Local Author Spotlight: Alexandria Piette

I am a twenty-two-year-old self-published author and student. I am currently attending Grand Rapids Community College (GRCC) for Human Services/Pre-Social Work, but prior to beginning my college education, I wanted to bring my stories into the world, which introduced my project, The Blazing Heart of a Moonlight Arsonist.

The Blazing Heart of a Moonlight Arsonist is a coming-of-age tale set in the fictional town of Crossroads, MI. It follows Rickie “Blue” Hawthorne as she navigates family dynamics and coping with grief alongside finding hope in her friends, but most importantly, finding worth in herself. I will note that this novel is on the mature end of the spectrum of the YA genre, so I give content warnings when I can; Rickie navigates her loved one battling addiction and her newfound friends coping with the abuse of their father.

I began writing this debut novel when I was sixteen as a passive idea, but as I have grown, I wanted to bring my characters and this world I cultivated in my head to life on the page. At the time of its burgeoning, I was reading YA fiction; the genre helped me cope through my own mental health journey. Moreover, I think writing a narrative about grief is important. Grief is a lifelong impact on who we are and I wanted to show the severity in Rickie setting fires as her emotional outlet—but, at the same time, I wanted to show her recovery. Recovery is possible, no matter who you are or where you come from.

My advice does not sound like advice because I generally say, “Read and write.” If you have a passion for writing, the biggest fear can be that nobody will want to read your work, but I promise that someone out there in the universe is going to find meaningfulness in your words. Write for you and write for what you wish to see on bookstore and library shelves; someone will see that for what it is and fall in love with it.

I am currently shifting my focus and compiling a poetry collection! Poetry has become increasingly important to how I express who I am, rather than worlds I want to create. It has been a tremendous outlet for me in working through my own experiences.

Connect with Alexandria on Tiktok or Instagram @alexandriapiette or on Twitter @alexandriapiett.