Meet Richard Prentiss—Royal Attorney, Best Friend, and Confidante

facebook twitter

By Heather Long, author of SOME LIKE IT DEADLY

No one ever said being a prince’s best friend was easy and you’d never hear Richard Prentiss admit to anything of the kind. He’s known Armand since their first year in college and, while he didn’t know about his wealthy or privileged background right away, nothing between the two friends changed once he found out.

To be perfectly honest, one of the best parts of the Going Royal series for me is the friendship between Richard and Armand. I love these guys so much.

For Armand, Richard is the voice of reason. He’s the guy who will call him on his crap and he doesn’t stand on ceremony. It helps that Richard is a killer attorney who can run block passes against the press and corporate raiders alike.

For Richard, Armand is the guy who’s never judged him or asked him to be anything more than a friend. They play racquetball together, they are extremely competitive and they synchronize perfectly when it comes to business—cool-headed and ruthless, the pair of them.

Armand is a control freak and Richard isn’t much better. The only time they truly clash is over Richard’s personal security. Armand wants him to have more, Richard wants far less. So, what is a best friend to do?

Well, hiring a personal bodyguard to double as a secretary is Armand’s choice. What Richard doesn’t know might just save his life. Thankfully, Kate Braddock—retired Army—is more than up to the task. The last thing any one expected was a wild attraction to spark to life between Richard and Kate.

Armand is willing to do anything to make his best friend safe, but his choice may cost him the very thing he values so much: Richard’s friendship.

Favorite Richard Moments

Some Like It Royal – Reaching Out to Alyx

CARINA_0114_9781426897764_SomeLikeItRoyal“Your Highness? Please pardon the intrusion.”

No matter how much she practiced with Victor, it was always a jolt when someone else said it. She glanced up at the reflection in the glass behind her. She didn’t recognize the gentleman, so she turned, a polite smile on her face. “Please, call me Alyx or Miss Dagmar. It’s a little less of a mouthful than Your Highness.” And so much easier to respond to, but she avoided adding the caveat.

“Miss Dagmar. My name is Richard Prentiss.” He withdrew a card and handed it to her. She glanced down at the heavily embossed cardstock. The symbol in the corner was an elegant crest—one she recognized.

It represented her family.

She studied him. He didn’t resemble any of the photos she’d memorized nor did his features suggest a personal relationship with her. “Mr. Prentiss, it’s a pleasure to make your acquaintance.” Extending her hand, she wasn’t surprised when he bowed over it and brushed a kiss lightly to the air over one knuckle. It was a kind, respectful greeting.

“And a rare pleasure to make yours. I understand that you are attending this function to support your fiancé, Mr. Voldakov.”

She didn’t have to manufacture the soft smile curving her lips. “Yes, he’s done some wonderful work for the Takahashi Corporation and they are showing him a rare honor with this party. I would introduce you, but…” She motioned to the conference room Daniel vanished into.

“I would enjoy such an introduction but I am actually here for two reasons and I hope you’ll forgive the minor subterfuge.”

Sipping the wine, she resisted the urge to rub her suddenly damp palms against her dress. What subterfuge? The vellum card weighed heavily in her hand. Instead, she focused on breathing, calm, and canting her head to suggest a hint of patient curiosity. Hours of drills with Victor paid off in that moment. “And what subterfuge would that be, Mr. Prentiss?”

The man had the good grace to flush, a hint of red staining his ears. “To inquire whether you would accept an invitation from your cousin, His Highness, the Grand Duke Armand.”

My cousin.

A second jolt in as many minutes and her confidence wavered. The grand duke divided his time between his native Norway and France most of the year. The newspapers referred to him as a playboy, often featuring photographs of the prince with a host of women at various functions throughout Europe.

“Because an invitation cannot be extended if I will not accept.” It was a statement, not a question. Protocol demanded that no one could turn down the royal family, whether they were a displaced one or not. It was how the royals played.

“Precisely, Your Highness, and I apologize for putting you on the spot. His Highness recognizes that you may be reluctant to see him and asked that I extend to you his deepest desire to make your acquaintance. If you could see it in your heart to accept his invitation, he would like a chance to speak with you in person.” There was a subtext to his words, a suggestion that the grand duke wanted to do more than just talk to her. The jittery butterflies in her stomach flapped harder. This was exactly the type of invitation Daniel wanted, the reason he’d approached her. Access to the grand duke and his European connections could help him launch Spherecast’s influence in the EU.

So why did she hesitate?

“I’m not entirely sure what my schedule is.” That seemed the safest answer and her heart beat against her ribs so hard, she was certain he could hear it. “But if you would let me pass this card to my assistant, I can have him get in touch with you.” She tucked the card into her clutch, careful to make sure it slid inside before she snapped the little purse closed.

“Absolutely.” Prentiss’s expression relaxed and he smiled. “Which brings us to the second reason for my approach.”

The reminder that he had two reasons ramped her already emotionally unsettled state closer to full-blown panic. She took another sip of the wine and prayed the alcohol would relax the jangling of her nerves. Amazingly, her voice didn’t betray a quaver. “I am filled with curiosity.”

Prentiss actually grinned at that, some of the stiffness leaving his shoulders. Dark haired and dark eyed, he cut a striking image in his equally dark suit but she cataloged his looks more from a clinical standpoint.

His darkness couldn’t compete with the sunshine in Daniel.

“To give you a gift. Your birthday is approaching and whether you accept the invitation or not, the grand duke wanted you to have this.”

He held out a small box, wrapped in a simple gold foil. She had to set her wineglass down and slipped her clutch purse’s strap over her shoulder to take the box. Eagerness flared inside, pushing away the anxiety. “I’m surprised he would send such a gift, considering we have never met.” Maybe it wasn’t politically correct to say such a thing, but the sentiment remained genuine.

