About the Author
Carla Laureano is the RITA Award-winning author of contemporary inspirational romance and Celtic fantasy (as C.E. Laureano). A graduate of Pepperdine University, she worked as a sales and marketing executive for nearly a decade before leaving corporate life behind to write fiction full-time. She currently lives in Denver with her husband and two sons, where she writes during the day and cooks things at night.
1. If you were to go to brunch with one of the characters from Brunch in Bittersweet Cafe, who would it be and why?
I wouldn’t mind joining Rachel, Ana, and Melody at their usual weekend brunches, especially since I modeled the restaurants on some of my favorite spots in Denver. If I had to pick only one person, though, I think I’d sit down with Jessica, Justin’s older sister. She didn’t get a lot of page time, but I really like her. She’s kind, strong, and determined, and I know she would make a good friend.
2. What type of research did you do so you could write Brunch at Bittersweet Cafe?
I had the baking part down pretty well before I began, since I’ve been studying pastry with the help of some culinary school textbooks for a while. The aviation component was the most research-heavy—I had to figure out a reasonable backstory for Justin based on actual pilot qualifications, then learn the structure of a fractional aviation company, basic aeronautics, and how to actually fly the planes that he flew. It took a lot of reading FAA documents, watching YouTube videos, and scouring pilot forums to get enough background to write him in a convincing way.
3. What inspired the idea for Brunch at Bittersweet Cafe?
I never can give good answers to this question because I don’t fully understand how my creative process works. “It just came to me” doesn’t sound like a very good answer, but it’s the truth! Probably, it has something to do with my thought process when I’m developing characters and asking what are the best and worst things that could happen to them, but as I came up with this idea over four years ago, I honestly don’t remember!
4. What did you as an author take away from writing Brunch at Bittersweet Cafe?
One of the main themes in the book is faith, namely how we can think we have faith, but we’re really indulging in wishful or magical thinking. Faith is only true when it’s tested, and writing the book really made me think more deeply about what I believe and why.
5. What is your current WIP? What can you tell us about it?
For the first time in three years, I don’t have a work-in-progress! Book three in the Supper Club series is already complete, and I’m considering what I might like to write next. I’m grateful that my publisher built in a lot of lead time to these books, so I’m left with some time to relax, read, and consider. Most of my ideas come out of the spiritual matters I’m mulling in my own life, or even just newfound interests; without the time to explore new ideas, there would be no more books!
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