Welcome Pitch Session with Libby Murphy!


Dear Authors,

I’m Libby Murphy, and I’m a new freelance editor for Carina Press. This is a pretty exciting time for me because I’m on the hunt for books! I’m just starting out at Carina, so right now I don’t have any books on my list. I’m super excited to start acquiring and about getting to work with talented authors.

With that hunger for submissions in mind, I’m here on the blog today from 9 am Eastern to 9 pm Eastern to offer a personal feedback opportunity. Pitch me your book in the comments below; I’ll be requesting manuscripts and offering personalized, expedited feedback on ten of them!

Before we move on to the rules, I bet you’re wondering what kinds of books I’m looking for. In no particular order, here are some things I’d love to see:

  • Sexy contemporary romance with humor, heated banter, and adventurous plots (adventure is a loose term, btw–it can be an actual adventure, like through the jungle, or an emotional adventure).
  • Romantic suspense of all kinds, although I do prefer a storyline that’s a bit heavier on the romance, and even some humor here and there. I’d love to see anything from a small town caper to an Indiana Jones-like adventure.
  • Cozy mysteries that feature a smart, sassy heroine who can grow not only over the course of one book, but throughout a series.
  • Paranormal romance and urban fantasy that’s full of wicked awesome world building. I’m not a huge fan of psychics and vampires, but I adore dragons and shapeshifters.
  • Science fiction romances that feature dystopian worlds, worlds falling apart, space adventures, futuristic worlds, and more.


In all of the above categories, I am happy to consider adult romance, new adult romance, LGBT, and all heat levels (although I do tend to gravitate toward sexier stories).




  • 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.)
  • You must pitch your manuscript in the form of a comment on this blog post between 9 am EST and 9 pm EST.
  • You must be prepared to send your manuscript by June 15, 2015. Any manuscripts sent to my attention after June 15, 2015 will still be fairly reviewed by me but won’t be eligible for the feedback opportunity.
  • The manuscript you’re pitching must be new material, not previously published material, whether self-published or released via a publisher. Only new material will be considered during this event.
  • The manuscript cannot be one that has previously received a pass letter from Carina Press.
  • You may pitch more than one project. All submissions will be considered, but only ten will receive personal feedback.



  • If your book meets the guidelines above, pitch it to me in the comments below.
  • Watch for a response in the comments! If I respond to your pitch asking you to submit, please send it to us via Submittable, following the submission guidelines Make sure to address your query letter to me and to note that your manuscript was requested in the blog pitch session.


I will be selecting ten pitches for feedback, but I welcome all submissions! If your pitch isn’t selected for feedback, you are still welcome to submit it to Carina, as we’re always open to submissions. All submissions will be considered, but only ten will receive personal feedback as a part of this opportunity.

And one last note. If you don’t have something ready to go, no worries! I’m always open for submissions, and would be happy to consider your project at a later date through the regular submissions process.

I’m looking forward to seeing your pitches!

Best wishes,


84 thoughts on “Welcome Pitch Session with Libby Murphy!”

  1. Jonathan Peace says:

    Hi Libby

    My untitled fantasy novel is set within the world of Sorroah (pronounced sorrow), and follows Aiela, an Enoahan priestess, who must travel to the Arridian capital city to retrieve a stolen Enoahan artefact before it can be used to conjure a dormant evil.

    In the city she discovers there are many differences between the Enoahan and Arridian way of life and she struggles with her task.

    As war between the two peoples grows ever imminent Aiela fights to uncover the truth about the ancient artefact and the power it contains.

    This is the first novel I haveplanned set within Sorroah.

  2. Stephanie Fournet says:

    Hi Libby,

    My third novel, Butterfly Ginger, is complete with a word count of 90,000.

    Pitch: Butterfly Ginger is the story of first love getting a second chance. Six years ago–the summer before freshman year–Nate Bradley and Blythe Barnes met and fell hard. Even with plans to attend college in different cities, they’re convinced that nothing can tear them apart—until everything does. Now, life in South Louisiana is giving them the chance to put the pieces back together.

