The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

Lopez finds success in writing, will publish memoir

A life of trauma and pain, determination and hope. It seems unfair to try to sum up the captivating life of Victor Lopez in only a few words. That is why a new book will give full justice to his story.

Lopez, a CCE senior English major, will publish his memoirs, “Victor’s Luck,” in the next year.

The opportunity for publication came to Lopez after his piece “Transcending Trauma” won the annual Student Writing Contest for The Nation Magazine while he attended Guilford Technical Community College.

Lopez received attention from agents and publishers. After 290 pages and a five-figure advance from a publisher, his memoir is heading into the editing stages. As of yet, Lopez does not know an exact publication date but hopes to see it published in 2014.

His book will focus on luck and perseverance amid growing up in foster homes throughout the country and experiencing life-long trauma.

“A lot of people who know me now know me as a mysterious, outgoing 32-year-old who has a story,” said Lopez. “I now have an attorney as a father and a doctor as a mother, so others probably assume I’m some spoiled rich kid, and that’s not the case.”

Lopez said he grew up in a toxic environment created by an unstable and abusive biological family and lived in 40 foster homes and three group homes during his early years before being adopted. His adopted parents were killed when he was 14, which returned him to a life without a steady home.

Throughout his youth, he bounced around the country, encountering homelessness, incarceration and constant upheaval.

After hearing his story on a radio show, Elaine Feraru corresponded with Lopez and took him in as her adopted son. She worked with him to develop his grammar and writing skills and was his main inspiration for writing his winning essay and eventually, his memoir.

“I forced him to write,” said Feraru in a phone interview. “I bugged him everyday. We joke that I am the editor-in-chief of his life.”

Without Feraru’s influence, Lopez said he probably would not have entered the essay contest in the first place. Though Lopez said he never intended to get published, he always wanted to write his story and said the process has been therapeutic for him.

“Time and time again I’ve been told by others that my story will help someone else,” said Lopez. “It’s like one big ‘it gets better’ story with a couple of twists in the middle.”

Lopez has always had a passion for the raw art of storytelling. At around age 26, he started getting published and a year later, came to Guilford College where he further honed his craft.

Through work on The Guilfordian and in English classes, Lopez developed his academic writing abilities and distinctive style.

Assistant Professor of English Mylène Dressler said Lopez’s honesty, clarity and unadorned prose were some of the qualities that made him stand out to her as a writer as well as his obvious passion for writing.

Lopez plans to attend law school and continue a life of helping people. He hopes that whoever his story reaches will be inspired, whether they themselves are in a bad position or have the ability to help someone who is.

“There’s a lot of ‘unhappy’ in the book,” said Lopez. “I’ve gone through a lot in life, but there has to be an upside. Most people would have said my story was finished at a very young age, but I just kept on going.”

[photomosaic nggid=188]

View Comments (2)
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Nellie Vinograd
Nellie Vinograd, Video Editor
Senior SOAN and English double major, Communications and Film double minor Nellie hopes the video team will continue its excellent tradition of producing creative and popular videos while also taking on challenging and professional stories. There are a lot of topics for the video team to explore ranging from local Guilford news to global social justice issues, which the team can cover in a way that is both artistic and journalistic.

Comments (2)

The Guilfordian intends for this area to be used to foster healthy, thought-provoking discussion. Comments are expected to adhere to our standards and to be respectful and constructive. As such, we do not permit the use of profanity, foul language, personal attacks, or the use of language that might be interpreted as libelous. Comments are reviewed and must be approved by a moderator to ensure that they meet these standards. The Guilfordian does not allow anonymous comments, and requires a valid email address. The email address will not be displayed but will be used to confirm your comments.
All The Guilfordian Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • D

    Debbie CeceFeb 8, 2014 at 3:31 pm

    You certainly did keep going! So proud of you, Victor.

  • R

    Rusty Van PattenFeb 7, 2014 at 10:57 pm

    Can’t wait to get my hands on it!