Skip to main content

Interview with Allie Pleiter

Captain’s Log, Stardate 07.02.2007

Today I have an interview with chick lit author Allie Pleiter talking about her latest novel, The Perfect Blend.

Opening a Christian coffeehouse in Seattle—that was my dream. I wanted to call it Maggie Black's Higher Grounds.

So when banker William Grey III denied my loan, I was crushed. But then Mr. Grey (who's a tea drinker—figures!) explained that if I took his small-business course, the bank might reconsider my application. It would take the help of some of my fab coffee, but I was sure I could stay awake long enough to learn something. Besides, despite Grey's stuffy facade, his velvety British accent could make even financial analysis sound interesting.

Read an excerpt.


And now, here’s me and Allie!

How'd you come up with the idea for THE PERFECT BLEND?

I don’t know how I come up with any of my books. They show up in bits and pieces in a way I can’t really explain. BLEND started out with the concept of an “impossible dream”—one where the odds are so clearly against you. Like opening up a coffeehouse in a city already jam-packed with coffeehouses. That, and the fact that I was looking for an excuse to visit Seattle, coffee capital of the USA. I loved the idea of God planting a daunting idea in a risk-taker’s head, and her having to convince risk-averse people in order to make that idea happen. Will Grey is one of those characters that started out just as a banker, then grew into this wonderfully complex guy—and when he grew into a tea lover, (which of course made him British), then it all began to take on the fun quality of opposites attracting. Stir in my passion for good coffee, and you’ve got a book I had a grand time writing (or should I say brewing?).

What's your favorite scene from THE PERFECT BLEND?

Hands down, it’s the scene where Maggie explains and demonstrates the different types of coffee drinks to Will. That one made me laugh every time I worked on it, and I could see it so clearly in my head. Followed, as a close second, by Will’s tea rebuttal, which was a delightful research surprise. If I give away any more than that, I’ll ruin it—but I will tell you that lots of people have asked me about that tea scene, so it must be resonating with readers as well.

If Maggie were an ice cream flavor, what would she be and why? (And no cheating and saying coffee-flavored.)

But she EATS coffee ice cream in the book, so that’s not really cheating. Okay, I’ll play along here and come up with another flavor---I’d have to say butter pecan, because that feels artistic and vintage to me, and that’s one of Maggie’s characteristics. But she might also go for the textures of Rocky Road, too. She’s a complex gal. I’ll jump in here and put in a plug for my favorite flavor, Graeters Mint Chocolate Chip, found only at the astounding Graeter’s Ice Cream in Cincinnati Ohio. (They ship, you know…).

Do you drink coffee or tea, and what's your favorite way to take it?

I don’t just drink coffee, it’s a food group for me. I take my coffee VERY seriously and in large quantities. Daily coffee means a hazelnut blend with cream and sugar, drunk within minutes of my gaining consciousness. My “coffeebar” drink is the largest available size of Mocha Latte with skim milk (so I can load on the whip cream and not feel guilty). Readers might want to know that the whip cream trick in Chapter 14 really happened to me—so how could I not put something so delightful into a book! Now, aren’t you intrigued?

Curious readers want to know: What novel are you reading right now and how do you like it do far?

I just finished Isabelle Allende’s Zorro, because I’m working on a dual identity historical novel for my next book MASKED BY MOONLIGHT, coming out from Steeple Hill in June 2008. I loved Allende’s sense of the epic, and how human she made a figure familiar to all of us. She took a character we think we know all about and created a rich, authentic, and revealing backstory. She has a lyrical, lush narrative style I could never hope to duplicate.

You're off the hotseat! Any parting words?

“Go buy my book”—how’s that? Actually, I might broaden it out to “support your local author and your local bookseller” with a touch of “support your local coffeeseller, too!” God bless and thanks!

Camy here: Thanks, Allie!

Popular Posts

Year of the Dog serial novel, chapter 5

I’m posting a Humorous Christian Romantic Suspense serial novel here on my blog! Year of the Dog is a (second) prequel to my Warubozu Spa Chronicles series. Year of the Dog serial novel by Camy Tang Marisol Mutou, a professional dog trainer, is having a bad year. While renovating her new dog kenneling and training facility, she needs to move in with her disapproving family, who have always made her feel inadequate—according to them, a job requiring her to be covered in dog hair and slobber is an embarrassment to the family. She convinces her ex-boyfriend to take her dog for a few months … but discovers that his brother is the irate security expert whose car she accidentally rear-ended a few weeks earlier. Ashwin Keitou has enough problems. His aunt has just shown up on his doorstep, expecting to move in with him, and he can’t say no because he owes her everything—after his mother walked out on them, Aunt Nell took in Ashwin and his brother and raised them in a loving Christ

No Cold Bums toilet seat cover

Captain's Log, Stardate 08.22.2008 I actually wrote out my pattern! I was getting a lot of hits on my infamous toilet seat cover , and I wanted to make a new one with “improvements,” so I paid attention and wrote things down as I made the new one. This was originally based off the Potty Mouth toilet cover , but I altered it to fit over the seat instead of the lid. Yarn: any worsted weight yarn, about 120 yards (this is a really tight number, I used exactly 118 yards. My suggestion is to make sure you have about 130 yards.) I suggest using acrylic yarn because you’re going to be washing this often. Needle: I used US 8, but you can use whatever needle size is recommended by the yarn you’re using. Gauge: Not that important. Mine was 4 sts/1 inch in garter stitch. 6 buttons (I used some leftover shell buttons I had in my stash) tapestry needle Crochet hook (optional) Cover: Using a provisional cast on, cast on 12 stitches. Work in garter st until liner measures

Last day of the Clean Romance Sales Event

Today is the last day of the Clean Romance Sales Event. Lady Wynwood’s Spies, volume 1: Archer and Lady Wynwood’s Spies, volume 2: Berserker are both only 99 cents! There are lots of other clean/sweet or Christian romance books on sale from other authors, too, so be sure to check it out. Click here to get Lady Wynwood’s Spies, volume 1: Archer and Lady Wynwood’s Spies, volume 2: Berserker for only 99 cents each! Lady Wynwood’s Spies, volume 1: Archer Part one in a Christian Regency Romantic Adventure epic serial novel with a supernatural twist She met him again by shooting him. After four seasons and unmarried because she is taller than most of her dance partners, Miss Phoebe Sauber receives the shocking news that she is being callously banished from her father’s estate because he is remarrying. Feeling betrayed by her father and by God, and wanting to escape her family’s presence, she attends an archery tournament with her friends. But her perfect aim fails her, and