Heidi Fettig Parton has a deep love of learning. In the nineties, she earned a BA (summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa) in English and her Juris Doctorate (with distinction and Order of the Coif), both from the University of North Dakota (graduating as Heidi Hellekson). Before a midlife career shift in 2009, brought on by the birth of her third child (and second marriage), Heidi spent 15 years careering, first as a lawyer, and then in legal academic publishing.
Focusing on her own writing was always something Heidi hoped to do someday; as it often happens, someday arrived sooner (and also more slowly) than she ever dared imagine. In 2014, Heidi returned to graduate school and, three years later, earned an MFA in Creative Nonfiction from Bay Path University, where she honed her writing craft and gained knowledge about the business side of literary publishing.
Heidi is now working on a memoir-in-essays about all that was lost (and found) along a path set and governed by external and internalized patriarchy. Heidi’s essays and poems can be found in many publications, including Agate Magazine, Angels Flight literary west, Brevity’s Nonfiction Blog, Entropy, Forge Literary Magazine, The Manifest-Station, Multiplicity Magazine, St. Paul Almanac, and The Rumpus.
These days, Heidi enjoys spending time with her older two children, both adults, and is relishing her role as “stage mom,” chauffeuring her non-binary, hearing challenged, theater tween to rehearsals and lessons. She feels like she hit the jackpot with her second career, and with her second husband, her strongest supporter and her codependent partner in their shared addiction: buying and selling houses … but this is the last time.
In her spare time, Heidi studies Irish mandolin and the Bodhrán at the Center for Irish Music. She also trained as an end-of-life doula and is honored to serve as a volunteer at Heartland Hospice. Heidi makes time for walking Minnesota’s many outdoor labyrinths and for hiking the abundance of state parks surrounding the Twin Cities metro. She believes it’s important to listen to trees, whispering their ancient wisdom.