate need of funding to get Beyond off the ground and to really spread the message of hope across the country. What we are doing now, we are doing in faith, believing that the funding we need will come through. We are looking for both personal and corporate sponsors. We have sponsorship packages we are offering to corporate sponsors that include marketing opportunities for their organization as well as incentives for personal sponsors available. All gifts are tax deductible. If you or someone you know may be interested in one of these options, please email me. We are open to sponsorships from churches, bookstores, LGBT centers, and LGBT affirming organizations/ministries as well as personal donors! So help me think outside the box!

5) Finally, if you blog, run a podcast, or write for a newspaper/magazine (or know someone who does) and would be interested in featuring a story on my upcoming book, please contact me! We are lining up interviews for the summer to get a strong push behind the book and need your help!

So those are a few of the main things going on in my world. I hope you will pick one of those ways to jump in and help. I’d love to have you as part of the process and get to know you better! And of course, I value your prayers, support, and messages of encouragement.

That’s all for now. I promise this next week I will stop long enough to breathe, decompress a bit, and write something more heart-felt to you all. But I’m grateful that you are understanding of the craziness that life brings on this journey and thankful that you are traveling along with me.

Because Love Makes All the Difference,

Amber88dc79_be21bf798a984fed8baeddb3760a59f4

Refocusing My Family and Beyond Update

Dear Friend,

     Since my last email to you announcing the launch of Beyond, many exciting things have happened!
 
     Refocusing My Family is currently being reviewed by people for endorsements. Among those willing to endorse the book are author/theologian Brian D. McLaren, singer/songwriter Jennifer Knapp, Christian ethicist David Gushee, film producer of “For the Bible Tells Me So” Daniel Karslake, and well known blogger and activist John Pavlovitz, as well as about a dozen others. I’m excited about this strong list of names and believe it will help in catching the eye of those who may not otherwise open the book. We are excited that it will be available for pre-order on Amazon in just a few weeks!
     Since the launch of Beyond, I have met with someone from Out Front Colorado that is helping us network with other LGBTQ+ organizations such as the Human Rights Campaign, the Matthew Shepard Foundation, PFLAG, and The LGBT Center. I also had an interview with another person from Out Front yesterday and they will be running an article on Beyond and my story in one of their upcoming editions.
     We’re also in the process of bringing a part-time intern on board to help with the many tasks that still lie ahead of us to really get Beyond up and running. I am interviewing a candidate this weekend and am excited about the prospect.
     As far as our fundraising campaign goes, we’ve had a handful of donations come through from people who follow us online or receive the weekly Beyond Blog. However, those donations have only covered about 2% of our total goal. We’ve scaled back our initial budget from $52,000 to $48,000 for this first year but we still have so very far to go in raising the needed funds. Part of this will be done through applying for grants and talking to larger corporations. However there are still a few ways you can help!
 

Three ways you can help:

1) Consider giving a tax-deductible gift to Beyond by visiting http://refocusingbeyond.org/donate/. Every donation counts! There is no amount too small!
2) Share and talk about this with your friends. The more we spread the word, the more people we can reach. Our goal through Beyond is to focus on helping LGBTQ+ people through their coming out process, especially those that come from conservative upbringings or strict religious families. There’s still so many people that need to hear a message of hope.
3) Consider whether your company may want to partner with us in this mission of social justice and activism. They can do that two ways. A) They can simply make a donation through the link above, OR B) They can consider being a sponsor and funding one or more of the cities on our upcoming speaking tour. By doing that, their company logo would then be placed on our marketing materials that we will be taking to our 16+ cities. If this seems like it may be a good fit for your company or for more information, please contact me at: Beyond.AmberCantorna@gmail.com.
   
 Thank you again for your love and support during this time. It is both exciting and overwhelming but I can’t wait to see what God does and the doors He opens for us in this coming year.

Because Love Makes All the Difference,

Amber Cantorna