PRT044 –

Does everyone love story as much as we do? To celebrate the launch of Jessica Sprague’s new book, Stories in Hand, we spend a whole show talking about story. This is a good one…

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The Panel


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Picks of the Week

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  • Sherrie M.

    Hi there – Can I still use the Debbie Hodge Building Pages discount or is that over? (PLEASE say yes!). I tried it and it didn’t work and just wondering if its no longer valid or if I’m just a spaz when trying to use it. Love you guys. Can’t wait to listen to this episode! Thanks, Sherrie

  • Terri Torrez

    Trying to catch up after a busy October but I had a few thoughts I wanted to share. In a couple early PRT episodes you discussed the demise of several paper magazines and the potential for moving this content online. I saw Ali’s post recently about her December Daily appearing in Scrapbooks Etc magazine and it got me thinking again about this subject.

    Since those last discussions, I let my last paper magazine subscription lapse and have gone to totally online content. But what I realized is that I’m not really getting my content from magazines or magazine-style sites but rather from Twitter and blogs by my favorite scrappers. I follow a couple dozen scrappers (both in and outside of the industry) on Twitter and that gives me my news. I subscribe to a number of scrapbooking blogs that provide my articles and design ideas. And because blogs tend to be fairly narrowly-tailored to the writer’s style and process, I can subscribe to just the ones that really inspire me. I even get my advertising in this format and I’m always up on the latest products that fit my style. And then of course there’s PRT to provide the really in-depth analysis on my favorite topics.

    With all this digital content I feel like I’m getting better information more quickly, more targeted to my likes and needs, and more portable (on my iPad) as well. At one time I subscribed to 5 different scrapbooking magazines, but this past year I haven’t been remotely tempted to buy a single issue. Just wanted to say thank-you to PRT and all your panelists that post such wonderful online content. And, for the record, most of the content that I get is currently free but I would happily pay to keep it coming.
    Thanks, Terri

  • Anonymous

    I also find that the most update info is on the web through blogs, forum discussions, etc. However, I still enjoy picking up a new scrapbooking magazine (so few to come by now!) so that I can sit and page through it for inspiration.

    Izzy: I have a pick for you and no it is NOT for iPhone or iPad (though I LOVE your picks for these!)! I got my subscription to this site after learning about the video that explained how to harvest stills from your video footage using QuickTime. Because I have a lot of video footage of the non-HD variety, the pics are quite small and the quality of the photos is not great, especially for scrapping. I recently learned about another program for getting stills from video that also has adjustments in it for noise reduction, color enhancement, etc. as well as being able to enlarge your photos up to 4X with quite good quality! Thought you would be interested in checking this one out. The program is called Moment and is by Topaz Labs (which also produces some great Photoshop plugins for enhancing your images).

  • The coupon for that class is expired, but we’re hoping to run it again
    because it’s been our biggest seller! So no — even if you are a spaz, it’s
    not your spazziness that is keeping you from getting the discount, lol. It’s
    expired. Keep an eye out for when we run that class again! :)

  • You said it exactly as I feel! I haven’t seen a magazine issue forever, and I’m getting all of my needs met through twitter and non-magazine blogs. I agree — it’s more targeted, more what I’m looking for.

    Another thing that has always bothered me about magazines is that they have space issues, so they never go into the detail that you often need to be able to learn a fairly involved technique. When real people online are sharing, we don’t have to worry about limiting instruction to 3 steps, just one phrase per step. So we can really explain how it works. I find I trust regular bloggers more than the magazines.

  • Barbara

    OK, I’m pausing the show and writing down the story of my first car: like Noell, I had a rockin’ Pinto, a station wagon, white with those super-realistic (sarcasm intended) sticky paper wood-grained sides. I was the envy of my friends, I’m telling you. (see above!)

  • Yay for pinto’s!


  • Rosa

    I haven’t finished listening to the episode, but I wanted to comment before I forget…as many scrapbookers, one of my goals is to be a better story teller, as many scrapbookers, I struggle to find the right words but I try, and as many scrapbookers, I believe in the power of photography! so I wanted to share 2 ideas to use only photography as storytelling
    1) Liz Lamoeaux (in who I find a lot of inspiration, not directly related to scrapbooking, but to tell my story and to be true to myself) conducted a 9 question interview to several creative people and they answer each question with just 1 or 2 pictures, I loved the idea and I think it can be a starting point for a mini album
    check it out here
    2) Paula Gilarde (from used overlays and pictures to tell a story about now

  • Keisha

    Hey guys,
    I just finished this episode, and I felt like I should comment because your episode inspired me. I have a great story about my first (and still current) car. I keep saving my story because 1. I haven’t taken a picture of my car because it’s too messy or too muddy or I just don’t have time, etc. etc. and 2. it is such a great story I feel like I should have time to devote to make it great. Well tomorrow (as it is now 11:15 pm) I am going to go out and take a picture of my car and write down my story. What am I waiting for? For me to ruin my car or trade it in and then never have a picture to tell the story? It really does sound foolish when I think about it. So thank you for giving me a little shove here! I just need to put the pen to paper and write, take a picture, and presto – instant scrapbook layout/wonderful story. Thanks guys!