    Plot: Disaster forces young lovers to make choices that drive them apart and scar them for years, but their bond outlasts guilt, regrets, and heartbreak.

    Themes: Second chances
    Enduring love
    Caring for a special needs parent
    Transgender/gender identity

    Genres: Contemporary Romance
    New Adult

  3. Rachel Somer says:

    Dear Libby,
    The Dead Army, led by the Dark Prince, is spreading from the Shadow Land. Death ships patrol the seas and legions of shadow walkers hunt for the one who could end the Dark Prince’s reign. Luckily for him, the key to victory has no idea he’s looking for her.
    Adria is an 18-year-old with a secret magical power. When a vicious creature suddenly attacks her, she hurtles into the terrifying kill or die world beyond the walls where she has the starring role in an ancient prophecy. Forced to accept the help of a deadly assassin–a cold-hearted immortal she’s sworn to hate–Adria embarks on a journey across a sea ruled by pirate clans and through jungles roamed by bloodthirsty monsters. But every step she takes toward the truth is a step into the schemes of the southern kingdoms. Adria may not like what her protector has planned for her, but she’s powerless against an immortal’s mysterious charming powers.
    NAMELESS (107,000 words) is an Eastern-inspired romantic high-fantasy; think Shadow and Bone meets The Last Samurai.
    Thank you!

  4. Desiree Oz says:

    The Art of the Chase

    He’s a famous – or rather, infamous – anonymous street artist (think Banksy, but sexier). She’s an arts reporter tasked with tracking him down and revealing his identity. She needs to find him in order to make her career, he’s determined not to give himself away and ruin his career. But neither of them can resist the attraction between them, even when it puts both of their work – and lives – on the line.

    I had recently submitted this story to Cosmo Red Hot Reads from Harlequin however the line closed to subs right after I sent mine in. I was contacted by Red Hot Reads editor Deirdre McCluskey who felt “the writing is strong” and suggested I submit it to Carina Press. I’m currently re-editing the story to bring it from a novella to a full-length book (60,000 words) and will be done by next week.

    For a little more on the story inspiration, you can check out my The Art of the Chase Pinterest board here: https://www.pinterest.com/desireeozXO/the-art-of-the-chase-novel/

    Thank you so much for this opportunity, Libby!

    Desirée Oz


    1. Libby Murphy says:

      Hi Desiree,

      I’d like to take a look at this one. Please follow the instructions in the original post to submit your book. Be sure to mention that it was part of this event!

      Thank you!


      1. Desiree Oz says:

        Hi Libby,

        Thank you so much! I’m so thrilled! I’ll be sure to send it in a.s.a.p.

        Have an amazing day/night!

  5. Chris Buono says:

    Strapped artistic director meets mysterious lawyer and jeopardy thrives. Can a secret admirer save A D in time? 55k Contemp Ro.

  6. Courtney Sheets says:

    Hi Libby,

    What if the Mob never left Las Vegas? What time froze around the city? What happens when the past and present collide in the ultimate city of sin?

    In Mob Rules, a 55,000 word Dieselpunk Noir romance, A detective & a former showgirl are forced together in an effort stop the most ruthless mob boss in Vegas

    Courtney Sheets

  7. Maria Harbor says:

    Dear Libby,

    All YAXSEY and SMANIT wanted was to live in peace as full members of the island tribe of the Nook. They were almost old enough to marry once they exceeded the age one could be cursed with a black mark and mutant ability. Those with the mark, tribe or not, were put to death to protect the tribe and keep peace and safety. When Yaxsey is blinded with a mutant mark, she runs to the one person that might not kill her on sight, her betrothed. Smanit puts aside the tribe and his dreams of a normal life to help his betrothed escape the death sentence the mark brings. Together they flee to the mainland and the kingdom of the city people.

