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Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Inside the Mind: Maddisen Alexandra


Welcome to Inside the Mind where we here at The Faerie Review interview authors and creators.
Our guest today is Maddisen Alexandra, the author behind A Lens Without A Face.





Lily:  Thank you so much for agreeing to this interview Maddisen, I really enjoyed reading A Lens Without a Face. It’s a powerful collection of poetry, what inspired you to write it?
Maddisen:  I began writing this book at sixteen when I was suffering from a great deal of pain, mentally and physically. Each poem represents an emotion, situation, or random thought that appeared in my mind. The entire collection represents someone processing pain and demonstrates how one begins to cope while struggling through the highs and lows of the pain he, she, or they experience. 
Lily:  You definitely conveyed those feelings, I could feel them pouring out of the page. Out of all the poems included, do you have a favorite one?
Maddisen:  I do not necessarily have a favorite poem, but I do have favorite lines. From poem 47: “Gravity keeps us grounded/ When we ourselves cannot/ For it has a profound awareness/ Of the negligence we throw ourselves into.” Everytime I read these four lines, it helps me get out of my head. What these lines represent to me is an escape. It is comforting to think that the times I struggle to have my own back, there is always someone or something aware of what is going on, and that someone or something will be there for me. 
Lily:  It's a very powerful set of lines. Gravity is something that's always there no matter your beliefs, and it definitely keeps you grounded. There are 101 poems, how did you settle on this number?
Maddisen:  The initial idea of the book was it would represent “101 lessons” or an introductory course to this thing called life. As time progressed, I decided to keep and make 101 poems because it seemed like a reasonable number considering all my poems are about a page or less. 
Lily:  That's a great reason! I love the idea of a 101 course on life that turned into a way to process pain. Is there anything you hope readers take away from reading it?
Maddisen:  I hope that the people who read my work do three things. 1) Heal 2) Strengthen their ability to be empathic 3) (above all else) feel their emotions and learn to be kind to themselves and others in the process. 
Lily:  I think it would be hard to read this and not at least feel some emotion. Now we’d like to talk about you as a writer. When did you first realize your words have power?
Maddisen:  I realized my words have power when I made myself cry reading my work. My process is to write, let every idea flow out, then take a step back. Sometimes I will wait an hour to read my work, or sometimes it can be days or even weeks before I look at it. I cannot recall the exact piece I wrote that made me cry, but I remember the sadness that enveloped me and how I wish I could give that girl a hug. 
Lily:  That's definitely a powerful moment. Does writing leave you feeling energized or drained?
Maddisen: I tend to feel drained after writing. When I write, I prefer to put my entire being into my work. I would leave a piece of my soul if I could. I cannot stop when the ideas flow, so I end up pretty tired yet satisfied when I am done. 
Lily:  Reading your poetry, I think you may have left some of your heart and soul within those pages. Do you have a favorite time and/or place to write?
Maddisen:  As odd as it may sound, I love writing when I am extremely tired. It puts me in a vulnerable place to tune into my emotions while also leaving me the chance to write peacefully. I am very self-critical in general, and sometimes that hinders my writing process. But, when I write when I am tired, I simply do not care as much about mistakes or perfecting it. 
Lily:  I can understand having to try and find a way around that inner critic. Let’s finish up with some fun questions and get inside your mind. What’s your favorite dessert?
Maddisen:  I love ice cream with a burning passion. If I could, I’d eat ice cream everyday, at least once a day. 
Lily:  Ice cream is delicious, and there's so many flavor options! What’s one piece of advice you give other people but struggle to follow yourself?
Maddisen:  Do not worry about what other people think of you. I try not to be, but I definitely am a people pleaser more times than not. Especially when I was younger, I used to find my happiness in other people’s approval. Through some recent self reflection, I realized relying on others to find my happiness is like putting a bandage on a wound that needs stitches. It simply will not last and causes more damage in the long run. I am a fan of practicing what I preach, so I work very hard to not worry about what others think. 
Lily:  I think that's something a lot of us still struggle with. It's so easy to fall into making others happy and pushing our needs back. What combination of fixings makes your perfect burrito (or burrito bowl)?
Maddisen:  Pork carnitas, lettuce, avocado, salsa, refried beans, cheese, and sour cream. Chef kiss perfection. 
Lily:  That sounds amazing! Now I need a burrito... What’s your favorite month?
Maddisen:  October is my favorite month because of Halloween. Halloween is by far my favorite holiday. 
Lily:  Halloween is my favorite too. It's absolutely magical. Would you rather only wear one color each day or have to wear seven colors each day?
Maddisen:  I would rather wear one color each day than seven colors. My clothes are mainly black and red, so wearing one color would not be bad at all. 
Lily:  I went from wearing mostly blue and black to a lot of colors, so I think I'd have to wear a rainbow to get a full outfit. How can readers discover more about you and your work?
Maddisen:  I am in the process of creating a website. People can follow me on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook to find more information on it and other updates relating to my work. I also have a Goodreads author page.
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