Writers Spotlight: Alexandra Heep

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Red was wiping down the counter while she waited for an order of beignets. When Claret popped them into the grill window, Red grabbed them and two mocha lattes before she headed over to another redhead out on the patio. She wondered if Alex was working on a guest post for M3 or another book of poetry.

M3: Lots of the M3 Readers have been getting to know you since your recent guest post while I am on vacation. How about giving them the book jacket version of Alexandra Heep?

AH: Alexandra Heep always had an interest in writing, but did not start pursuing her passion until 2007. She has been a full-time copy writer on a freelance basis since April 2011. Love, Life and Time is her first book.

M3: Can you give me the pared down list of who you would like to thank?

AH: My boyfriend, Tom, because he unlocked what I call the lighthearted side of me I did not know I had. He was the inspiration behind my book. I also want to thank my writer friends, too many to mention individually, and I don’t want to forget about anyone because they have always encouraged me.

M3: You do have a large following of writerly colleagues. How do you feel about them?

Alexandra HeepAH: Many I hold really dear and are good friends. Others are valuable mentors and friends. I feel a connection to most.

M3: Tom inspired this book, but you are not new to the writing game. Where did you start on the road to publishing?

AH: I started on several online writing websites. I remember the date I decided to become a writer: June 13, 2007. I had not done any writing prior to then, despite excelling at it in school decades ago.

M3: I love that answer. Half of the people I know write because someone thought they were awful at it. What advice do you have for newbie writers?

AH: Forget about bad stuff from the past that might inhibit your goals. In my case it took me 30 years to get over one teacher in Elementary school who scribbled the German equivalent of “lacks imagination” on an assignment because I did not give the answers he liked. Don’t wait 30 years like I did to follow a passion! Yet, balance this out by being able to accept constructive criticism to help you grow.

M3: So, you are both! Quelle surprise! We all know this economy is bone dry. Has it changed the way you perform?

AH: Hah, it’s because of the economy I have to perform. In essence, it had a hand in creating the writer in me. I found myself with few options. This was the one that coincides with my passion. I call it mountain climbing.

M3: Exercise of the mind. Anyone in the audience going to be interested in your day job?

AH: It’s funny, up until 2009 I had one, and used to daydream of what I could do if I did not have one. Well, Karma kicked me in the rear, and here I am. As they say, be careful what you ask.

M3: Mothers everywhere are proud to hear you say that. So, is time an issue?

AH: Time is not so much an issue as energy. Everyone has 24 hours per day, but I find that energy really is the determining factor of how much we get done. Outside influences, like demanding people, jobs, kids, health issues, etc. rob us of energy. Some things we can control; others we can’t. Since I have a large, non-controllable energy-drainer (how is that for syntax), writing is pretty much all I do. I even forget to eat at times.

M3: Have a beignet. I skipped breakfast, too. If you do not stop to eat, do you ever go on hiatus?

AH: My creative side goes on hiatus, yes, because I have to make a living first by writing stuff for others. However, sometimes the muse won’t be silenced, and I have written poems on article documents because I did not even take the time to open a new document. Dangerous business, I know … imagine copying and pasting the wrong stuff.

M3: That may just be one of the best reasons I have to write at M3. And I would return your poem if you sent it to me…but only after I had read it a couple times. What are you cooking up at the moment?

AH: I started a novella in 2010, but it has been on hold due to other obligations. I do have an idea of creating a Feng Shui e-book for beginners.  The articles are written, I just have to overhaul them. I am also thinking of publishing some of my recipes, once I have unearthed them from storage. My boyfriend is also working on a logo for me, and I plan on using it to renew my online presence.

M3: A replacement for the shield? Hmm. Tell me why this book is close to your heart.

Love Life and Time PoetryAH: Because it is my first work that has come completely from the heart. I used to snicker at people who saw the world in rose-colored glasses, until I became one of them. My future work will contain more of a mind/heart balance.

M3: (Raspberries) Write what you want. You write sensible …searching for a non-expletive… things for clients. Poetry has been a topic of conversation around M3 for a great while. Do you think the genre is in revival?

AH: From my personal stand point: yes, as I used to write very dark poetry. In general, I think so too as poetry has become more free in style, in my opinion.

M3: Preaching to the choir (who writes poems with thirteen feet regularly). If you took a break from the dark side with this one, what makes it stand out from the pack?

AH: It breaks rules. I know that the use of pronouns is frowned upon in poetry, and I included some poems that break that rule. However, I don’t think they alienate the reader, and I included other styles. Plus, I balanced the book out with technical poetry (haiku, even a Shakespearean sonnet) that simply show time and life in a way a lot of us can relate.

M3: Oh, for cripes’ sake, do not tell Mantra that. Knowing all the technical writing you do, did this genre pick you?

AH: Oh, yes. Robbed me of sleep; then, came to me in the dream when I did sleep, then woke me up and poked me.

M3: Probably the main reason Mantra may not have a Facebook account. Let’s circle back to money. How important is your marketing effort on social media?

AH: Still learning the ropes. I understand the importance, just trying to figure out how to implement.

M3: You are in a crowded boat there. Any triumph over the industry thus far?

AH: Every day that I am alive and still here, being able to do what I do, is a victory for me.

M3: Here, here. You have been really honest about the struggles you face. Anything in particular I should just keep between us?

AH: I played Fluegelhorn for a few years in church when I was a child. After all, acne, bad teeth and glasses were already enough to label me a loser in school, so not something I wanted to get out!