    And in case your wondering, here is the short version of my story. When I was a senior in high school, my parents took me to a car dealership to get “some parts for their car”. When we got there I said I wasn’t getting out because I didn’t want to fall in love with some car (haha). They made me, and as we were going in I see this gray 2003 Mitsubishi Eclipse, stick shift, second hand with barely any miles, and I said how nice that car was, basically my dream car. It turned out that my parents had gone to the dealership before, saw it, and bought it. I can’t even describe the feeling I got when they told me it was mine. There was some instant crying for sure. I still have the car and will run it to the ground. I still love it!

    So I guess that wasn’t short, but with a little alteration I think it will basically be my journaling. Wow, that was easy!! :)


  • Lori

    As always, LOVED the episode. Great information and guests!!! I especially enjoyed the discussion regarding printer color settings, but I am wondering if anyone has any advice (I am a digi scrapper) on how to get the photos and the digi papers/elements to all look good/true, color-wise. It seems as if certain settings produce great results on the photos, but then the digi elements seem “off” or “muddy.” Is there a universal color-setting change that can be made so it is more likely that the entire page will print as it is seen on the monitor? Help!

  • Emily

    Great episode! The car stories were really fun to hear and reminded me of my own crazy story. Oddly enough, like Ana, my first car was a Honda Del Sol aka “Del”. He was an awesome car. 1 week after I got him, I was hit by a moose!! If I had seen it and timed it right, I could have driven underneath it, but alas it hit me, fell on the car shattering the windshield and then it ran off. Myself and my passenger were thankfully unharmed. It was less than a mile from my house so I walked to the gas station pay phone (there were no cell phones in those days) and called my dad and the police. The police officer was a total jerk and did not believe me. He said are you sure it was a moose.. and my friend goes.. No sir, it was a raccoon! Somewhere there are pictures that we took for the insurance company. I now want to go find those. After $3K repairs Del was back to new and we had a long life together. I could do a fun mini book about our adventures. Thanks for the idea.

  • I really loved looking through Liz Lamoreux’s Nine posts. Thank you for
    sharing that! I’d like to put something like that together for my blog or a
    mini-book. Maybe both? ;)

  • Steph H.

    I always enjoy hearing about other people’s process for telling stories, writing, etc. I have found that everyone has a different process that works best for them and I often pick up little tidbits or advice by listening to them explain how they go about it. I don’t normally have a tough time writing about things I am passionate about, or when I really want to communicate something I feel needs to be known. But, there are certainly times when I get writer’s block or blank-page syndrome. As a columnist there are times when I have to meet a deadline and I feel like “I got nothing!” At those times I simply start writing with just the basics, in outline form. Then, once I have the basics down, I step away. The next day I read what I have written and finesse the wording. I have come up with some of my favorite columns using this method and thought it might be helpful for others to learn about. I believe that most of us have a tendency to want what we write to be perfect, and that often stops us dead in our tracks. If we can simply let go and let the words flow, we can often find our rhythm and produce something we are happy to share.

    When working on gathering our family members’ stories, we found that many were hesitant. But, by simply asking them questions (offering prompts), we were able to solicit wonderfully candid responses and soon found ourselves accompanying the interviewee on a wonderful trip down memory lane, often ducking in and out of side streets they might never have ventured down had we not given them a gently nudge in that direction. Many of those stories would never have been communicated, disappearing from this world when the interviewee did, never to be enjoyed by their future ancestors.

    One tip I’ll share for “finding one’s voice” when writing is to think about your storytelling in much the way I recommend my business clients create marketing verbiage: who’s your customer (audience)? why do they care about what you have to share, what’s in it for them? If you can write to them and offer the information they would find interesting and/or important, you have accomplished so much. As an example, if you are writing to your teenager about the challenges they’re facing, you’ll likely find that they are more open to “hearing” you if you can offer information (maybe even suggestions – gasp!) through stories about your teen years – help them to see you as a once-awkward teen and they’ll likely find it easier to relate to you.

    I always enjoy the roundtable discussions, picking up at least one or two ideas during every episode. Thanks!

  • Mande

    This book (Stories in Hand) looks gorgeous and I’ll be putting it on my Xmas list IF I can wait that long.

    I found Cathy’s Zielske’s class Me: The Abridged Version to be really inspiring to bring out a lot of my stories that were waiting in the woodwork. I hadn’t told them before because I had no place for them and the more I wrote, the more came out. Stories about my university days, my elementary school, the dogs we had growing up, etc, found a place in this book. In a few years, I would like to do it again, and I’m sure I will find plenty to write about then too.

    I want to add here that for my high school classes, we finally found a way to combine journaling with memory-keeping or self-introduction. Just in the last year, one of our teachers started a project with the students where they have to do one page a week and it has to include a certain amount of journaling. Each week, the teacher gives them a theme like “family”, “friends”, “hobbies”, “school life”, and so on. Next year, I will be teaching the same class, but we decided to try the Me:TAV method and go with letters of the alphabet. It will be slightly more challenging and the students will be expected to really fill up that journaling space, but we are all excited to see what they make!