    Lost in an unfamiliar land, while Yaxsey’s mutant ability grows each day, Yaxsey and Smanit have to find safety and peace in their new tribe of two. Soon they are found, followed and have to run for their lives once again. Smanit has to trust the lessons his father taught him, and the love he has for the woman at his side, to fight a battle with an unknown enemy. Things go from bad to worse when Yaxsey is captured. Now Smanit has to trust a stranger, a marked stranger, if he has any hope of freeing Yaxsey before she meets the chopping block.

    Tribe is a 50,000 word paranormal romance. It is book one in a series.

    Thank you,
    Maria Harbor

  8. Shadiah says:

    Taming the Legend

    Sexy contemporary romance, 48,000 words of sensual heat charting the romance between a notorious heart throb and his innocent chef.

    Sit back and watch the sizzling chemistry and love unfold with the ultimate jaded hero and feisty heroine who isn’t afraid of speaking her mind!

  9. Cate Tayler says:

    Second chances are for suckers. At least that’s what Ethan Thomas believes. After a betrayal he can’t soon forget or forgive, Ethan walked away, determined to put his soon-to-be ex-wife, Lainie, out of his mind and make a fresh start. His plan almost works—until she shows up unannounced on his doorstep. He could move on with his life, if only seeing her again didn’t remind him of how good it felt to love her. Lainie Thomas is even more determined to convince Ethan that things aren’t always what they seem and their marriage deserves another chance. She’ll do whatever it takes to make Ethan see the truth, but is it too late to reclaim the happy ending they both deserve?

    Set in a fictional coastal Connecticut town, THE WAY TO YOU, a 75,000-word contemporary romance, weaves emotional depth with moderate sensuality, touching on themes of forgiveness, friendship, and reconciliation. I wanted to create a story that would resonate with anyone who has been in a long-term relationship, with its inevitable bouts of complacency, and leave them with a hopeful resolution.

    I have been a professional writer since 2007 as a columnist, blogger, and copywriter, with an occasional foray into creative non-fiction that included having a personal essay chosen for a published anthology. THE WAY TO YOU was recently selected as one of three finalists in the Virginia Romance Writers Fool for Love Contest.

    Thank you for the pitch opportunity!

    Lynn Tayler
    writing as Cate Tayler

  10. Sunni says:

    Good afternoon, Libby.

    Play a Game With Me is a 59,000+ word sexy contemporary romance.

    When Tess utters Max’s name in an erotic moan their lives forever merge regardless of her father’s interference and his mother’s revenge. One kiss, one lie, one all consuming romance could unravel a corporate empire.

    Millionaire CEO Maximilian Westfield doesn’t care about the arranged marriage his mother is forcing on him until he meets Tess, a feisty costume designer who will never meet his mother’s standards for his wife.

    But, Tess Medici has a secret. Keep it, and she might lose Max. Tell it, and she’ll never know if he loves her or her money.

    Thank you the opportunity to pitch our stories.

  11. Brandy Ayers says:

    The Arrangement is a contemporary erotic romance of 85,000 words.

    The mind is a tricky thing. No one knows that better than Michelle. Forced to change careers after her dream of making a mark in the journalism world implodes, she finds herself unable to stop fantasizing about her new boss, Jeremiah. And every other man she comes across. The uncontrollable daydreams are becoming a problem. Not even an orgasm inducing visit to her sexy as hell friend, Russ, can stem the need for her mind to wander. But why is Russ hiding something from her? And is the flirting with her boss really all in her imagination? Caught between two men, trapped by her ambition, and fooled by her own mind, how can Michelle trust anything in her life when dreams seem so real?

  12. Yvonne Rediger says:

    Dear Editor,

    “The Shape of Us” is a completed paranormal romance manuscript of 70,000 words. This story is about shapeshifters and mages, second chances at love, and eliminating threats made on the pack’s children.