“He has many years to make up for and while this simple gift cannot possibly repair such a history of oversight, he hopes that you will wear it with the pride you should. His words, exactly, Highness.” Prentiss gave her another kind look and party or not, she slid one manicured nail through the tape and revealed a velvet jewelry box. She glanced at him before lifting the lid. Inside nestled a lovely cameo on a silver strand. But instead of a profile, it was her family crest set against a background of royal blue.

The breath caught in her throat and tears swam across her vision. “How can he accept me? Just like that?” She forgot about the rules, the manners and the control she’d worked to perfect.

“You are the image of your great-grandmother, Your Highness. If you’ll look beneath the necklace, he included a small photo of her. He has no doubts that you are indeed the grand duchess and he is most eager to welcome you to the family.”

The tears prickling her eyes threatened to spill. She chewed at her bottom lip and blinked at him. Prentiss shifted with just the barest hint of discomfort. Daniel appeared in her periphery, an arm snaking around her waist.

“Are you all right?” He murmured the words to her, but set a hard look on the gentleman talking to her.

She gave a watery little laugh and nodded, holding the necklace over to show him. “Daniel, this is Richard Prentiss, he’s—I’m not sure if you work for him or are just associated with the grand duke?” She glanced back to Prentiss.

“I’m a personal friend. Armand and I went to university together.” He extended a hand to Daniel, who accepted it only briefly, but continued to stare hard at him until Prentiss cleared his throat and retreated a step. “If you will excuse me, Your Highness, Mr. Voldakov. I will await your assistant’s call.”

Some Like It Scandalous – Calling His Best Friend on His Crazy

Carina_0514_9781426898242_SomeLikeItScandalousRichard circled the billiard’s table, eyeing potential shots. “You’re one crazy son of a bitch, Armand. What did you think she was going to do? See you again and beg you to take her back?”

Armand said nothing; he stared at the green felt table as though it might reveal the answer.

“Armand, seriously?” His best friend looked up from his shot. “You didn’t.”

The problem with Richard lay in how well he knew Armand. “I didn’t plan on groveling on bended knee.” But yes, I thought she would be more…more her…

She’d refused to drink out of the bottle, then ignored the glass he’d poured for her.

The attorney angled his hand against the edge of the table, balancing the cue stick between the thumb and forefinger. He snapped the stick forward and it tapped the cue ball, sending it careening after the blue stripe and sinking it. “You’re an idiot.”

“Helpful.” Armand sighed. His body hummed at the memory of her perfume, sweet and exotic. She’d rarely worn any when they lived together, but her shampoo—it had smelled of citrus and orchids, just like she did today.

“Look, I can do a lot, but the fact you even thought she would be happy to see you based on a summons to appear or lose her funding? Where did your diplomacy go?” Richard circled the table and cleared a second ball from the table.

“It’s been ten years. I thought—hoped—her temper might have cooled.” Ten years to regret leaving him—to regret never calling. When Richard sank a third shot, Armand set the pool cue aside and walked over to the bar. He needed something a lot stronger than water. From the moment she walked into his office, his response swamped his good sense and judgment. He’d wanted to run his fingers through her hair.

She was beautiful—heart-wrenchingly beautiful—but too pale. She’d squinted, as if her head bothered her, and for just the barest of seconds he glimpsed an unsteady step, a waver in her professional façade. He’d caught her arm—he just wanted to help—but she jerked away as if he’d hit her.

And the anger had flared in her eyes, a fiery beast if ever there was one. God, but the woman possessed a temper. Why the hell did he arrange to spend the rest of the week with her? She’d clearly wanted to be anywhere except his office. And the last thing I need is to spend it with her. But he’d wanted to know if she’d gotten over them—over him. Clearly, she had. So why hang on to something that never had a chance in the first place?

He poured in three fingers of brandy and tossed the whole thing back. The liquid heat burned through his system, churning his already agitated gut.

“Call Nikole. Get laid. You’ll feel better.”

“The wisdom of the ancients there, my friend.” Armand snorted, ignoring the curl of disgust at the very idea. “Nikole wants a marriage proposal and has informed me that if I wish to enjoy time with her, I must be prepared to put a ring on it.”

Richard laughed.

Turning to stare at his friend, he couldn’t help his own reluctant smile. “Yes, exactly so.” He poured another drink. “And Nikole is not the one I want.”

“I know.” The attorney sobered and finally missed a shot. He joined Armand at the bar and poured his own drink. “So, give yourself a few weeks and pick out another model. You like them, they’re easy and you can forget today.”

“I’m spending the rest of the week with Anna.” He waited for Richard’s reaction, and the man didn’t disappoint.

He choked, sputtering on the brandy, and swung his gaze up to stare at him. “Why?”

“She will be administrating Alyx’s scholarship fund and we’re folding it under the Dagmar Foundation. She’ll need to be brought up to speed.” Any of a dozen executives and administrative staff could handle it

“Bullshit.” Few people ever spoke to him like that—none while he grew up—and only two in his adulthood. Of those two, only Richard remained. “And when were you planning to tell me we were adding that program to the Dagmar Foundation?”

“Tonight. I need the paperwork pushed through by morning.” He looked at the amber liquid in the glass and swirled it around. She’d never liked wines or decanted liquors. She preferred beer—in the bottle—the cheaper the better. She liked seven-topping pizzas and sticky caramels mixed in with her popcorn. She’d always tasted of sin and sweetness when they kissed.

Richard snapped his fingers in Armand’s face. “Dude, you have it bad.”

Shaking off the alluring memories, he took another drink. It would be his last for the night. He would require all his wits about him in the morning if—when—she arrived for their session. “You haven’t called me dude in years.”

