Andrea Lucado joins our chat circle this week. My husband and I have had the privilege of knowing Andrea and her family for about twenty-five years. I watched Andrea grow from a little tyke crawling around on the church pews to the beautiful debut author of English Lessons.
Please join our conversation. Andrea is offering an autographed book to someone who comments below. I will announce the winner next Tuesday, the 30th, on this site, Facebook, and Twitter.
Congratulations to Marilyn Ridgway, winner of an autographed copy of English Lessons. All Marilyn did was comment, so join in this coming week’s chat for a chance to win another author’s book.
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Andrea Lucado, the girl
I grew up in San Antonio, Texas. As a pastor’s daughter, church felt like my home. I spent as much time there as I did in our house. I knew every hallway and back staircase. I learned about Jesus in that church. It’s where I met some of my lifelong best friends and where I felt most comfortable.
From San Antonio, I traveled to West Texas to attend school at Abilene Christian University and studied abroad in Oxford. I fell in love with the city and vowed to go back and live there one day.
After I graduated from ACU, I did just that. I lived in Oxford for a year and attended a school called Oxford-Brookes University where I earned my master’s in English Literature. I also started blogging while I was there. I prophetically titled my blog “English Lessons.” (Tweet That!)
Andrea Lucado, the grown-up author
English Lessons: The Crooked Path of Growing Toward Faith released May 2, and man, has it been a journey. The writing process was pretty organic. I sat down one morning at 5:30 before work (I was working in book publishing at the time) to write just for fun. I hadn’t done that in a long time. I thought I would write about women’s issues. Women in the church or women and beauty. Something like that.
Andrea’s Writing Journey
Instead, I wrote a story about two people I met while I was living abroad in Oxford. I wrote about the park we sat in, what the weather was like and what we had talked about. I wrote about how we walked to an ice cream shop and what I had worn. Navy shorts and a pink top. For the next several months I continued to get up at 5:30 on Mondays and write and all that came out were stories from Oxford.
After a few months of writing for fun, I started collecting these stories into essay-form. I sent a few to my dad (also a writer) and asked what he thought. With his encouragement I kept going until I had a good ten chapters finished. My dad’s agent, one of our best family friends, agreed to represent me. He has been such a gift!
I think the hardest part of the process was when it came time to send my work to the people I wrote about. Because it’s a memoir, I was required to get story release forms from most of the people mentioned in the book. That felt incredibly vulnerable and while most of my friends were very kind about the whole thing, a few of them were not thrilled to be in a book. I had to cut chapters and make major edits. It was hard to get their feedback but also a very stretching and strengthening time. I learned that as a writer, I will never please everyone. (Tweet That!)
What’s Next for Andrea Lucado
I haven’t started working on another book yet, but I hope to soon. I want to see through this release of English Lessons and be sure I do it well. Then, I will sit down and see what comes out. English Lessons is largely about faith and doubt. (Tweet That!)
The year I lived in England I asked those big questions: Why do I believe what I believe? Would I still be a Christian if I hadn’t been raised in a Christian home? Etc.
Now I ask different questions but they do include doubt. Doubt in God’s character, in his goodness. My relationship with him has deepened so much since Oxford. Perhaps my next book will be about that.
Where to find Andrea Lucado
Lord, You’re our refuge in times of trouble, our safe harbor in storms. You’re our good Shepherd who leads us into green pastures beside still waters. You restore us and feed us and comfort us. What more could we want? Thank you for Your faithfulness.
Bless Andrea as she seeks you and shares her insights with readers.
~ For Jesus’ sake