Archive | August 2014

What If

Sian Brett

Wallace (Daniel Radcliffe) is in a dead end job, living with his sister and her son, and his social life has all but evaporated. Life has taught him that love is only an excuse to do awful things, lessons learnt from his parents and a string of failed relationships. That is until he meets Chantry (Zoe Kazan), who seems to be perfect for him.. the only problem is her boyfriend. Wallace and Chantry decide to be friends, but as his best friend Allan (Adam Driver) and his girlfriend Dalia (Megan Park) ask throughout the film – “can men and women really be friends, or do you secretly wanna bang Chantry?”

Often when you watch a romantic comedy, the drive of the plot is the ever approaching realisation of both parties that they need to be together – just look at definitive rom-com When Harry Met Sally. This, as the romantic-comedy has…

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2014 Heart to Heart Contest–Deadline August 31

The 2014 Heart to Heart Contest, sponsored by the San Francisco Area Romance Writers of America, is now open for entries. This is a great opportunity to have your work seen by agents and editors along with valuable feedback on how to improve your manuscript!

About the Contest:

The SFA-RWA chapter is pleased to announce the Heart to Heart Contest for unpublished writers.
Enter–Submit that magical scene in which your hero and heroine meet for the first time.
Win–Published authors and experienced critiquer’s will provide detailed score sheets and feedback on ALL SUBMISSIONS.
Sell–Get your story in the hands of acquiring editors and agents.

The top three finalists in each category will have their entries read by an acquiring editor or agent. The winners will be announced by SFA-RWA, and certificates will be awarded to the top winner in each category.

Category Descriptions:

CONTEMPORARY–Novels set in the present.

EROTICA–Novels in which sensuality constitutes a strong element in the romance.

HISTORICAL– Novels featuring romance in time periods other than the present. Most editors consider as historical books set prior to WWI.

PARANORMAL–Novels that mix the elements of paranormal, time travel, futuristic or fantasy.

YOUNG ADULT–Novels with a strong romantic theme geared toward the younger adult reader. These novels may contain paranormal, time travel, futuristic, or fantasy elements.

Contest Timeline:

  • August 31, 2014–Deadline for submissions (electronic only)
  • October 5, 2014–First-Round Finalists Notification
  • November 6, 2014–Final Round Winners Announced

Final Judges:


  • Chelsey Emmelhainz, Harper Collins, Print Editor
  • Emmanuelle Morgen, Stonesong, E-Pub Editor
  • Jay Austin, EIC, Agent


  • Tera Kleinfelter, Samhain, E-Pub Editor


  • Nicole Fisher, Avon, Print Editor
  • Gwen Hayes, Entangled, E-Pub Editor
  • Kevan Lyon, Marsal Lyon Literary Agency, Agent


  • Leis Pederson, Berkeley, Print Editor
  • Kerri Buckley, Carina Press, E-Pub Editor
  • Tamar Rydzinski, Laura Dail Literary Agency, Agent

Young Adult

  • Natashya Wilson, HQN, Print Editor
  • Kimberly Blythe, Omnific Publishing, E-Pub Editor
  • Laurie McLean, Foreword Literary, Agent

For Eligibility, Entry Guidelines, Fees, Official Contest Rules and Entry Form, click here

Liza O’Connor and The Troublesome Apprentice

Book 1 Banner1

Book 1 Prize Banner2

XnV Troubled Apprentice 400 x 640

The Adventures of

Xavier & Vic

Book 1

The Troublesome Apprentice

By Liza O’Connor

Cases to be Resolved:

The Key to Aunt Maddy’s Death
The Missing Husband of Mrs. Wimple
The Disappearing Scarlet Nun
The Clever Butcher’s Wife
The Rescue of Lady Anne


While investigating the death of a friend and client, Maddy Hamilton, Xavier Thorn (reputed to be the greatest sleuth in England) is greatly impressed with Maddy’s nephew, Victor, and offers him a job as his secretary. Aware of Xavier’s history of firing secretaries, Victor garners a promise that for three months he cannot be fired. Vic then proceeds, in Xavier’s view, to be cheeky and impertinent at every turn. Xavier endures the impudent pup because Victor is most skilled in extracting the truth from clients and intuiting facts with little evidence to assist.

As they solve a string of cases, Xavier discovers a few more important details about his troublesome apprentice, such as her true gender, and the realization that she has awakened his long dormant heart.

An Excerpt

“Head out to the estate today. Make no notice or reference to the horses. I’ll send men to assist you in removing them,” Xavier advised.

“How will I know they are your men?”

