Young Adult Book IT CAN BE DONE Offers Practical Lessons For Life-Long Success
A night in jail. A moonshine still. Unexpected romance. Dirty politics. Death.
Father-daughter authors Robert D. Hudson and Lauren Hudson delve into their family history, for their new book, "It Can Be Done: Students Leading an Exceptional America" (Headline Books, Inc.).
Based on real-life experiences of Robert's parents, who met in college, the nonfiction-narrative combines entertaining anecdotes with corresponding analyses that apply to everyday situations. The book is meant to inspire teenagers to begin thinking about what direction their lives will take and adopt essential character traits to improve their chances of long-term success.
"We write about fifteen principles that can lead to exceptionalism for the reader and for America," Robert explained. "The principles are hope, education, integrity, lifetime partnerships, work ethic, valuing family, connecting with community, respecting faith, avoiding debt, courage, honesty, competition, charity, freedom and patriotism. We call them Pillars of Exceptionalism."
"The book is about how two extraordinary characters, based on my grandparents, were able to accomplish great things, in spite of growing up in difficult circumstances and facing all kinds of challenges," Lauren said. "Everybody has problems and disappointments, but it's how you deal with them that can mean the difference between success and failure."
Though unmistakably conservative in tone, "It Can Be Done" refrains from partisan politics, and instead focuses on actions and attitudes that can be applied to virtually everyone's life.
"Just about everyone can agree that hard work is important," Robert Hudson said. "Even some of the principles that might seem open to debate, are really universal. When we write about respecting faith, we are not trying to tell readers to believe a certain way; just suggesting that it is important to respect how other people believe, or don't believe."
The book deals with basic issues that everyone can relate to," Lauren said. "When we write about avoiding debt, we address personal debt, national debt, and how different types of debt can be a problem at a personal level of for the country.”
"It Can Be Done" is Lauren's fourth book overall, and her second semi-nonfiction book with her father. She is the author of two, award-winning young adult (YA) novels, "The Ascension" and "The Deception," as well as "Our Best Tomorrow: Students Teaching Capitalism to America," which she wrote, at age 13, with her father. That one was aimed at teaching elementary and middle school students the basics of economics, through a series of short stories and commentary. As with the first book, Lauren wrote the narrative portions of "It Can Be Done," while Robert wrote much of the observational text.
"Lauren is better at writing stories in a way that is more entertaining," Robert said. "As an older person with more business experience, I was happy to write some of the analysis for the stories and to play second fiddle to a gifted young author.”
Now 19 years old, Lauren Hudson will soon begin her sophomore year at the University of Kentucky, where she is majoring in biology. Robert Hudson is a Northern Kentucky-based attorney focusing primarily on labor and employment law.