Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Aloha to Victoria Pinder and FAVORITE COFFEE, FAVORITE CRUSH

I've been chatting about the RT Booklovers Convention in May (link) ... but first I will be attending Barbara Vey's Reader Appreciation Luncheon in April (link).  One of roommates will be Victoria Pinder.  

Victoria Pinder grew up in Irish Catholic Boston then moved to Miami. Eventually, found that writing is her passion.  She always wrote stories to entertain herself. Her parents are practical minded people demanding a job, but when she sat down to see what she enjoyed doing, writing became obvious.  The Zoastra Affair, Chaperoning Paris, Borrowing the Doctor, and Electing Love, Mything the Throne and Favorite Coffee, Favorite Crush will be published in 2014.  Now she is represented by Dawn Dowdle of Blue Ridge Literary Agency.  Also she’s the Vice President for the Florida Romance Writers.  


Kim:  Miami - I grew up in the Gables! What is your favorite sight, sound, and smell of the Magic City?

Victoria:  My favorite sight recently was sitting by Biscayne Bay and seeing a pair of dolphins swimming. It was early morning, and it was so peaceful. My usual favorite sights though are the arts shows or the orchid shows that often happen on Sunset Place. It’s central to my far flung friends and we span from North Miami to Homestead (which for anyone not from here is like an hour and a half drive.) I’m not a huge South Beach girl. (I’m a writer which says a lot.) The orchid and art festivals are fun with a bunch of women to go to, and it’s so beautiful. The weather is perfect this time of year to be outside and enjoy.

Kim:  I commend you venturing down different paths to find your passion. I also thank you for teaching. What are you learning from your students? What are your students reading?

Victoria:  I’ll go backwards. I teach them AP US government, AP Macroeconomics and AP US history. So for me they should be doing that homework in the textbook. For the AP Lit students I see them with Oscar Wilde at the moment. For fun, my students all love the young adult dystopian stuff and surprisingly last year Stephen King. I’ve not seen Stephen King novels as popular since maybe I was a teenager, so it’s very strange. Now onto the biggest question. What do I learn from my students. Optimism and faith in humanity. As a criminal lawyer, I was losing faith that good people were out there. It was truly bad. When I quit, this huge change came over me, and I took care of myself again. I like my students. Now I do teach highly motivated, intensely driven students, so they also keep me on my game. I can’t be lazy. There is no time for that, so when I get home, there is no time to be a hypocrite. I expect work, so I should be writing. It’s motivating.

Kim:  My oldest loved AP US Government - he received a five on the test!   Who or what helped you along your path to publishing?

Victoria:  I am determined. I wrote an awful book that no one has seen or will see. At the time of course I thought it was great. So I hopped in my car and drove to RWA Nationals. That trip taught me a lot. That was five years ago. I also became a bit of a conference fan. I flew around the country to attend more conferences and learn. I met big and small authors. Last RWA, thanks to Barbara Vey, I had morning tea with Jayne Ann Krentz which was still the highlight. So I recommend conferences to anyone whose willing to sit and listen and learn. I still consider myself someone with a lot to learn, and I don’t intend to let that change. I also met every one of my publishers from volunteer work, so that helped a lot too.

Kim:  Tell us about FAVORITE COFFEE, FAVORITE CRUSH - what inspired it?

Victoria:  How funny that’s what you picked to read. I wrote the sequel to that mid year last year and I want to get that to the publisher soon. I’m in the midst of a rewrite right now that will help me like the book. I wanted to write books that are set in Miami. If they are set in Miami, then I had to include someone into plastic surgery, so Penny’s mom came first. A gold digger who wanted to break up marriages and flitted to whoever had the biggest wallet. So if she was to be a bad guy then the opposite had to be the good guy. Penny never wanted to be like her mother in any way, and then I asked myself who are her friends. Where did she go to school, and then I met Jay, Sandra, Eva, Michael and Eva. Jay turned out to be the hero, but I have to say Jay’s mother almost stole the book as the villain. I’m not sure where she came from. She just showed up.

Kim:  What's next for Victoria Pinder?

Victoria:  So I’m working on the sequels to finish off my series. The Collins Brothers are all different and fun. I loved my group of friends and I have that contract to get the Mything the Throne out. So I have to finish these. I’m also working on a series right now that’s two out of three books in various stages of being done and the third book is being outlined. This series brought me to my agent, who intends to sell the series. Once I’m done with that, I’ll start something else. I always have ideas to work on.

I am giving away a copy of FAVORITE COFFEE, FAVORITE CRUSH to one randomly selected commenter:

Penny moves back to Miami to start her a job with a list of things to accomplish.
1. Find a place to live.
2. Avoid her gold-digging mother.
3. Reconnect with old high school friends: her best friend Sandra, the dramatic Eva, the dark Michael, her half-brother Wyatt, and her former crush Jay.

Jay may have kept her firmly in the “friend zone”, but that didn’t stop her from wanting more. Her five friends have stood by her through some difficult times and she’ll need their help now to accomplish her first two goals.

