Alice in New Bern June 2It’s exciting when your new book is about to be published. Heroes without Capes will available for pre-orders for only a few more weeks. What that means is that you get a $6.50 discount off the book’s retail price of $14 and it will shipped to you as soon as it is published—which will be September (a whole month earlier that I thought!)

To pre-order my book, click HERE.


What’s my book about? It’s about the good and bad lessons we learn from our fathers, fear of completing our goals and the fear of not being good enough or taken seriously. It’s also about doing the right thing when no one is looking-and what does it cost us when we do the right thing. It’s also a book about the New South and how someone not from the South can find their way there through food and religion. Many of my poems are first-person point of view poems, often from the male perspective, but I’ve included many powerful women: Ellen Ripley of Aliens, the Virgin Mary, Princess Leia, Stumpy the Right Whale, Dina the Delta Jet…and yours truly. Yes, this book is very much about my hero’s journey too. I had a lot of fun writing these poems, especially the set-piece I constructed around Boba Fett’s journey from bounty hunter in the Star Wars universe to head hunter in Raleigh, North Carolina.


It’s been three years since I released a new poetry book—the last being After the Steaming Stops in 2012. I took my time with the new poems in this collection. After Steaming, and was kind of forced to write new poems since the ones in the book were all published, but not only that, I decided to take my poetry from a memoir base to a fiction base using the structure of Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s Journey.


I teach the Hero’s Journey in my memoir and fiction workshops. Starting with a death, the hero, who can be anyone, ventures from the known world to the unknown world. He or she is pursuing a goal and this goal can likely change before the hero gets what she wants. Along the journey the hero meets many obstacles, enemies, friends and a mentor. The hero experiences successes and then encounters a horrible failure, which I label the “Little Death,” that takes place right before the climax. After the hero survives the Little Death, surmounts the climax, she returns to the community and is now able to teach and mentor within that community so that everyone is able to heal and thrive.


Of course, while the writer is writing about the Hero’s Journey, they are also experiencing their own in-real Hero’s Journey. I know I did—many of my friends in my two writing groups, one live and one online, didn’t get the direction I was taking my poetry. They didn’t get my historical and pop culture references and were sometimes mad I kept writing about Star Wars and Finding Nemo. But I pressed on and later, for other reasons, the groups broke up. In 2013, I only had one poem published. At this time, I was somewhat uninspired when it came to poetry, so I decided to take violin, guitar and Irish dance lessons. That decision proved magical. With more creativity inflow, I continued writing my Hero’s Journey poems and then something cool starting happening: they were published by literary journals and anthologies. I could do this! When I stopped trying so hard, the poetry flowed from the right place.



Any of my heroes in this book could be you. Have you been forced to make an unpopular decision? Have you done the right thing when no one is looking? Have you broken through fear to embrace faith? I know you have, my friends.


Heroes without Capes may be about fictional characters from galaxies far, far away, but they share the same vulnerabilities, fears and hopes we do. Being a hero doesn’t mean you’re not scared; it means you push through the fear and do it anyway. Or do one scary thing every day.


Advanced Praise for Heroes without Capes


“Alice Osborn’s Heroes without Capes proves that anybody—even you—can be somebody’s hero. The quest is the thing, the struggle against daunting obstacles. Osborn catches her heroes in make-or-break situations from which there is no turning back. Good guys and bad, the characters range from historical figures like LBJ, Dick Chaney and Captain Bligh to sci-fi characters from Star Wars and Predator, and a few inanimate objects: an airplane and a house. In her fast-paced, well-crafted and boisterously entertaining narrative poems, Osborn manages to give all her heroes their distinct voices while never losing her own.”

—Richard Allen Taylor


“These poems by Alice Osborn—a number of them wonderfully hybrid and distinctive in form—draw a steady bead on heroes and the heroic and, within that malleable context, the anti-hero as well. Heroes without Capes deftly imagines a hierarchy where the fanciful as well as the mundane are rendered not only heroic, but mythic. The language is tough, sanguine, funny and, above all, memorable. This is a strong book of poems.”


— Joseph Bathanti


“In Heroes without Capes male voices of real or created personas are often packed with sardonic humor. For instance, Nolan, the split foyer in a home for sale says, ‘Just don’t call me white trash with new paint.’ These crystal voices sometimes echo like dirty old men nailed for their callow characters, such as boozer Boba Fett who finds religion, changes careers, and drinks only water. An amazing book—finely tuned, plumbed, and fun!”

—Sara Claytor


“Alice Osborn has a unique, pop culture-savvy, poetic voice. She’s also a GOTDAMN TRIP! I mean, there’s a poem in this book where the Predator goes to—WALMART! And, really, that’s all that needs to be said.”
—Craig D. Lindsey
“Ambitious and sweeping in scope, Heroes without Capes is a vibrant, wonderful contribution to the complicated topic of heroic identity. When all is said and done, Alice Osborn may be the greatest hero of them all.”

—Jason Mott


I’m slowly getting readings/signings for Heroes on my calendar—here’s what coming up this fall:


Wine Tasting for Alice Osborn’s new book of poetry, Heroes without Capes

Location:  The Book Bar, 10511 Shadowlawn Dr., Suite 115, Raleigh, NC 27615 in Falls River Town Center

Sunday, October 25, 2015    Time: 2-4pm
Enjoy a complimentary wine tasting as you get your copy of Alice’s new book of poetry signed at the Book Bar, a recently opened used bookstore that loves to feature local authors. Network, win doorprizes and hear Alice read and sing from her much-anticipated release, Heroes without Capes. From wildly popular chocolate-making parties to featuring palette-pleasing flavors, The Chocolate Boutique is a fun, unique and educational experience for any chocolate lover.



Monday Night Poetry & Music, featuring Alice Osborn in Charleston, SC

Location: East Bay Meeting House, 160 East Bay St. Charleston, SC

Monday, October 26, 2015    Time:  8-10 p.m.

Free and open to the public

Alice will read selections from her new book, Heroes without Capes, as well as sing and play guitar at Monday Night Poetry & Music, which is a weekly show of poetry and music with a feature starting the night followed by open mic. Hosted by Jim Lundy.



Alice Osborn Reads from Heroes without Capes at The Joyful Jewel

Location: The Joyful Jewel, 44-A Hillsboro Street, Pittsboro, NC 27312

Saturday, November 1, 2015    Time:  3-5 p.m.

Open to the Public

Featured author Alice Osborn from Raleigh, North Carolina, will read selections from her new book, Heroes without Capes, as well as sing and play guitar at The Joyful Jewel. The Joyful Jewel is a community of about 150 local artists and patrons. We offer jewelry, sculpture, paintings, pottery and more.