Posts Tagged ‘scrapbooking novel’

Scrapbooking Novel: Interview with Laura Childs, author of “Gilt Trip”

As I posted HERE, Laura Childs has a new book out called Gilt Trip (A Scrapbooking Mystery).

I had a contest to win a free copy of the new book. To enter, I asked you to post a question you’d have for the author and, boy, did you guys come through! So many great questions. {The book winner was posted HERE}. I submitted them all to Ms. Childs but honestly expected her to choose just a portion of them to answer. Well, she’s one generous lady because she answered them all!

And here you go: An interview *BY YOU* of Ms. Laura Childs, author of many scrapbooking and other novels:

Q: Do you try all the different projects that your main character does, or does someone tell you about them?

A: I try most of the projects, particularly ones that are a little complicated, just to make sure they’re doable. On some of the simpler projects that get repeated and repurposed – such as memory boxes, pillow boxes, cards, etc. – I already know they’re easy to do so there’s not much experimentation on my part.

Q: Had no idea there were scrapbooking novels out there. I’d love to know how you thought about starting a series of books involving scrapbookers.

A: After my first Tea Shop Mysteries were successful, I decided I wanted to write a crafting series, too. This was about ten years ago and scrapbooking was suddenly the hottest thing going. I talked to scrappers, worked on a few pages myself, and did lots of research. Boom – I discovered that I loved the craft and saw that there was a huge number of scrappers who might enjoy the books. The rest is history.

Q: I love your scrapbook series as I’ve read a few so far. I would like to know what you like to scrap about?

A: I mostly scrap about travel and dogs. I’m lucky that my husband is a professor of Chinese and Japanese art history, so we travel to Asia quite frequently. And the dogs (Chinese Shar-Pei) are an endless source of cuteness!

Q: Since you are a writer, is there a lot of journaling in your scrapbooks – or do you just let the photos tell the story?

A: I’m right in the middle. I’m a big believer in fun captions. Yes, a photo tells a story, but you can always use a kicker to punch things up!

Q: Have you ever lived in New Orleans? And how do you determine what scrapbook project the ladies will work on in the book?

A: I’ve never lived in New Orleans, but I’ve visited many times and have friends who’ve taken my husband and I to the float dens, parades, and Rex Ball. As far as determining what project my ladies will work on, sometimes that depends on timing (if it’s Mardi Gras it must be masks!). Usually I try to include projects that I think are new and exciting or very eye-catching.

Q: How did you get started writing mysteries around scrapbooking? And what’s your favorite type of scrapbooking – digital, hybrid, all-paper? Do you go to crops?

A: Like I mentioned earlier, scrapbooking just caught my eye when the whole phenomena started to explode. And I am clearly an all-paper scrapper. I love collages and mixed media in particular. I don’t go to many crops anymore – between writing three different series there’s just not much time.

Q: Do you have to research details of crimes or is it something that comes naturally for you?

A: You know, a lot of my crimes are really based on ripped-from-the-headlines stories. And I think the most interesting crimes are the ones that are slightly upscale and timely – like art thefts, jewel heists, real estate scams, stock market ponzi schemes. Well, you get the idea!

Q: I have only read two of your books, but love them. Something comfortable about reading about our favorite hobby. I would love to know if you have time to scrap and if there is a certain type of page you enjoy creating.

A: I don’t have a lot of time to scrap anymore between the three different mystery series. But when I do scrap, I like to do very artsy, almost contemporary looking pages. Either lots of white space with unusual typography or photos that have been in some way enhanced or embellished (think wild streaks of paint or aging with tea).

Q: I love the books series and am awaiting the 11th book! Will Carmela’s BFA Ava Gruiex ever find a steady beau?

A: I really don’t know. I try to keep all my plots a little loosey-goosey when I write, so the story can sort of unfold in a fun, exciting way. Sometimes I’m typing along and a character will just pop in without prior notice, or the story will take a wild twist. That the fun of writing! So I guess we’ll just have to wait and see what happens with Ava.

Q: I love Laura Childs and have been reading her books since the first one came out. She always writes about new and interesting techniques. I would love to know what her “can’t do without” scrapbooking item is?

A: Hmm, that would have to be my set of acrylic paints. There’s nothing like painting your own page background or doctoring up a photo to make a scrapbook page memorable.

Q: I’d love to know if Laura gets time to scrapbook since this book series took off.

A: Not too much time, unfortunately. But lately I’ve been stealing time away from my writing to work on altered books. So much fun!

Q: Gilt Trip sounds like a great read! I would like to know if Laura considers cooking another creative outlet?

A: Absolutely, I do! In fact my two other series, the Tea Shop Mysteries and the Cackleberry Club Mysteries, are culinary mysteries with plenty of recipes!

Q: I would like to know how Laura finds the time to scrap, research, and write such wonderful stories? What is her secret to finding this balance in her life?

A: Oh my, the fact of the matter is I haven’t found balance in my life. I’m always under the gun, always trying to write another few pages or edit a manuscript or rush off to a book signing. I write 6 days a week and wake up at night with ideas that I’m compelled to write down. I wish I could figure out a better balance, but then I’d have to give up one of my three series. And they’re dear to me, like children – awful to let one go!