  • Anonymous

    I don’t remember what kind of car it was — just that it was red and it had no cupholders — those continue to be the things I look at in cars :-p

  • Lynnette Erlandson

    Hi Roundtable Panelists

    Like many leaving comments, I love, love, love all the Podcasts Izzy Video produces (PRT, PDS & Foolish Adventure and videos, Paperclipping- I am a subscriber too!!). I listen to them over and over again, in the car, at work, cleaning the house, making dinner, at the gym, etc. – you seem to be my constant companion! Each and every time I listen to them I seem to pick up some other tip or trick or witty comment I missed before! Its like I can be scrapbooking when I really can’t physically be devoting time to my favorite hobby. I feel that you are helping all of us to open our minds to various products, philosophies, projects, methods related to scrapbooking that we might not of explored otherwise and most of all for reminding us that there is no right or wrong way to practice our craft! I also celebrate that you are creating a wonderful network of support within Scrapbooking, example – various places to take classes (BPC, Jessica Sprague, Debbie Hodge, Renee Pearson, etc), inspiration, news sources (Northridge Media, Ella Publishing, Ali, Scrapbook Update, etc), this is exactly what this industry needs and what scrapbookers need – no one site or service can meet all scrapbookers needs and it is so refreshing to see all of you supporting each other and supporting the craft (NO US and THEM). I loved the Halloween Episode and the recent PDS episode on Christmas and my request is that PRT also do a Christmas Podcast to give us all great ideas for decorating and gift giving – so many talented panel members with different personalities; I am sure there are some stories in hand that can be shared around the holidays. I’d like some ideas to decorate, gift and enjoy the holiday season that would stop traffic! Hope you can make my Christmas Wish come True, Hey can you also get me a ipod with more GB, I’ve filled my current one up with Podcasts! Keep up the great work!

  • I had to laugh when Noelle said “and now we have all our listeners thinking about their first car.” My first car was one of the first things I scrapped – back in the ’90’s – a lovely red ’71 Vega I named Ralph. I’ve since scrapped my most recent car too.

    I really like the concept of the story and finding things to detail the story that are not necessarily photos of the story. Sometimes we need to look at the story as the main thing and the photos are the embellishments of the story. I have so many childhood stories and family stories to tell that the photos I have may not “go” specifically with the story, but they do enhance it. It’s the memory I’m trying to keep after all.

    Like Mande, after doing Cathy Zielske’s Me: The Abridged Version class at BPC, I found finding things on the web to use that added to the story. Our lives ARE stories, not just pictures.

  • Hokiecoyote

    I’m now addicted to Radiolab podcasts. Great pick of the week.

  • Lee-Ellen

    I love the show! I have 2 questions. The first is- how should I submit questions on a topic that isn’t related to a recent show? I can’t find a link to email questions – so I’m just going to put my question here. But it doesn’t feel like the right place!
    My second (and main) question is about the mini-book Noell did for Halloween. I love the look of the album and would like to do something like that for Christmas. I’m new to mini-books – I see that the Teresa Collins kit that Noell used has the 2 chipboard covers and papers. What did you use for the pages inside? I would think you need something heavier than just paper. But I don’t know if I should look for chipboard pages or if cardstock is heavy enough.

  • Yes! I have now completed my mission in life! LOL – isn’t it an amazing show?!

  • This is exactly where I want to see questions, even if they’re unrelated to the episode topic. It’s easiest for me this way. So good job on that! :)

    For the Teresa Collins book, I just used the paper, two pieces back to back. I do that a lot. You’re right that it’s less sturdy.

    If you want thicker pages you can cut cardstock to the size you want and then adhere your pattern paper to one side, crop it to fit cardstock, then adhere paper to the back side.

  • Sherrie M.

    Does anyone know if Jessica’s new Stories In Hand has different content (or more) than the class materials in the free online class she did last year? Thanks!

  • Sweetpea

    Just wanted to say thanks for the comment about not saving your story for a ‘better’ time. I’ve done this several times thinking, i’ll write that down when I get in, and then I forget and writing it from the perspective of a later time means the journalling hasn’t got the ‘this is what i felt like when…’ kind of feel to it. Or just writing about stuff when you think about it, even if the subject is from a previous time. I suppose I am just saying it’s good to just write about stuff when you feel like it – not only is it good practice for writers, if that’s an interest for you (it is for me and I know it is for Noelle too) but it’s good to write when it’s on your mind just to get the words out. you can always go back and tweak, twiddle and change later but getting the words down in the first place is the most important step.

    Great show, as always!

  • Yeah, that’s a great point! You can dump it out quickly now while you
    remember it, but then fix and make it nice when you have more time. :)

  • What a great episode! I was inspired to write about it. Enjoy….

  • Great post! I just tweeted it out with a link! Thanks for sharing your