We had the good fortune of connecting with Matt Edwards and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Matt, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
I launched my podcast and brand, My Heroic Life, during the pandemic, but the idea came to me a year earlier when I was battling severe depression and anxiety. When I had first moved to LA, I initially struggled to find my footing in the acting industry, and I quickly became discouraged. One thing that kept me grounded during that time was listening to inspirational podcasts while I drove through LA traffic. When I listened to podcasts like “The School of Greatness,” or “The One You Feed” I felt inspired and encouraged to turn my life around. I wanted to find a sense of stability, peace, and independence.
A few years later, a close friend of mine opened up to me about his battle with mental health, and he shared that his favorite superhero show was the only thing he looked forward to during the week. He told me that these heroes inspired him to keep going, to keep fighting, to improve his mental health, and to be a better person.
I remember coming away from that conversation, realizing how important superheroes were to me too. With the recent success of the MCU, and a massive increase in superhero content, I realized how deeply we all connect to superheroes, and how these stories have a deep impact on our lives. Superheroes inspire us to be better people, to overcome challenges, and to find new ways to persevere. And those stories, ultimately, helped me overcome my depression.
I decided to combine my love of inspirational podcasting and superheroes, and my desire to help others improve their mental health, and that’s when the idea for my My Heroic Life was born!
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Something that I’m really proud of his how much I have diversified my skills as an artist over the past few years. When I moved out to Los Angeles initially, I thought of myself as an actor, and an actor only. I was reluctant to try anything else or learn new a skill, because I thought it might take away from my time or keep me grounded.
When I started my podcast during the pandemic, I couldn’t afford an editor, or a marketing team, and I had no idea where to start. I was overwhelmed, so I decided I would take one small step at a time and learn little by little. As I continued to improve with editing sound, I realized how similar it was to editing other media, like video. That ultimately led me to improving my editing skills with self tapes and demo reels for acting. The next thing I knew, I was buying my first mirrorless camera because I wanted to learn a little more about cinematography, and maybe shoot my own films.
All of these new skills I cultivated inevitably tied into my acting career, and they allowed me to improve and become more well rounded as an artist.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
There are a lot of fun things to do in LA, and I have several favorites. I originally lived in Westwood when I first moved to Los Angeles, and I fell in love with Diddy Riese, the cookie and ice cream shop. Whenever a friend visited from out of town, I made sure we made a stop there. Their prices are insanely cheap, and their ice cream sandwiches are heaven.
If you do visit Diddy Riese you’ll have to check out the historic Regency Village Theater, which is right around the corner, and one of my favorite places to catch a film.
I’m an avid hiker, and I love exploring all the trails of LA. The Sandstone Peak hike in Santa Monica is one of my favorites, along with the beautiful trails in Griffith Park and Eaton Canyon near Pasadena.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
There have been a few mentors along that way that have been so supportive. One person I do want to recognize is my professor, Traci Cartwright, who I had the pleasure of meeting in a masters level screenwriting course during the pandemic. At the time, I was just starting a new online program in creative writing, but it had been a few years since I had written consistently, and I didn’t have a lot of confidence.
My professor was so supportive, and I had so much success in my screenwriting course, that I reached out to her and expressed my desire to pursue an MFA in screenwriting. She was so kind and encouraging, and told me how much she enjoyed having me, and she encouraged me to look at programs outside of my degree so that I could transfer to a different program that focused on screenwriting. I took her advice, I applied to a new school, and she gave me a wonderful recommendation. I ended up receiving a scholarship, and I’m excited to say that I’ll be starting my new program this summer.
I wouldn’t have gotten to this point without her support and encouragement, and I’m very grateful.
Other: Podcast website: www.myheroiclife.com
Images 1, 2, and 4 by Dante Yore https://www.pic2kill.com/ Image 3: By Danae Brittan (ig @igotpicsbabe)