I am so excited to have a giveaway of my friend Courtney Walsh's book The Busy Scrapper.
The book was just released!
This is Courtney's second book. Her first book, Scrapbooking Your Faith, had beautiful layouts and amazing inspiration.
Courtney's new book is perfect for all of us that want to preserve our family's memories, but have a hard time finding the time. She has so many beautiful and easy layouts to follow. I love to scrapbook but the more behind I get….the more I don't want to do it.
To encourage your scrapbooking endeavors I would also like to include in the giveaway a HUGE supply of papers and embellishments from my collection.
Just leave a comment and you will be entered in the giveaway.
I have known Courtney since elementary school. It has been so much fun reconnecting with her within the past year. She is amazingly creative in so many areas. I hope you enjoy the Q&A. It was fun to learn even more about her and what inspires her.
Where do you find inspiration?
I find inspiration everywhere. Oh, I hate when people say that. The truth is, I find inspiration in the quiet moments. Late at night when I've just laid down to go to sleep. Walking through Barnes and Noble by myself on those rare occasions when I leave the house. Flipping through my favorite magazines…like the Pottery Barn catalogs and the now defunct Cottage Living. In the quiet, I can hear my brain… and while I live in chaos, I find the rare quiet moments motivate me the most.
How do you balance family and your career?
I am still figuring this one out. We are all such busy people–but especially women. We have much to juggle. And as soon as we get free time, we add something else to our plate. For me, it's about learning to say no. Learning that just because I CAN do something doesn't mean I SHOULD. So, I've had to clear my plate of a lot of things to focus on what's important. Then I carve out times for creativity within the day, usually during naptime, and I keep that time sacred.
Could you tell us a little about the new direction you are being lead?
Well, I feel like right now I'm in a bit of a transitional period–and I love it! I've recently given up most of my scrapbooking responsibilities so I can focus more on writing. I still have a couple of scrapbooking things I'm doing, but they aren't ongoing… instead, I am re-discovering the theatre, writing for the stage and learning a whole new craft of writing fiction. It's been quite a journey so far. I wonder what's around the next turn!
As a writer can you put into words how you felt when your first and now second book was published?
Well, I was pretty excited about that. My first book, Scrapbooking Your Faith was a labor of love. It was such a quick deadline, but the words really spilled out of me. That book is really what's on my heart. But seeing it in Barnes and Noble and seeing it on the front rack at Hobby Lobby and Michaels were big moments for me. (I never even got a picture of that! I need to do that!) But you have to understand by the time it actually gets released SO much time has passed from that first deadline that in a way, all that lag time almost sets you up for a little bit of deflation. You have moved on by then so you have to return to a project that is now 6-8 months old. It's an odd feeling, but definitely one where you thank God for giving you that crazy opportunity!
You have worked with some of the most amazing women in the scrapbooking industry. Is there anyone that has been a mentor to you? My dear friend Leah Fung. She is a contributing editor at Scrapbooks, Etc. but when I met her, she was just breaking into the scrapbooking world. I loved her pages and told her so and I was excited to find out she was coming to Chicago for the trade show the following summer. We met there and she was designing for Chatterbox, introduced me to all those girls and really helped me learn what I needed to do to get my pages published. She was definitely a mentor and very good friend to me. I love that girl!
Whose work are you inspired by in the scrapbooking industry? In the theatre? As a writer?
Hmmm… in the scrapbooking industry… I am most inspired by the new products that come out. Those designers are artists behind the scenes… especially seem drawn to Basic Grey, Chatterbox, October Afternoon and other lines that have a real homey type feel. I like homemade stuff!
In the theatre, right now, I'm totally inspired by the kids I'm teaching, but again, the material inspires me. I have dream shows I want to direct like Godspell and Little Shop of Horrors and The Music Man and working with those shows totally inspires me. I am also hugely inspired by Kristin Chenoweth who is a genius onstage and I will always love a good Oscar Wilde play!
As a writer… Jane Austen's stories grab and move me. Always. I study movies a lot to learn about good storytelling though I know there are so many differences in the crafts. Love the work of Susan Meissner…I'm reading her book The Shape of Mercy right now and loving it. Also love Deborah Raney whose books are ones I would read over and over again (which is incredible because I just don't do that… who has time!?) Ted Dekker, Angela Hunt and my all-time favorite Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers.