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Bethany Hamilton
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Brand Bethany keeps teen surfer, family busy

Honolulu Advertiser - Honolulu, HI, USA - Bethany Hamilton's comeback story has given rise to a cottage industry of books, films, product endorsements and speaking engagements.

Each member of her family, her brother's girlfriend and a close family friend are involved in the enterprises.

One of her most successful efforts was her biography, "Soul Surfer: A True Story of Faith, Family, and Fighting to Get Back on the Board," which sold 360,000 hardback and 450,000 paperback copies.

She also has a book of advice for girls, "Ask Bethany: FAQs on Surfing, Faith and Friends," which evolved out of the deluge of e-mails that Bethany didn't have time to answer one-by-one.

Other books published under the Bethany banner are two daily devotionals, a "Soul Surfer Bible" and a series of four young-adult novels with Bethany as the main character.

Becky Baumgartner, a 23-year-old Kaua'i resident who dates Bethany's oldest brother, Noah, thinks of Bethany as "a little sister" and works full time as her personal assistant.

Baumgartner also directed a 30-minute documentary video about Bethany, "Heart of A Soul Surfer," which started showing at film festivals last year and has been distributed to 7,000 churches for use in youth ministries.

A screenplay for a feature-length film based on Bethany's story is under way and filming is supposed to start this fall, Baumgartner said. No actress has been selected for the lead role, but Bethany will do the surfing, Baumgartner said.

While Bethany continues to be requested as a motivational speaker to church groups, that schedule has slowed this year because the pro surfing tour is so demanding, Baumgartner said.

One of her largest engagements was a "Rock the Universe" Christian music conference at Universal Studios in Florida last fall.

Bethany doesn't prepare a speech, but "speaks from her heart," Baumgartner said, and each event is different.
Source : Originally Published Honolulu Advertiser - Honolulu, HI, USA, Jun 1, 2008
Celebrities : Bethany Hamilton
Categories : Celebrity Marketing News, Speakers News
Posted 6/1/2008 12:06:26 AM | Permalink
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