“You haven’t been this stupid over a woman in years.” The attorney leaned on the bar. “Tell me this—when did you decide to fold in that scholarship?”

Armand didn’t answer. The visceral blow he’d experienced when he saw her name in Alyx’s email lingered. He couldn’t believe it was really her—life and fate were not that cruel. Or so he always believed.

“When, Armand?” Richard repeated the question.

“After I found out Alyx hired her to be in charge of it.” He wasn’t proud of the admission. He’d spent an hour talking Alyx into placing her scholarship fund under the oversight of the Dagmar Foundation and then promised the newlywed he would handle all the details. The further he put Alyx out of Anna’s reach, the more in control he could exert.

“And the goal of this exercise?”

“To provide educational opportunities to underprivileged youth.” He drained the brandy and grabbed his pool cue, avoiding Richard’s knowing gaze and the truth. He could dance around both for some time. He lined up the shot and sank two balls. He completed two more shots before glancing up. “I want her back.”

“Okay.” He nodded slowly. “Then we need a plan.”

“I’ve got her attention—well, I commandeered her attention.” If she shows up—if she doesn’t just refuse to work with me altogether…

The attorney pulled out his phone. “So that’s step one, what’s the next step?”

Armand stared at the shot he lined up and blinked slowly.

“You have a next step—right?” Richard sighed.

No, he’d barely managed to push through that meeting with her today. Bringing her back tomorrow bought him some time.

“This isn’t you, Armand. You don’t twist in the wind and act all indecisive. What do you want to do next?”

He wanted to pin her against the wall and kiss her senseless. He wanted to lap up all that radiant passion she so easily shared with him. He wanted to find out what movies she liked and what book she curled up in bed with at night. He wanted…

Slamming the pool cue down on the table, he ignored Richard’s wince. “I want to know everything about her life. Where is she living? Is she living with someone?” The thought made him sick, but he pressed on. “What does she spend her free time on?”

Richard nodded, his thumbs moving swiftly as he typed on the miniature screen. “And while we dig up all this information?”

He cleared his schedule. Anna was his only talking point. “She hates the title.”

“That’s resentment, not hate.” Richard corrected. “But it’s an advantage. Use it.”

“To do what? Chase her away again? Let her box me up and put me squarely in the category she believes I belong?” He scowled. For someone so tempestuous and grounded in reality, she maintained a very black-and-white view of the world.

Thirteen years before, a busty little brunette burst into his introduction to business ethics class, interrupted the professor’s dry as hell lecture, and set the whole classroom laughing. With few seats to be had in the packed hall, he’d offered her his and she’d made him sit back down, while she squeezed into the narrow space next to him.

Their thighs touched for the entire class.

He never did hear what the professor droned on about with regard to compliance laws. He’d introduced himself, but she barely shook his hand before racing off. He didn’t even know what color her eyes were. A bribe at the register’s office earned him her schedule, and he’d waited for her outside her next class. The workload surprised him, but a week of putting himself in her path worked.

She’d said yes when he asked her out.

“Find all that out, but where does she jog in the morning? What coffee shop does she frequent? Where does she shop?” He drummed his fingers. “Her address is in the file, get that for me…”

“There’s a law against stalking.”

“Don’t be my attorney, Richard. Be my friend—help me.”

“Call her. Make up some excuse and get her on the phone.” Richard glanced at his watch. “It’s late, but it can’t hurt if you’re the last thing she thinks about before she goes to sleep.”

“Unless she hates me.”

“Oh, she’s probably angry, and like I said earlier, she resents the title. And the lie.” The droll response didn’t make him feel better. Richard held up his hands. “Look, you made a mistake and you paid for it—but at the end of the day, she was the one who walked.”

“She walked away because I’m a prince.” The bitter churn of that fact burned.

“You can’t change the fact that you’re a prince—or I guess you can, but it’s not like you can’t drop the titles altogether and walk away from your family.” Richard always knew what buttons to push. Armand was the head of his family, he couldn’t—and would never—abandon them.

“You are very good at poking holes, Richard, but do you have any suggestions?” He bit off the next words because his friend didn’t deserve the anger. Not this time. If anyone was at fault it was Armand himself.

“You can’t stop being a prince, Armand. So why bother?” Richard rolled his sleeves down one at a time and buttoned them at the cuffs. Their billiards game was over.

“What’s your point?” They’d already established that his position had an undesirable effect on Anna.

“My point, Your Highness.” Richard shrugged on his jacket. Disapproval rang in his words—he only used the appellation when Armand annoyed him. “You can’t stop being a prince, so why not use it to your advantage?”

Use it to my advantage how? She doesn’t like the damn title. He frowned.

Richard pulled his keys out of his pocket. “I’ll call you in the morning. I have some strings to go pull so you can stalk—court—your lady.”

Some Like it Deadly

Carina_0814_-9781426898860_SomeLikeItDeadlyBeing the best friend to a prince isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. As attorney and spokesperson for the royal Andraste family, Richard Prentiss lives under a microscope. Fair or not, he’s not able to date like a regular person. So when his personal assistant retires, Richard knows her pretty replacement, Kate, is strictly off-limits.

Kate Braddock’s resume includes special forces training and enough profiling work to pick a threat out of a crowd. None of that prepares her to resist the charming, down-to-earth attorney she’s assigned to protect. Determined to treat him like any other body to guard, she struggles to maintain her distance. It’s her job to step in front of the bullet with Richard’s name on it, nothing more.

When threats against the royal family take a deadly turn and his new assistant foils two attempts on his life, Richard’s grateful–and more than a little intrigued. There’s more to Kate than meets the eye, but what is she hiding? He’ll have to trust her with his life when the danger proves to be closer than either realized…

Book three of Going Royal

What We Want—Erotic Romance

facebook twitter

 

August brings the heat, and we want you to bring it too!

