Q&A With The Road to Hancock County: From Tragedy to Triumph Author And Inmate James Odell (Hancock County, Mississippi)

Amanda K. (BookBuzz)

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James Odell and his book The Road to Hancock CountyPhoto byJames Odell author of The Road to Hancock County

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James Odell is from Arlington Texas. He is forty-five years old and has three daughters. Author James Odell’s sole purpose in life now is to help those enslaved by the disease of addiction to make better choices. He plans to do this through education, treatment centers, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, and Jesus Christ. James Odell has spoken at multiple churches, schools, and treatment centers all over South Mississippi.

His new book The Road to Hancock County: From Tragedy to Triumph was released in December 2022 and James donates a portion of the proceeds to charities in the Hancock County area of Mississippi.

James Odell gives proceeds from his new book The Road to Hancock County to the Hancock County Food PantryPhoto byJames Odell Author of The Road to Hancock County

Author Q&A

What inspired you to write your first book?

My mentor and agent Dan Munger. I didn't like writing before I wrote the book. But I witnessed so many people die from drugs since I have been incarcerated and the lead instructor at the treatment classes here at the Hancock County Jail, that I decided I could help people better themselves and not make the same mistakes I did. Such as commit crime, become a drug addict, alcoholic, and a criminal.

How did you come up with the title?

The Apostle Paul who was converted to Christianity on "The Road to Damascus." Is a man who I have a lot in common with. Hence: "The Road to Hancock County."

Is there a message in your book that you want readers to grasp?

That there is hope and victory in Jesus Christ and no matter how far down the trough of life that we go we can all still bring hope and love to a dying world.

How much of the book is realistic?

It is all true! I changed the names, times, dates, and places to protect private citizens and business owner's that I worked for in the past.

Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

They are all my personal experiences and my take on them before and after my conversion to Christianity.

What books have most influenced your life most?

The Bible!

What are your current projects?

I have a second book in the United Kingdom that is titled "Stripped" right now. This new book will be released later this year.

Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.

Christian Life Fellowship Assembly of God in Picayune, Mississippi and Jacob's Well Baptist Church in Pass Christian, Mississippi.

Do you see writing as a career?

Oh yes, writing books like I write has a profound impact on the human spirit. I must keep writing to help others!

Can you share a little of your current work with us?

It is a book about the theology behind how I went from being an alcoholic, drug addict, liar, cheat, thief, con-man, and master manipulator. In a nut shell, it talks about how I went from being a con-man, to a Christian convert.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

The research from every angle and the years you spend in front of the computer. Hoping and praying you will help one person so the book will be a success.

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Amanda is a PR manager and book lover from Georgia. When she's not working, she enjoys spending time outdoors with her husband and two doggies.

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