Melissa A. Bond
After Hurricane Katrina hit in 2005, Melissa flew to Biloxi for six weeks to support efforts to run supplies such as water, food and first aid to the people still in Biloxi. Four months later, she and two other friends raised money to bring additional supplies to the 9th Ward in New Orleans. While there, Melissa and her friends helped tear down soggy drywall and support the people in the 9th Ward in sifting through the remains of their homes. In the evenings, Melissa would write. Upon their return, Melissa and her fellow artists created a multi-media show of their time in New Orleans and toured the show through Houston, San Francisco, New Orleans and Salt Lake City.
Melissa ran a Kickstarter to support the writing of her current book, which details her shocking dependency upon the Ativan her doctor had prescribed for sleep. The Kickstarter funded in three days. The first draft of the book won second place in the Utah Original Writer’s Competition. Poe Ballantine judged and called the book, “poetic and lyrical … having been elevated to a work of art.” While writing the book, Melissa also wrote for the national blogs Mad in America and Ravishly, all while raising two hilarious children. Her son is the inspiration behind her short film, Gooogled, which premiered at the San Jose International Short Film Festival in 2016.