We’re actively seeking to acquire novel-length erotic romance and what better examples than works by our superstar authors Lynda Aicher and Jeffe Kennedy! Lynda’s new Game Play series will feature h-o-t hockey player romances and Jeffe has just released her new erotic romance/BDSM series, Falling Under. We’re also excited for Emily Ryan-Davis‘s new San Sebastian Sinners series which tangles with ménage…coming in 2015!

{49225590-7E3D-4CF1-A3F4-F6B0FBA0A8B8}Img100{F5B92B9A-74FE-4880-BB90-449B21708086}Img100{386995A9-1053-4D9B-B561-D50776D2DD95}Img100

Our editors’ complete wish lists for what they want to acquire RIGHT NOW is available here, but below are more specific requests in the erotic romance genre. Give us your passionate/kinky stories where sexy-times happen in the most daring of places! We know BDSM and club erotic romances are still hot, but we want to see where else you can take us!

Angela James, Editorial Director, is looking to acquire a dark erotic thriller that pushes the edges of exploring forced seduction, fantasy and eroticism

Rhonda Helms, Freelance Editor, is looking for super-sexy erotic contemporary romances, esp. military or first responders. Series potential is a bonus. LGBTQ/PoC welcome—actively seeking diverse submissions! She’s also looking to acquire envelope-pushing erotic romance, any genre.

Deborah Nemeth, Freelance Editor, is looking for erotic romances featuring badass alpha heroes, and she’d love a contemporary erotic series not set in a sex club.

Alissa Davis, Freelance Editor, is looking for erotic romance with strong dialogue and great sexual tension—bonus points for heroes and heroines who rock at talking dirty.

Mallory Braus, Freelance Editor, is looking for erotic thrillers and suspense. She’d love to see a femme fatale character. She’s also intrigued by the potential of a cross genre Erotic Urban Fantasy with a strong female lead against a strong male lead… For example: something like a Catwoman and Batman pairing.

Tina Burns, Freelance Editor, wants erotic romance for both het and LGBT. Give her it all!

Submit your erotic romance to Carina Press now, right here!

Carina Press Not-at-Nationals Pitch Session

facebook twitter

Feel like you’re missing out by not attending RWA Nationals this year? Good news! Not all of the editors here at Carina Press are attending either! And those who couldn’t attend this year are taking your pitches in the Carina Press Not-at-Nationals Pitch Session hosted right here on the Carina Press blog!

Have a manuscript you want considered by our fabulous editors? Now’s your chance! Post your pitch below in the comments section and check back to see if an editor has requested your material!

Editors participating in the pitch session:

Deborah Nemeth @DebNemeth
Alissa Davis @AlissaDenay
Melissa Johnson @MelissJohnson
Tina Burns @TinaBurns

PITCH CONTEST INSTRUCTIONS

Authors are invited to pitch their 200 word (maximum) query and first 100 words or first paragraph for submission. The contest will run from July 23 – July 27 – pitches submitted after this date will not be considered. Please check back on the blog! You must submit your pitch with a valid email address. Authors whose pitches are chosen will be contacted via email. Editors will request materials from authors by July 28. Send your submission no later than July 31, 2014 midnight Eastern. The link you receive will expire after that, and you will be unable to submit via this route. Good luck to all!

ELIGIBILITY TO PARTICIPATE:

1) A complete, ready-to-send, manuscript that falls within the commercial fiction genres that we publish. (Please view our submissions guidelines here)

2) You must be prepared to send your manuscript within 3 days of the Carina Press Not-at-Nationals Pitch Session.

3) The manuscript cannot be one that has previously received a pass letter from us.

4) The manuscript cannot be one that is currently under review with another Harlequin imprint

5) You may pitch more than one project.

HOW TO PARTICIPATE: 

1) Post your pitch as a comment on the “Carina Press Not-at-Nationals Pitch Session” blog post which is where the editors will be monitoring the pitches. this blog post will go live on July 23, 2014 9am Eastern.

2) Please do not post pitches for one book in the same blog comment. Enter a separate comment for a new book pitch

3) Please do not post your pitch for the same book more than once

4) Watch for a reply from a Carina Press editor.

5) If an editor lets you know that they’d like to see your submission and your manuscript is NOT currently on submission with us:

a) The editor will contact you via your email address which is required to comment on the blog post. Please be sure to use a valid email address for this purpose
b) Please follow the submission guidelines here and include all required information via the received Submittable link.

If more than one editor asks for your submission, you may choose which editor to send to, though you may also wish to indicate the second editor who had interest, in case the first editor chooses not to read it.

d) Send your submission no later than July 31, 2014 midnight Eastern. The link you receive will expire after that, and you will be unable to submit via this route.

NOTES ABOUT CARINA PRESS NOT-AT-NATIONALS PITCH SESSION

  • You don’t need to direct your pitch to a specific editor. The editors participating will be monitoring the blog comments throughout the day. However, if you want to bring it to the attention of an editor you think it’s particularly suited for, you are welcome to do so. At the bottom of this post is a list of participating Carina Press editors.
  • Please don’t post your pitch more than once on the blog. This includes not changing your pitch five times and posting it five different ways, please. This allows all authors equal opportunity to be seen. Thank you!
  • An updated list of what different editors are looking for is available here. You can see editor bios here.
  • Information about what we publish, our submissions guidelines and specific FAQs can be found here.
  •  Feedback is welcome! Please email us at generalinquiries@carinapress.com if ever you have specific, constructive feedback you’d like to share.