M3: I think the recital is now available on iTunes. Be your own best agent. In 15 words or less, why should the M3 Readers buy your book?

AH: You might discover and unlock facets of your personality. Poems are reflective, positive and uplifting.

M3: And we could all use a little more light in our lives. Looking forward to doing this again. You will have to hep me feng shui the café.

~~~~~~~~~~


Dearest M3 Readers,

Take a moment to stop by Alexandra’s blog. Get to know the author and get updates on her work and upcoming books by connecting with her on Twitter. Stop by and grab a copy of Love, Life and Time.

When you tweet and +1 this post, please use the hashtags #books, #poetry and #authors.

Thank you for your continued support of the authors of the M3 Coffee Shoppe.

Red.

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21 Comments

  1. i had a great imagination when I was a kid….like imagining putting a tack on the chair of a teacher who wrote stupid things on my paper.
    Bearman recently posted..WWE Sheamus Lipschitz SignMy Profile

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    • Haha, actually for a child I had very little of it, I must admit. My parents were believers in teaching reality, the harsher, the better. Even toys and books were wastes of money and time.

      I suppose most in my situation would have created a fantasy world, but I never did. Not until much later, anyway. As they say, it’s never too late.
      Alexandra Heep recently posted..What’s Your Chocolate?My Profile

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    • Wait, it wasn’t you?

      Reply
  2. If you ever “figure out how to implement” the marketing thing, you can let us know. I think most of us creative types are pretty clueless. Creating is easy; marketing is a mystery.
    Binky recently posted..True KnowledgeMy Profile

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    • Indeed! I have read many “best sellers” that leave me scratching my head how the authors managed to make millions. Music of course is the same way. Then again, creative works are at the mercy of subjectivity a lot, in my opinion.
      Alexandra Heep recently posted..What’s Your Chocolate?My Profile

      Reply
  3. “Every day that I am alive and still here, being able to do what I do, is a victory for me…” A H
    ISN’T THAT THE TRUTH 🙂
    WOWOWOWOWOWOWOWO 🙂
    LOVELY BEAUTIFUL AND TO THE POIGNANT WITH INTENT XOXOX
    CAT
    Cat Forsley recently posted..Sunshiny Wednesday – Cat Forsley ©My Profile

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  4. I MEANT POIGNANT WITH INTENT XO
    Cat Forsley recently posted..Sunshiny Wednesday – Cat Forsley ©My Profile

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  5. Alex, your guest post brought part of you into view for me, but my passion is poetry, and I can’t wait to get your book and read the gems! I also would love to hear from you how you developed the balance between dark and light…….the majority of my work is dark, or haunting, but falling in love was an inspiration for me to soar above it. Has it been so for you?
    Gailxxx
    Gail Thornton recently posted..Poem – Last Night’s DreamMy Profile

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    • Gail, I am not sure at times if I am in balance, my dark dreams would suggest I am not at times.

      Other than that, love was the way, yes.

      Before that … my cat. And faith I guess. Thinking that there is always a choice and recognizing that when when say we have no choice, we simply mean we don’t like the consequences of the other option.
      Alexandra Heep recently posted..What’s Your Chocolate?My Profile

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  6. Great interview, Alexandra and Red! Interesting take on poetry..poetry speaks to me in it’s own voice–it is what it is–regardless of format. The words are most important. We should remember, the format is only a chosen technicality of organization and style–if words are poorly chosen, regardless of ‘form’ — it fails in it’s primary purpose–to awaken the mind. It matters not if it has 11 heads and 13 feet.
    Alexandra, one thing you should know-you have been interviewed by the best! ~R
    raymond alexander kukkee recently posted..Apples AND Tomatoes to GoMy Profile

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    • Ahhh … I used to think that technicalities mattered not until I read critiques. These people tore up poetry and scoffed at the lack of structure and lack of English education. So, I tried for a balance.
      Alexandra Heep recently posted..What’s Your Chocolate?My Profile

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  7. Terrific interview Alex. Some thing were familiar, some were complete surprises. You’re such a character.

    Reply
  8. interesting review…it gives great insight to a newbie writer like. I have just started last year, and all I did so far is short story. I still lack the energy to write a full novel or at least a novella. I should take Alexandra’s step as a motivation.

    Reply
  9. What a truly interesting interview this one was. Fancy that – 30 YEARS. How on earth do we allow this to happen within ourselves? Lacks imagination, my arse.

    I SO TOTALLY RELATE to the comment about outside factors being energy drainers. Absolutely.

    It is wonderful to read of a woman who has dreamed, & done it. Is living it this day, & me – I’m still in my “day job”….. Terrific interview, Red.
    Noeleen recently posted..First Class and a Screaming BabyMy Profile

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    • Well, a stable day job can be a blessing. It depends on how they treat you there. Unfortunately, current circumstances allow pretty much anything at the employee’s cost.

      I started writing when still gainfully employed. Who knows where I would be now had I not laid that foundation?

      Reply
  10. Great interview, you two!!!
    Alexandra, after I read your guest post here on M3, I became inexplicably drawn to your writing – I still don’t know if it is your style, your content, or your soul shining through…
    Whatever it is, there is just something compelling about your writing… I’d LOVE to win a copy, as I’m in the broke pile forever!!! so I will enter again!
    I must look up Uriah Heep – any (intentional or otherwise) resemblance in the name? (I did read your Helium article, just now)
    I can’t wait to read more of you – I’m so glad to meet you!!

    🙂
    janet
    BuddhaKat recently posted..First, from this Friday Fractalist…My Profile

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