Saturday, January 21, 2012

Writers Workspace: Allie Plieter

The Pink Heart Society would like to say a huge welcome to Allie Plieter who writes for Harlequin Love Inspired.

An avid knitter, coffee junkie, and devoted chocoholic, Allie Pleiter writes both fiction and non-fiction.  The enthusiastic but slightly untidy mother of two, Allie spends her days writing books, buying yarn, and finding new ways to avoid housework.  Allie hails from Connecticut, moved to the midwest to attend Northwestern University, and currently lives outside Chicago, Illinois.  The “dare from a friend” to begin writing has produced two parenting books, fourteen novels, and various national speaking engagements on faith, women’s issues, and writing.  Visit her website at or her knitting blog at

Allie is here today to talk about her workspace.  Take it away Allie!

Where do I write? 
Everywhere.  Kitchen counter, couch, coffee shop, back deck, everywhere. I do have a messy desk,but it mostly just holds papers.

My favorite place is on a big comfy pillow, in front of the fire, with a cup of coffee and my dog.  It’s hard not to love a job you can do so comfortably in your pajamas.

Chad Owens, my hero in FALLING FOR THE FIREMAN, probably wouldn’t approve of my laid back approach.  He’s a fire marshall who used to go out on calls, but his current scars run so deep they keep him pinned to a boring desk. A very neat, very tidy desk (totally unlike mine). He’s so busy being dark and dreary that Jeannie Nelworth can’t believe the tender guy she discovers under all that grumpiness.  Don’t you just love--as one reader put it--”the hard shell heroes with soft centers?”

I love my dog, so I figured it’d be fun to put a dog in this story, too.  Plug is no standard issue firehouse Dalmatian.  He’s no cuddly pup, either.  He’s a big, fat, lazy, endearing hound who becomes a crucial ambassador for the firehouse.  Sure, he looks slow, but Plug manages to get both Jeannie and her troubled son Nicky firmly entangled in Chad’s life. 

Jeannie and Chad take a long time to figure out why they’re good for each other.  Like most great love stories, each can’t stand each other for all the reasons that make them a perfect match.  They get their happy ending, but not before a whole lot of healing takes place.  Healing is never easy--as a matter of fact, it’s usually a very messy business.  Add a sullen teenage boy to the mix, and both Jeannie and Chad have their hands full.

Does this unlikely family-to-be get their happy ending?  Well, what kind of romance author would I be if they didn’t?  Of course they do.  Just because I write in unconventional places doesn’t mean I don’t understand all good love stories must have their happy ending.

And, oh, by the way, did I mention that chocolate covered salted caramels are involved?  Because who could resist puppies and fireman and chocolate??

Falling for the Fireman
Harlequin Love Inspired February 2012
ISBN #978-0-373-87725-6
Back Cover Copy:
There's something achingly familiar about the look in fire marshal Chad Owens's eyes. Widowed mom Jeannie Nelworth knows firsthand what it is: loss, hurt and yes—bitterness. Ever since the fire that changed their lives, Jeannie's young son has borne that same look, pushing everyone away. So she's grateful when Chad tries to get through to the boy with the help of his trusty fire station dog.
But the man who's all about safety and prevention keeps himself protected—from loving and losing again. Seems as if Jeannie will have to add his kind, guarded heart to her rebuilding efforts.


  1. Hi Ally, it's great to see you here. I love the photo of your spot by the fire. What an inspired place to write! How on earth do you get it to yourself? Smiling at you writing with your dog beside you. I do the same. Gentle canine snores must help the creative process!

  2. You remind me of me. I love the line about thinking up reasons to avoid housework! But I bet you get yours done all the same. You wouldn't produce quality work if you were basically disorganized, I think!

  3. That fireside approach to writing looks so inviting, but I fear I'd just lie down and go to sleep!

  4. Annie, I get it to myself (well, the dog is often right beside me) because my kids are teenagers and I mostly write while everyone is at school or work. Maria, I'm so glad you recognize "untidy" isn't "unorganized." I know exactly what needs to get done each day--it's just that cleaning things or putting things away very rarely makes it onto that list :). Liz, I think the reason I don't snooze in front of the fire is that I write in the morning (hooray for gas fireplaces that light with a switch!) and I'm one of those people who write in short bursts rather than hours on end.

  5. I like your fireplace. Your book sounds very interesting as well. Dogs or any pet really get to me in a story.

  6. Kaelee- I love my fireplace, too. I have breakfast in front of it every morning. And I think you will really love how Plug plays such an important part in this story.