ONE LAST (VERY IMPORTANT) NOTE:

Even if your pitch isn’t selected by an editor, that doesn’t mean your project isn’t right for us. In the end, it’s the words you write in the story that will get us to acquire the book, not the words you wrote for the pitch, so if you’ve written something we publish, please still submit it to us. Your chances of having the manuscript acquired are just as good as those whose pitches we single out.

*Permission to forward this post, use it on blogs and author forums is permitted.*

Submit your pitch in the format below. Please be sure that your query and first 100 words/first paragraph adhere to the word counts below.

Name:

Title:

Genre:

Manuscript Word Count:

200 maximum word query:

First 100 words or first paragraph of your story:

Carina Press Not-at-Nationals Pitch is Coming!

facebook twitter

The Carina Press editorial team will be holding a pitch event on THE CARINA PRESS BLOG from july 23, 2014- july 27, 2014. 

 

Good news! Not all of the editors here at Carina Press are attending this year’s RWA Nationals in San Antonio. And those who couldn’t attend are taking your pitches in the Carina Press Not-at-Nationals Pitch Session hosted right here on the Carina Press blog!

This pitch session will be similar to the very popular #carinapitch we held back in February, but this time all action will take place on the Carina Press blog. Our pitch sessions have been very successful events! Our February pitch event resulted in requests for over 75 manuscripts and resulted in three new contracted authors.

Our ultimate goal is always to find new authors to acquire, not new authors to reject!

Please read on for details of how the event will work.

 

Beginning July 23, 2014, Carina Press freelance editors will be monitoring the Carina Press blog for book pitches from authors.

Eligibility:

1) You  must have a complete, ready-to-send, manuscript that falls within the commercial fiction genres that we publish. (Please view our submissions guidelines here)

2) You must be prepared to send your manuscript within 3 days of the Carina Press Not-at-Nationals Pitch Session

3) The manuscript pitched cannot be one that has previously received a pass letter from us

4) The manuscript cannot be one that is currently under review with another Harlequin imprint

5) You may pitch more than one project.

How to participate: 

1) Post your pitch as a comment on the “Carina Press Not-at-Nationals Pitch Session” blog post which is where the editors will be monitoring the pitches. This blog post will go live on July 23, 2014 at 9am Eastern.

Get ready to submit your pitch in the format below. Please be sure that your query and first 100 words/first paragraph adhere to the word counts below.

Name:

Title:

Genre:

Manuscript Word Count:

200 maximum word query:

First 100 words or first paragraph of your story:

2) Please do not post pitches for one book in the same blog comment. Enter a separate comment for a new book pitch

3) Please do not post your pitch for the same book more than once

4) Watch for a reply from a Carina Press editor

5) If an editor lets you know that they’d like to see your submission and your manuscript is NOT currently on submission with us:

a) The editor will send a Submittable link to the email address provided in your blog post. Please be sure to use a valid email address for this purpose.

b) Please follow the submission guidelines here and include all required information via the received Submittable link

If more than one editor asks for your submission, you may choose which editor to send to, though you may also wish to indicate the second editor who had interest, in case the first editor chooses not to read it.

c) Send your submission no later than midnight (EST) on July 31, 2014. The Submittable link provided will expire after that, and you will unable to submit.

  • Notes about carina press not-at-nationals pitch session: 

  •  You don’t need to direct your pitch to a specific editor. The editors participating will be monitoring the blog comments throughout the day. However, if you want to bring it to the attention of an editor you think it’s particularly suited for, you are welcome to do so. At the bottom of this post is a list of participating Carina Press editors.
  • Please don’t post your pitch more than once on the blog. This includes not changing your pitch five times and posting it five different ways, please. This allows all authors equal opportunity to be seen. Thank you!
  • An updated list of what different editors are looking for is available here. You can see editor bios here.
  • Information about what we publish, our submissions guidelines and specific FAQs can be found here.
  •  Feedback is welcome! Please email us at generalinquiries@carinapress.com if ever you have specific, constructive feedback you’d like to share.

One last (very important) note:

If your pitch isn’t selected by an editor, that doesn’t mean your project isn’t right for us. In the end, it’s the words you write in the story that will get us to acquire the book, not the words you wrote for the pitch, so if you’ve written something we publish, please still submit it to us. Your chances of having the manuscript acquired are just as good as those whose pitches we single out.

*Permission to forward this post, use it on blogs and author forums is permitted.*

Participating editors:

Deb Nemeth @DebNemeth
Alissa Davis @AlissaDenay
Melissa Johnson @MelissJohnson
Tina Burns @TinaBurns

 

Romantic Suspense – Give Us Your Drama!

facebook twitter

{819FE405-7506-476E-B280-5ECCBAAFB194}Img100l

Publishing trends can be funny. What’s “dead” one year could very well be on a must-have list the next, and vice versa. Romantic Suspense is all the rage at the moment—it’s being asked for at conferences, highlighted on third-party retailers, and hailed as the next “big thing,” once again. That’s exciting to us, because the Carina editors have a special kind of love for heart-pounding stories of love mixed with danger, and Romantic Suspense has always been a genre we actively acquire.

We’ve seen incredible success with and reader investment in Marie Force’s New York Times bestselling FATAL series and others, and are eager to expand our already-robust offerings in 2015 and beyond.

Angela James, Editorial Director, has been asking for a great series featuring mercenaries. Anti-heroes and anti-heroines welcome. Strong female protagonists a must! She is looking for something both action-packed, with lots of things blowing up and getting shot (she’s bloodthirsty!), and also sexy. Heroes who are totally into their heroines will be adored. Heroines who can hold their own against alpha dudes and kick some ass will be moved up to the top of her reading queue.

