Carla Coulson talks Paris, memoir, and creativity

Carla Coulson talks Paris, memoir, and creativity

I am so honoured to be interviewed on writer Louisa Deasey’s blog, chatting about all things books.

Here’s a short preview of what we talked about:


This one is for the francophiles with a penchant for stunning imagery!

Photographer, creative coach and six-time published author Carla Coulson generously shared all she knows about memoir and creativity (and her favorite spots in Paris) with me, this week.

What was the most surprising aspect of writing that memoir?

As I was getting into the lift when I signed my book contract, my lovely editor asked me if I’d read A Thousand Days in Venice?

I said yes, and she just made a quick comment about the honesty of the author. No big speech or pep talk – she just left me with those words.

When I went back to Florence I it was cold, dark and wintry and I thought no-one would read the book anyway so I decided to be honest.

In my own little bubble I also felt disconnected to the idea that anyone would ever read it, so this freed me up to be honest.

There’s something very empowering about telling your story, and it’s helped me understand myself better. I poured my heart and soul into that book. 

You’ve now published six books (! which is amazing, by the way) – why is Italian Joy your favourite?

It was a simple book, but it marked such a joyous time in my life, being freed from a lifetime of how I thought I “should” live and finding this beautiful simple life that excited me, connected me to myself and others and led me to feel fulfilled.

When it was published, I heard from so many others that read the book and felt the same way, and Italian Joy connected them both to me and to themselves. This was one of the greatest gifts I received from this book, the connections it brought me.

What Italian Joy has shown me is that we are full of infinite possibilities. I picked up a camera at age 35 and became a photographer, I learned to write much later too, so now I believe with time and practice I can enjoy art, or music or some other creative outlet where as previously I told myself I wasn’t talented. I know we are ALL TALENTED and creativity is innate in all of us.

Can you give any tips to those embarking on their first memoir – from your experience of writing Italian Joy?

I had no intention of becoming a writer, but when the opportunity arose I was so deeply connected to wanting this new life as a photographer, I chose to take the leap and try. So I did a writing course that helped me get the words down on paper and I found a voice I never knew I had!

I discovered that I love writing and that I had A LOT to say, that each and everyone of us has a story, and that our story, no matter how insignificant it may feel, has the power to inspire others and change lives.

I will be forever grateful to have found a voice, and to Julie Gibbs for asking me to share my story.


You can read the rest of the interview on Louisa's blog HERE.

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