Oh Em Gee, wasn’t that a fun read!?!?! I just love her. What a neat lady. I’m so happy she continues to write about scrapbooking for all of us to enjoy. It makes me feel like we scrapbookers are important and not forgotten, kwim?

I have to admit, I haven’t read “GILT TRIP” yet {and I feel so “gilt-y”, bwahahaha} because I’ve been busy reading business e-books and websites {I’m starting a new venture as a Virtual Assistant / Blog Helper!}. But reading this interview has made me grab my copy of the novel and commence to reading! I’ll give my review when I’m done :)

Would love to hear what you think of “Gilt Trip” as well – please leave your review in Comments below!

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Guest Blogger: Joanna Campbell Slan

Remember back in April when I told you about THIS. Well, it’s finally my lucky turn to host Miss Slan, as she gets word out on her new book.
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What Is a Scrapbooking Mystery?
By Joanna Campbell Slan

If you love scrapbooking and papercrafting and if you enjoy a good book, you’ll probably like Paper, Scissors, Death: A Kiki Lowenstein Scrap-N-Craft Mystery. It’s my newest book and it’s a scrapbooking mystery, although you don’t have to be a scrapbooker to enjoy it.

Paper, Scissors, Death tells the story of mousy housewife Kiki Lowenstein. She has two great loves in her life: scrapbooking and her eleven-year-old daughter Anya. When her husband George turns up dead in a hotel room, Kiki refuses to accept his death was an accident. To make ends meet, Kiki must get a job at Time in a Bottle, St. Louis’s premier scrapbook store. She figures it’s the perfect place to snoop around. After all, she’s a mom, and moms are invisible, right? Kiki vows to track down her husband’s killer—and along the way, she uncovers George’s sordid secret life. Worse yet, the murderer is wise to Kiki. Finding out who caused George’s death might cost Kiki her daughter and her life.

Sprinkled throughout the book are scrapbooking tips. Since I’ve been scrapbooking since 1998, I trotted out many of my best ideas!

As a special bonus, at the end of the book there’s a coupon for 50 free digital prints from Snapfish. And if you buy it from Amazon, it’s a super bargain. Okay, 50 prints at 30¢ each is $15, and Amazon has priced the book at $10.17, so you can put that extra savings into…MORE PAPER!

Remember those Calgon commercials? “Calgon, take me away?” Books have always been more effective than bubble baths for me. Each day as I sat down to write about Kiki, I forgot about all my own troubles. My dog, Rafferty, would tug on my sleeve around 5 o’clock to tell me it was quitting time.

I hope Paper, Scissors, Death does the same for you! To order your copy, go HERE. To read a preview of the book, with recipes and a “how to” for making a small album, go to http://www.joannaslan.com.

Now tell me. What do you do to “get away”? Do bubble baths work for you?
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Okay, I’m back. I hope you enjoyed Joanna’s article; I sure did. To answer her question, for me it’s:
~ bubble baths with an icy cold glass of white wine on the rim of the tub
~ scrapbooking in an empty house with no laundry pending
~ sneaking off to the movies by myself or with a good friend…can you say Chick Flick??

I would really appreciate any comments you would leave for her ON THIS POST. If you do, you will be entered in a drawing for a FREE copy of her book. DEADLINE TO ENTER IS SEPTEMBER 15, 2008 AT MIDNIGHT PST. If you don’t want to take any chances, just go order it now!

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‘Death Swatch’ by Laura Childs

Another scrapbooking mystery novel by Laura Childs is on it’s way! It’s due out September 2, 2008. I can’t wait! I love her books. If you haven’t already read them, Laura has a series of books where the main character is a scrapbook store owner in New Orleans. She always gets involved in some kind of whodunit and it’s always crazy fun. HERE is the link to the Laura Childs website if you’d like more info on her books. Definitely a quick, fun read!

I’ll leave you with a synopsis of Death Swatch and the teaser for her next book, Tragic Magic (both excerpts were copied over from the Laura Childs website):

DEATH SWATCH

Amid zydeco rhythms and popping champagne corks, scrapbook shop owner Carmela Bertrand and her friend Ava are partying in the French Quarter. It’s Mardi Gras, and they never imagined this might be the scene of a murder, but as the evening progresses, float designer Archie Baudier is found dead on the balcony–strangled with a barbed wire garrote. The only thing wilder than this crime are the theories about who did it–from a ritualistic slaying to a mob hit to the outlandish work of a rival Mardi Gras float builder. As Carmela flirts with handsome detective Edgar Babcock, she also ponders the odd clues; gold paint on the victim’s shoes, a ransacked apartment, and a glimmering gold doubloon.

TRAGIC MAGIC
Coming in Fall 2009

Design-wise Carmela Bertrand of Memory Mine scrapbook store is tapped to create spooky set decorations for Medusa Manor, a new haunted house attraction in New Orleans. But a flaming body hurled from the third-floor tower might just put a damper on the project.

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