Kerri Buckley, Editor, would like to see a romantic suspense series set in the wilds of Alaska. Think “Northern Exposure” with a strong suspense arc. She’s also looking for romantic suspense with Eastern European anti-heroes. Real Russian bad boys, please. And finally, suburban spies. Kerri would love to see a high-octane romantic suspense series centering on spies gone deep undercover in an American suburb.

Rhonda Helms, Freelance Editor, is actively seeking a New Adult romantic suspense. Angsty, thrilling, with active characters and a real sense of danger. LGBTQ/PoC welcome—show her the diversity!

Deborah Nemeth, Freelance Editor, would love to acquire a military romantic suspense series, featuring intense alpha heroes and men or women in uniform—SEALs, Rangers, SAS, marines, firefighters, pilots, smoke jumpers…

Melissa Johnson, Freelance Editor, would love to edit a romantic suspense standalone or series that has a new adult flare. She’s looking for well-crafted danger and intrigue, and high emotional drama between the main characters.

Mallory Braus, Freelance Editor, is looking for romantic suspense series that feature a ”Band of Brothers” feel. Especially stories that involve a group-a specialized FBI team, a crew of firemen, a police unit, etc. Where the job risks are high, and there’s a solid connection. Also, thanks to a sudden obsession with television shows “Chicago Fire” and “Chicago PD,” she’d love to read a series based around a fire rescue squad or an intelligence unit.

Alissa Davis, Freelance Editor, would like to find a military romantic suspense series—m/m or m/f, historical or contemporary.

Have you been working on something that fits the bill for one of our editors? Submit your story HERE.

 

The Art of Play-Acting—Kari Edgren

facebook twitter

Kari Edgren_Blog ImageSometimes it’s just plain boring being human. No special powers to control the elements or to fly. No immunity to pain or mortality. No supernatural abilities to fight evil and protect those you love. See my point? Boring.

Marilyn Monroe had it spot on when she said, “Looking back, I guess I used to play-act all the time. For one thing, it meant I could live in a more interesting world than the one around me.” Writing is my form of play-acting as the worlds that turn in my head are much more exciting than the one where I currently reside.

In comes Selah Kilbrid from Goddess Born, a character who took her first breath while I watched my son run up and down a lacrosse pitch, alternating between passing a hard rubber ball and beating the opposing players with a metal stick. During one particularly long game, my mind drifted thousands of years away to the earliest Celtic people, most likely because they also had a tendency to hit each other with sticks.

What if the stories were true about these ancient races? What if there really were ‘people’ living in this world who had literally descended from the gods and goddesses as the Irish once believed? Would certain powers have been passed on as well, like the gift to heal any wound or illness in a matter of seconds? And what would such a gift entail? For me, two words came to mind— empathy and service. The same traits needed for love, and also what truly separated the heroes from the villains regardless of their specific supernatural ability.

I’m a bit embarrassed to say that I can’t remember if my son’s team won or lost that day, but an idea gained ground that then kept me ‘play-acting’ for the next two years.

So thank heaven for lacrosse. And for the very human gift of imagination that, if we allow it, will carry us far beyond reality’s reach before delivering us safely home. Though if ever given a chance, would you chose to live where everyone has something of the supernatural? Or would you rather keep things as are, known and fairly predictable, in a world were we still occasionally hit each other with sticks?

Carina_0514_9781426898365_GoddessBornPennsylvania, 1730

Selah Kilbrid keeps a dangerous secret: she has the power to heal.

A direct descendent of the Celtic goddess Brigid, it’s Selah’s sacred duty to help those in need. But as the last of the Goddess Born living in the New World, she learned from an early age to keep her supernatural abilities hidden. The Quaker community of Hopewell has always been welcoming, but there’s no doubt they would see her hanged if her gift was revealed.

When a prominent minister threatens to try her with witchcraft unless she becomes his wife, Selah has only one hope—that her betrothed, a distant cousin from Ireland, arrives as planned. Marrying Samuel would keep her secret safe, preserve her sacred bloodline, and protect her from being charged as a witch.

But when news of Samuel’s death reaches the Colonies, Selah is truly on her own. Terrified, she faces an impossible choice—forfeit her powers and marry the loathsome Nathan? Or find an imposter to pose as her husband and preserve her birthright?

Goddess Born is available at Carina Press | Amazon | B&N

Kari Edgren likes to write both historical and contemporary fiction, so long as it has some sort of paranormal bent to it. When not busy writing, she enjoys running, eating too much watermelon, and just being with her family. You can connect with Kari on Facebook or at kariedgren.com

 

A Regency Aspie

facebook twitter

My latest historical romance, An Heir of Uncertainty, is a regency with a gothic flavor—and a few surprises.

An Heir of Uncertainty cover - Lina, Countess of Radbourne

Yorkshire, 1820

Lina, Lady Radbourne, thought being a countess would rescue her from poverty. Unfortunately, her young groom failed to plan for the future, and his drunken accident left her widowed and pregnant. Now Colonel Winstead Vaughan—Win—will inherit her late husband’s fortune…unless she gives birth to a boy. Win is her natural enemy, so why can’t she stop thinking about him?

Win is stunned to learn he stands to inherit a vast fortune. He’s even more surprised to find himself falling for the beautiful, spirited Lady Radbourne, who is the one woman who stands in the way of a life he’d only imagined.

When someone tries to poison Lady Radbourne, suspicion falls on Win. There’s a clever killer in their midst, and if Win doesn’t solve the mystery fast, Lina may perish. He needs to win her trust, but how can he prove it’s she he wants, and not the fortune?

One of An Heir of Uncertainty‘s surprises comes in the form of a secondary character, Freddie Vaughan, the hero’s unconventional and single-minded younger brother. While Win works to unmask the killer menacing the lovely Countess of Radbourne, Freddie remains focused on his driving passion, raising pigeons.