He described the lead man. “Jacko’s appearance and manners will give you little confidence you’ll ever see the horses again, but I trust him more than most men.”

When Winston left the room, Xavier turned his intimidating stare upon Aaron. “You are lucky to have a man like Winston. You should rely on his instincts in this matter. He is not emotionally involved.”

“You think my feelings for Anne are impacting my judgment?”

Xavier answered without hesitation. “Yes, I am quite convinced of it.” He sighed and leaned back. “Anne Rothchild is clearly a beguiling woman. Her influence on the Earl of Carlington…and you…is clear proof of her seductive powers.”

“It is clear proof she is a woman deserving a life far better than the one she has endured!” Aaron snapped. “If you do not wish to assist me, Xavier, tell me. Otherwise, remain quiet about matters you cannot possibly understand.”

His remarked offended Xavier on several levels. “Do you think me devoid of all human emotions?”

“Let us not play games. You have emotions, and they are more than obvious when your secretary is in the room. I do not condemn your preference, nor do I insinuate it impedes your ability to think in a rational manner. I only request you offer me the same courtesy.”

Xavier laughed beneath his breath. “My dear friend…I hardly know what to say to such a declaration.”


The Troublesome Apprentice


About the author

Liza O’Connor was raised by feral cats, which explains a great deal, such as why she has no manners, is always getting in trouble, and doesn’t behave like a proper author and give you a proper bio.

She is highly unpredictable, both in real life and her stories, and presently is writing humorous romances. Please buy these books, because otherwise, she’ll become grumpy and write troubled novels instead. They will likely traumatize you.

Mostly humorous books by Liza:

  • Saving Casey – Old woman reincarnates into troubled teen’s body. (Half funny/half traumatizing)
  • Ghost LoverTwo British brothers fall in love with the same young woman. Ancestral ghost is called in to fix the situation. There’s a ghost cat too. (Humorous Contemporary Romance)
  • A Long Road to Love Series: (Humorous Contemporary odd Romance)
  • Worst Week Ever — Laugh out loud week of disasters of Epic proportions.
  • Oh Stupid Heart — The heart wants what it wants, even if it’s impossible.
  • Coming to Reason — There is a breaking point when even a saint comes to reason.
  • Climbing out of Hell — The reconstruction of a terrible man into a great one.

Social Networking



Investigate these sites:

Liza’s Blog and Website   Facebook   Twitter

Prior Tour Sites

Don’t Forget to enter to win one of the two $25 Amazon Gift Cards.

Enter Rafflecopter

2014 Beacon Contest–Deadline August 31

The Unpublished Beacon IS OPEN until August 31, 2014.


Contest runs August 1-31, 2014 and is limited to the first 125 entries received. The deadline will NOT be extended except in situations of man-made or natural disasters. Open to all authors of romantic fiction. Published authors are eligible to enter any category in which they have not been contracted and/or published in book length fiction (40,000 words and over) in the last 3 years.  (Self-published authors are considered published.) Finalists announced by October 15th. (All finalists will have an opportunity revise their entries before the final round.) Winners announced by December 15th. First place in each category receives a Beacon Lapel Pin. All finalists and winners receive a certificate, and of course – BRAGGING RIGHTS!


  • Category Length Romance Agent: Laurie McLean–Foreward Literary Agency Editor: Allison Lyons–Harlequin
  • Contemporary  Romance Agent:   Rebecca Strauss–De Fiore & Co. Literary Agency Editor:  Elizabeth Poteet–St. Martin’s Press
  • Erotic Romance Agent:  Courtney Miller-Callihan–Sandford J. Greenburger & Associates Editor:  Leis Pederson–Penguin Random House
  • Historical Romance Agent: Beth Miller–Writers House Literary Agency Editor: Madeleine Colavita–Grand Central Publishing
  • Inspirational Romance Agent: Melissa Jeglinski–The Knight Agency Editor: Shana Asaro–Harlequin Love Inspired
  • Paranormal/Fantasy/Futuristic Romance Agent: Marisa Corsiviero–Cosiverio LIterary Agency Editor: Candace Havens–Entangled Publishing
  • Romantic Elements Agent: Nalini Akolekar–Spencerhill Associates Editor: Char Chaffin–Soulmate Publishing
  • Romantic Suspense Agent: Andrea Somberg–Harvey Klinger Agency Editor: Chesley Emmelhainz–Harper Collins
  • Young Adult Romance Agent: Michelle Grajkowski–3Seas Literary Agency Editor: Rebecca Kilman–Razorbill/Penguin Group