As soon as Jay sees Penny, he puts his plan into motion. His investors need to see him with a stable woman, one who isn’t all flash and no brains; Penny fits the bill perfectly. There’s just one hitch—he wants more.

Their pretend date sets off a whirlwind of plots. From mothers who want to control their children’s lives to the loss of her exciting new job, Penny’s world turns upside down. She knows she can overcome all obstacles except one—she’s falling for Jay all over again. 

Book Trailer: link 
Amazon: link 
Barnes and Noble: link
Publisher: link

To enter the giveaway,

1.  What is your favorite coffee?  I prefer hot chocolate but I can appreciate hanging out at a coffee shop.

2.  Comments are open through Saturday, February 21, 10 pm in Baltimore.

3.  I'll post the winner on Sunday, February 22.


Kim in Baltimore
Aloha Spirit in Charm City

Victoria offers an excerpt from FAVORITE COFFEE, FAVORITE CRUSH:

Chapter One

Jay Marshall pressed his lips together as he held the phone. His hands curled into a ball then straightened. He stared out his bay windows overlooking the ocean. Another beautiful day on the beaches of South Florida, not that he cared. Sunshine never filled him with joy. The humidity outside suffocated the spirit, but somehow, with this deal, he’d break free.

“Yes, you’ll see I mean business, Mr. Danvers. My business plans are long term.”

Danvers sucked in his breath, as if he were doubting the sincerity of Jay’s words, then told Jay. “And I’ll meet your girlfriend. It’s always telling with people from Miami. Flashy women and cars do not make good investments on my end.”

Jay gritted his teeth and tugged at his free ear, but kept the phone on the other. Miami advertised plastic women on the highway as a special brand. Flashy came with the area code. Instead he nodded his head and told the potential investor, “I understand. See you next week.”

He hung up the phone and stared out the window. The brightness showed his reflection and his grim frown. Jay needed to win. His eyes squished together. He’d pay the price for success. He had no other choice.

Jay’s mind raced to his technical girlfriend. Eva was the epitome of flashy, beautiful, and fake. She’d been a friend since high school, and two months ago, they’d ended up dating. On paper the award winning dramatic actress, his money, and their history should be a match. Yet he couldn’t imagine his entire life videotaped.

If he walked away from her, there would be no regrets. His investors hoped he had a nice, sweet woman on the side. His cousin and her friend, Penelope, flashed in his head before he dropped the thought.

He pushed his hand on the glass window before he stepped back into the shadows of his office.

Darkness didn’t suit him either. Nothing stirred inside him anymore, though he craved something. Anything other than boredom from the sticky heat of his life.

He shook his head and poked his head out of his office. His secretary sat there typing. “Call Eva. Set up an appointment for us to talk today.”

With the click of the door knob he rolled up his sleeves. He needed the deal to put his goals in line with his investment portfolio.

His eyes narrowed in on the first words, long term growth.

Long term read to his eyes like a rescue rope. He blinked. Life should be lived with long term goals to reach. Freedom meant change.

Today, he’d break up with Eva. In his heart, he’d always hoped for a woman that tugged at his heart strings. But hopes didn’t earn freedom. He’d prove to himself, and the others, John Jay Marshall came out of the game of life on top. 



  1. My daughter can't start her day without her hot chocolate. A busy professional, she doesn't do coffee. I, on the other hand, love coffee. A dark blend with sugar and half & half is my everyday drink. If I am out at a coffee shop, I usually get a mocha cappuccino. I have tried some of the flavored coffees, but most are too sweet and not that appealing.
    Enjoyed the interview. Tried to go to Miami and South Beach a few years ago, but couldn't convince my husband to go. I wanted to look around and he didn't feel like dealing with the traffic.

  2. I do like a cappuccino. LOVE a good hot chocolate though.

  3. I don't really like coffee & never drink it. Instead I drink loads of tea. With the occassional hot chocolate, mmmmm what a treat that is :)

  4. I do not drink coffee. I love tea.

  5. Thank you for having me and our room is going to be fun in April. I hope the snow melts. I feel so bad for my family in Boston and so happy in Miami

  6. pretty much any latte from Starbucks and Scooters :) thanks for sharing!

  7. Black strong coffee... we buy from a local roaster.

  8. I don't care for coffee however I do like the smell of it. I'm a hot chocolate fan with lots of marshmallows :)

  9. I love coffee, I have had to go to decaf and a smooth blend though. I do enjoy a good hazlenut flavor every now and then. But I also enjoy tea.

  10. I don't like coffee either. I don't mind a cup of hot chocolate sometimes, but my overall drink of choice is.........................TEA.

  11. I like, strong black coffee and I grind my own beans - usually French blend but I will try almost any kind (except decaf or instant). The fancy drinks are great too occasionally - they're more like dessert to me.

  12. don't have a fav flavor

  13. Interesting title.

    I like both coffee and hot chocolate - esp homemade with real whipped cream.

  14. I like coffee shops but never have been a coffee drinker. I do enjoy hot chocolate.

  15. I usually drink tea but I do like to have a latte.

  16. I am not a coffee drinker, not do I really like chocolate. I love plain old Lipton tea.
    Karen T.