I based Freddie on members of my own family with similarly intense interests. They have one other thing in common: they all have Asperger’s Syndrome.

Asperger’s runs in my family—my older sister and my oldest son are both Aspies, and I’m certain my grandfather had Asperger’s even though he was born at least a generation too early for a diagnosis. I based Freddie largely on my son, or at least gave him one of my son’s traits: hyperlexia, the super-ability to read at a precocious age without prior training, often accompanied by a difficulty understanding speech. We first noticed my son could read when he was just two years old and my husband was carrying him through a shopping mall. Our son pointed at a credit card decal on a store window and said “Discover.” We thought he was simply recognizing the logo from a television commercial, but when we pointed at a store name he read that too. We discovered he could read pretty much anything, but at the same time he had trouble expressing himself verbally. You can learn more about his unusual style of communication in An Heir of Uncertainty, where Win tells Lina, the heroine, about Freddie’s “rather backward manner of expressing himself” as a child.

Of course, no one in Freddie’s world—England in 1820—recognizes that he has Asperger’s, or indeed any particular neurological condition. The other characters in An Heir of Uncertainty just view him as eccentric.

Nikola Tesla, possible Aspie?

Inventor and engineer Nikola Tesla (1867-1943) is one historical figure doctors have retrospectively diagnosed with Asperger’s. He even shared Freddie’s love of pigeons.

They’re living more than a century before Asperger’s was first described and given a diagnostic label in the 1940s. Even today, researchers are still refining and redefining the criteria that make up an autism spectrum diagnosis; last year, “Asperger’s Syndrome” was dropped from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) and grouped under the more general term “Autism Spectrum Disorders.”

I sometimes see characters with Asperger’s on TV or in the movies (on The Bridge, for example, or in Parenthood—and though he’s never been labeled an Aspie on the show, Sheldon of The Big Bang Theory bears an uncanny resemblance to my son). They’re always in a modern setting. I wanted to set a character with Asperger’s in a regency because, while terms like “autism spectrum” and “neurotypicals” may be recent additions to the lexicon, I’m pretty sure Aspies have been around every bit as long as neurotypicals have.

Of course, An Heir of Uncertainty isn’t “about” Asperger’s. Freddie is merely a secondary character in a love story, the tale of a widowed army colonel and the title and fortune he may or may not inherit, depending on whether his predecessor’s lovely widow gives birth to a boy or a girl. It’s a mystery and a gothic and, most of all, a romance. I think you’ll enjoy getting to know Win Vaughan and Lina, Countess of Radbourne, as the alliance they form against a deadly threat grows into something deeper.

Do you have anyone in your life with Asperger’s, or have an Asperger’s diagnosis yourself? How do you feel about the way Aspies are portrayed in fiction? Leave a comment and you’ll be entered to win a copy of An Heir of Uncertainty. You can enter up until 9 a.m. Eastern time on March 17 (St. Patrick’s Day). I’ll announce the winner here and on my website, alyssaeverett.com.


Alyssa Everett

An Heir of Uncertainty is Alyssa Everett’s fourth regency romance, joining Ruined by Rumor, Lord of Secrets, and A Tryst With Trouble, all available from Carina Press. She hopes you’ll visit her website and follow her on Twitter, Pinterest and Facebook, where she promises not to spam you relentlessly.

Journey to the Stars

facebook twitter

Did you ever stop and think what it would be like to live on a different world from Earth?  Not just an inhospitable one like Mars or a moon around Jupiter, but a world capable of supporting human life.  Trouble is, planets like those are light-years from us and to travel to another star system would take years, decades even.  Would you still sign up to go if given the chance?  I agree, it’s a big decision.

In my science fiction series, The Epherium Chronicles, I wanted to explore that possibility.  There are choices to be made—both good and bad—to make it happen.  The outcomes of those decisions will have severe repercussions.

One of the fun parts of writing Embrace, and the other novels in this series, was the creation of the characters.  My main character, Captain James Hood, is a brilliant commander, but a reluctant hero.  He’s been on the forefront of a lot of battles.  Despite his victories, there are combat decisions that continue to plague his mind.

For another character, I wanted to add something close to me.  My father suffers from Parkinson’s disease.  To honor his struggle, I used a nervous system disorder in the background of Lieutenant Maya Greywalker.  Maya is one of three surviving subjects from a genetics experiment to cure a disease similar to Parkinson’s.  The results of the experiment left her with augmented abilities.  I’ve had long conversations with readers about my characters, and besides Hood, Maya Greywalker is always a topic.

It’s been a great experience creating Embrace and I’m excited for readers to enjoy it as well.

The Epherium Chronicles: Embrace

Book one of The Epherium Chronicles

Hope. Captain James Hood of the Earth Defense Forces remembers what it felt like. Twenty-five years ago, it surged through him as a young boy watching the colony ships launched by mega-corporation Epherium rocket away. He, like so many others, dreamed of following in the colonists’ footsteps. He wanted to help settle a new world—to be something greater.

Then came the war…

Hope. During years of vicious conflict with an insectoid alien race, it was nearly lost. Though Earth has slowly rebuilt in the six years since the war, overcrowding and an unstable sun have made life increasingly inhospitable. When mysterious signals from the nearly forgotten colony ships are received, Hood is ordered to embark on a dangerous reconnaissance mission. Could humanity’s future sit among the stars?

