Dreamgirls: Alexandra Franzen


You know that girl who has stars for breakfast and conquers the world for lunch?  Yeah, that one, the one in the center of the room, who sparkles and shines and you can tell she is totally abaze? Well, that girl pales in comparison to Alexandra Franzen. I’m proud to present the first wonderwoman in my Dreamgirls series: –Drumroll– Ladies (and gents who reads this blog in silence), I give you ALEXANDRA FRANZEN!!

So, Alexandra, where did your dream to become a location-independent wordsmith come from? 
Well, here’s the thing … I never actually ‘dreamed’ of becoming a location-independent wordsmith. (So much for goal-setting, eh?). If anything, I dreamed of becoming an ichthyologist. Or a gourmet donut maker. Or a champion archer. What I did dream about — or rather, set a clear intention about — was how I wanted to feel, in my life & work. Which is … electric, sought-after, affluent, sensual, and free. As in freedom. Once I got crystalline about how I wanted to feel, during every moment of my day — waking up each morning, making my French Press coffee, booting up my laptop, connecting with clients, shutting down for the night — the ‘what’ in ‘what am I going to be when I grow up?’ percolated into place. With a lot of trial & error & terror & tears of gratitude & soul-shredding evolution along the way, of course.

How did you make the decision to just go for it?
Cubicles make me sad. Scratch that — miserable. I needed an escape chute. So I built one. With a lot of help from some very smart coaches, mentors & comrades. Quitting my 9-to-5 wasn’t so much a ‘decision’ as a mandatory action to prevent my spirit from getting snuffed out. It’s what I needed to do. Because weeping in the women’s restroom on your lunch break is the opposite of fun.

Side note: there is nothing (repeat: nothing) inherently bad or evil or oppressive about offices or cubes or ‘regular’ jobs. I know plenty of peeps who ROCK their 9-to-5s, and have little-to-no interest in carving out a full-time freelance business. It goes without saying — only you know what genuinely makes you happy.

Did you experience set-backs and obstacles – and how did you deal with them?
ZOMG! Obstacles? Always. I had crushing moments of financial panic, at the beginning of my freelance adventure. I had weeks of poorly-staggered deadlines, where I pulled all-nighters just to stay afloat. I had crunchy learning curves, especially around pricing & client boundaries. I had burn-out days, and flat-line days, and existential crisis days. I shifted & tweaked my service packages at least half a dozen times. I launched products, and retired them. I morphed, fast & furious.

Some hiccups were easy to smooth out. Others took candles & bubble baths & Enya playlists & focused meditation. I’ve learned my gut instincts are usually correct. Mixed feelings usually…aren’t. And I’ve got a shortlist of entrepreneurial comrades that I can ping with a quick ‘am I crazy, or is this a good move?’ email, when I’m floundering in the fog.

How do you feel about your lifestyle right now?
I feel blessed. Not in the cheesy Hallmark angel card kinda way. Like, legitimately sprinkled with lucky stardust. I can’t believe I get to write for a living, and help entrepreneurs tell their wicked-awesome stories and sell their wildly-cool products. I’m beyond grateful for my eclectic clients, who share their lives & visions & futures with me, so freely. I have the best support team of witty, zippy assistants. I’m making the right amount of money for the amount of travel, philanthropy & frivolous coffee beverages that I want to include in my life, right now. I feel the way I want to feel. Insert exuberant torrent of expletives here!

What is your next big dream?
I want to write more poetry. I want fascinating creatures to hire me to write non-business-related language — like their personal manifestos, obituaries, dating profiles & break-up scripts. I want to take a monthlong sabbatical every year. I want to go to my grandfather’s farm in Sweden, and pick wild strawberries. I want to deeply commit to a mantra-recitation practice. I want a new hobby. But mostly, I want a pandog. Like everyone else.
Oh, and … I want YOU (the big ‘you,’ the everyone ‘you’) to feel resonant and powerful and hugely appreciated. Just like a human oughta.


A promotional writer with a keen eye for words that woo, Alexandra Franzen helps righteous entrepreneurs break their own sound barriers, with whoa-nelly webcopy, sales page sorcery, and spooky-perfect ghostwriting. She’s been lauded as “Spock, but with a sense of humor. And better hair,” and was once pronounced “a unicorn, in human disguise.” Standout clients include fire-starter Danielle LaPorte, marketing megastar Marie Forleo, international playgirl Gala Darling, master intuitive Hiro Boga, and a vibrant bouquet of branding and marketing agencies, including Red Slice and d.trio.
When she’s not throwing neon-green lightning bolts during 1-on-1 VELOCITY sessions, you can find her Twittering away, sippin’ on cranberry kombucha and blogging up a storm



{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Rachel September 16, 2011 at 1:07 pm

LOVE Alexandra Franzen! Thank you for this fantasic interview, i lapped up every word and found it comforting to hear of the lessons that popped up along the road for Alex & how her focus has always been on seeking out a “feeling” rather than hinging her worth on specific goals. The woman is a genius! xx


Grace Quantock September 16, 2011 at 1:19 pm

Thank you for beginning my day with your beautiful words xx


Hanna September 16, 2011 at 2:05 pm

wow, this is such a nice and inspirational new feature! i can’t wait for the next one.


Annching September 20, 2011 at 7:49 am

Great interview! I love reading about people living out cool gigs – and Alexandra’s is kind of close to my own dream of being a location-independent wordsmith. Can’t wait for the next one!


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