Richard: How would you describe "The Pin Up Poet"?
Andrea: The back cover says it best: "This book contains the iconoclasts of the women trapped in my head. These women drink too much vodka, smoke to calm their nerves, and hide behind the armor of black clothing and lingerie. These women are at once lustful and neurotic, they burn cookies and they can’t sleep. They are both predators and victims, empowered by their choices to leave unhappy relationships, but lonely and haunted by the ghosts of old lovers. These revelations are paired with exquisite, highly stylized photographs, suggesting that a woman wearing garters has a wealth of memories, secrets and love affairs hidden under her veneer of glamour—and the juxtaposition of these two components is both beautiful and fascinating."
Richard: Are you proud of this achievement?
Andrea: Of course. I stand behind this book. I think it makes an important statement on the complex psychology of women...how we view ourselves versus how we are viewed by men. This book took two years to create, and several more months to design. I got to work with some amazing photographers who understood my vision, such as Chas Ray Krider, Viva Van Story, Shannon Brooke, James Graham, Ken Thurlbeck, Vlad Voloshin, and Nicholas Routzen.
Richard: What type of poetry do you prefer to write?
Andrea: I write first person, confessional, narrative free verse poetry. I cannot stand poetry that rhymes because it usually sounds cliché. You can see some of my poetry on www.andreagrant.com . Leonard Cohen is my favorite poet of all-time, and I am invariably influenced by his work because I started poring over his books in high school.
Richard: You have used many different artistic outlets do you have a favorite?
Andrea: I like to mix mediums in my work whenever possible. I like collaborating with other artists and photographers. Writing and collage are my quieter obsessions, which require solitude. I like to work on several projects simultaneously so that I don't get bored.
Richard: How did you end up creating "Andrea Grant's MINX"?
Andrea: I wanted to create an illustrated story, to take archetypical myths and turn them around so that they were distorted and yet familiar. Neil Gaiman's Sandman series inspired me when I began to work on Minx, along with David Mack's 'Circle of Blood', and of course, Leonard Cohen.
Richard: What is the "MINX" about?
Andrea: After she is attacked by a supernatural demon, Minx, a young Native American woman, wakes from a long coma and discovers that her destiny lies in Dreamtime: an alternate universe where mythical beings bide their time until they can seize power over the waking world. There's a lot of Native American and Greek mythology in this story.
Richard: How do you feel about being portrayed in a comic book?
Andrea: I decided to play my own character because artists always need a model anyway, and I thought it would be fun. But it's a bit strange when people expect me to act like Minx in my daily life. Maybe I channel that energy in a certain mood, but not when I am at the market.
Richard: Why did you decide to found Copious Amounts Press?
Andrea: Copious Amounts is a small press that I founded in Vancouver, Canada back in 2001 with the publication of the literary journal, Copious Magazine (www.copiousamounts.com). We are now located in the East Village in New York, and have produced 'The Pin-Up Poet', ‘Andrea Grant’s Minx’ and other multimedia print, audio, and video projects. I started my company because I wanted to keep control over my intellectual properties. I always felt I was a bit ahead of the curve. For example, when I started Minx, indie comics were a lot harder to find, and weren't considered as cool as they are now. The comic book movie blockbusters really sparked a frenzy in the community. I was also into the pin-up subculture before it infiltrated the mainstream consciousness. Unless people were in the rockabilly/psycho-billy scene, they didn't know what it was about.
Richard: What can we look forward to seeing in the future from Copious Amounts Press?
Andrea: You will see much more of Minx...I am working with a wonderful manager, and preparing to relaunch the series. 'The Pin-Up Poet' will continue to evolve as a brand. You can buy my new book via this link: http://www.lulu.com/content/paperback-book/the-pin-up-poet/6314284 , the first of the 'Grimm Recollections' art-poetry collaborations with Justin Hampton has just been released, which you can see here http://www.justinhampton.com/Red.html . I am also working on a project with Christian Beranek, and a young adult series about Native American shape shifters, along with a kid’s book.
Richard: What television and film projects are you working on now?
Andrea: I have to keep that all top secret for now! Projects have a way of mutating as they evolve, and I don't like to tease my audience until there are release dates.
Richard: When and if you have free time what do you spend it doing?
Andrea: I don't have much free time. I am a multi-taking workaholic who thrives on masterminding projects. I like to read, but instead of allowing myself to fully pause, I'll read while I'm on the cardio machine. I love to travel and spend time with my friends, who always inspire me. I go to a lot of events. By day, I am the Managing Editor of www.thefashionspot.com , which challenges my mind in a different way.
Richard: What goal would you like to achieve next?
Andrea: I would like to see more of my books published, and to achieve the next level of success. I hope to see Minx become a film in the next couple of years. I never want to stop creating things.
Richard: How can someone contact you?
Andrea: I make it a bit difficult because of all the spam-robots these days. If you want to get a hold of me, go to www.copiousamounts.com and fill in the contact form on the Minx site. Or send a message via www.facebook.com/andrea.grant .
Richard: Any final words of wisdom?
Andrea: Don't wait for opportunities to come to you - go out and create them. Surround yourself with positive, intelligent people who inspire you, and who tell you everything will be all right when you are at your lowest point. Because there will be low points. The formula for success is persistence, hard work, and talent. It takes 7 – 10 years to succeed, so don’t ever stop.