Hope. Hood needs it now more than ever. As secrets about the original colonists are revealed and the Epherium Corporation’s dark agenda is exposed, new adversaries threaten the mission, proving more dangerous to Earth than their already formidable foes…

 

T.D. Wilson

T.D. Wilson was born in 1968 in Troy, Ohio and has been an avid fan of science fiction and fantasy from a very young age. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and has supported the systems and networks in several of the largest Supercomputing data centers in the world. His early thirst for adventure in reading began as he explored many of the great stories of Sherlock Holmes by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. As his reading scope expanded, Mr. Wilson was fascinated by strange new worlds from the magical of Middle Earth and Narnia to the far reaches of space in Star Trek and Babylon 5. As a science fiction author, he strives to integrate a realistic flavor to his worlds by providing his readers a feel for the real science in science fiction. A topic he loves to discuss with his friends and readers. Mr. Wilson still lives in Ohio with his wife and their two sons.

Connect with T.D. Wilson – Facebook | Twitter | Blog

 

Big Bad Wolf?

facebook twitter

Close your eyes for a minute. No, wait, don’t, because you’re reading my blog post and one presumes you want to keep doing so.

Pretend to close your eyes for a moment while reading this blog post and whisper to yourself, “Werewolf hero.”

What kind of image does that conjure?

A hot, sexy bad boy in leather, riding a motorcycle when he can’t run free in the forest? A gruff and hyper-masculine pack alpha determined to keep his people safe and in line? A borderline vicious anti-hero trying to control his literal inner demon? Somebody big and strong and scary enough to make anybody weak at the knees?

What about a nerdy scientist more interested in the biology and magic of the shifting process than howling at the moon and finding a mate?

I know, right? But even in wolf world, it seems like it would take all kinds. You need your alphas and your brooders and your sexy bad boys. But why wouldn’t wolves be scientists and dreamers and artists and, heck, grocers and accountants and nice male nurses (like in the SyFy TV show Being Human)?

They can…in my shifter world.

Marcus Delgado is a werewolf and a scientist. He’s a sexy scientist, of course, at least according to witch-in-hiding Katie Zhang, whom he encounters in the beginning of WITCH INTERRUPTED, my second book with Carina. It’s a paranormal romance set in the same world as PACK AND COVEN, where the speculative elements include wolves (shapeshifting) and witches (magic).

In fact, Marcus, because of certain events in his past, is obsessively curious about why witches change permanently into werewolves when they—spoiler alert for PACK AND COVEN!—have sex with one. However, wolves can never change into witches or obtain the magical powers and longevity of witches. Marcus is determined to find out why, and he decides Katie is the perfect person to assist him…whether she wants to or not.

The intelligence, focus and dedication of a less traditional hero like Marcus made him a very appealing character to write about and hopefully one for readers to meet. So many of the characters who tend to linger with me aren’t necessarily the alphas and the swashbuckling heroes. The clever, background characters, the scientists, the tech gals, the ones without bulging muscles and multiple guns and overriding need to control whatever disaster is going on around them—I remember those characters, too. I love watching them blossom when the story centers on them instead of the obvious alphas.

They’re complicated, layered, and surprising. And they’re smart. I just adore smart!

TV examples include: Simon Tam from Firefly; both Willow and Giles from Buffy the Vampire Slayer; Daniel Jackson from Stargate SG-1; Monroe and Rosalie in Grimm; and Chuck Bartowski from Chuck and his predecessor, Jake from Jake 2.0.

There are countless examples of these types of characters in literature and cinema, usually relegated to sidekicks or secondary characters. As an author, I get to make them the protagonists and find out what really makes them tick.

Who are your favorite brainy badasses and nerdy but awesome characters in books and TV?

****

Purchase WITCH INTERRUPTED at Carina Press.

About Jody Wallace:

WEBSITE | MEANKITTY | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | GOODREADS | PINTEREST

Bittersweet Joy — Not Just A Great Name For A Truffle

facebook twitter

Almost a year ago I released A Fine Romance, featuring a chocolatier hero. I spent quite a few months dreaming up interesting truffle flavor combinations for his book. And since it was only number two in my Aisle Bound series, I couldn’t stop once it came out. More of his delicious truffles had to be dreamed up for the ensuing books (in case you’re wondering, I envision the Bittersweet Joy truffle as a dark chocolate and Chambord combo).

9781426897955_MatchlessRomanceBut this week I am full of the actual emotion of bittersweet joy, for it is the release of A Matchless Romance, the fourth and final book in the Aisle Bound series. Bitter at the thought of no more research about chocolate for me (sigh). Worse yet, it means saying goodbye to a cast of characters whom I love. A world that quite literally changed my career.

I’ll miss Ivy, the romance-a-holic heroine who started the whole thing. I’ll pine for Gib, my unapologetic yet wholly reformed man whore who makes everything a little bit sexier with his British accent. I’ll miss spotlighting the gloriousness of all my favorite spots in Chicago, from the iconic Wrigley Field to the beauty of Buckingham Fountain and the Italian restaurant where my husband and I shared so many terrific, five course wine dinners.

And I’m joy filled, because I’m beyond excited to share this release with the world. As the final book in the series, A Matchless Romance revisits everybody, ties up every loose end. Oh, don’t get me wrong, it is a thoroughly funny and sexy story all on its own. Not to mention accidentally topical, as it features a medal-winning athlete as my hot-yet-nerdy video game designer. When I wrote it, I had no idea it would come out during Sochi—but I’m sure not complaining! Witty banter? Hot sex? Heartfelt connection? It has all those things, just like the other three books in the series—as will the next trilogy, which I’ve already begun to write.

Yup, I have to remind myself that there will be more books—just not a part of this wonderfully wacky wedding-planning crew. There will be more characters and love and laughter. In fact, I’m already crazy about this whole new crew of tight-knit friends that you’ll get to meet in June, when book one in the Shore Secrets series comes out. Which means writing is a lot like life. You connect with some awesome friends, and then life tugs you in a new direction.

But this week I am going to whimper, just a little at having to say goodbye.

Purchase from Carina Press

Website | Blog | Pinterest | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon Author Page |Facebook