    The setting is paranormal reality on Vancouver Island, where, Jess Raiway (24) float nurse at the local hospital and pack mage, has been forced out by the Vancouver Island Clan shapeshifter pack by Alpha Lasha Cooper after the death of her mate Julian Cooper which Lasha blames for Jess even though there is no rational reason for it, but then werewolves are emotional creatures and not always logical.

    Lasha now has to ask Jess for help, she is in over her head when her son Dylan is poisoned and she thinks the pack is being targeted.

    Jess has many reason for not helping Lasha, chief among her reasons is the fact that Iain Trennor, Jess’s old boyfriend and now the ranking male Alpha, is back on the Island and back with the Pack.

    Jess tells herself she can handle it and ignore her feelings and physical responses to Iain as well as his growing relationship with Lasha. Jess and Iain start to investigate Dylan’s poisoning and uncover a plot by some of their most trusted people.

    However, Iain wants Jess, he has no intention of stepping into the previous Ruling Alpha’s shoes no matter what Lasha wants. Iain just has to convince Jess of that.

    This is book one, I am currently working on book two which is a separate story arch that includes some of the characters from book one, and also takes place on Vancouver Island.

    Thank you for this opportunity.

    Yvonne Rediger

  13. Sandra Stone says:

    Congratulations on your new position Libby,

    COASTIES: Harborville is a 65,000 word Romantic Suspense.

    People are being shot at . . . Someone doesn’t like authority figures. Or children.
    The U.S. Coast Guard’s newly appointed Officer-in-Charge, Rose Whitney desperately wants to make her late father proud. All work, Rose fails to allow time for friends at her new post in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. But when her launch explodes and she is rescued by former Navy Seal and Native American, Robert Lawhorn, a switch is turned on.
    As this unsolved terrorism escalates, tensions threaten a civil war between the wealthy Indian Casino owners and the formerly powerful ‘Yoopers.’
    But who is really responsible for targeting Rose? Will trusting Lawhorn put Rose’s life, her career . . . or her heart in jeopardy?

    Thank you!

    Sandra Stone


  14. Lindsay Larson says:

    Dear Libby,

    Erotic romance novelist Natalie Fraser has structured her entire life around her family. She lives in Vancouver with her recovering-alcoholic, NHL-star brother and his teenage daughter. Her writing career must remain hidden for her to maintain a teaching position at her niece’s school. Caring for her family extends to protecting Keir, her brother’s best friend, from a publicity nightmare. After wrapping up a successful TV series, Scottish actor Keir Mackinnon’s careful grip on his life is being disrupted by his ex-wife, who is churning up an internet scandal. Natalie agrees to help him save face by faking a relationship. If the public sees him happy and normal, his wife’s lies will lose their power. Surely their lives are too different for either’s heart to be in danger?

    Despite their casual intentions, searing mutual attraction sees them falling in love while steaming up the portholes on her family’s sailboat. Natalie’s feelings for Keir clash with the expectations she has created for herself just as publicity threatens to expose her novelist identity. Caught between her family and his bi-continental life, they both must redefine love to find it together.

    Complete at 100 000 words, BEST LAID PLANS is an adult contemporary romance. It stands alone, but is intended as the first in a trilogy woven around a Gulf Island in British Columbia.

    Thank you for your consideration,

    1. Libby Murphy says:

      Hi Lindsay,

      This looks like fun! Please take a look at the instructions above, and send me your full manuscript. Be sure to mention that yours was selected as part of this pitch event.

      Thank you!


      1. Lindsay Larson says:

        Oh, wow, thank you! I will send it ASAP.

  15. kholo Matsha says:

    Dear Libby
    Long ago in the hall of Ma’at Ammut, the devour of hearts rebelled creating demons to hunt human hearts for her. To protect humans Anubis, god of dead imbued his trusted high priests with the ability to shift into his form: the Jackal, creating the Guardian of Anubis.
    Transformed by force, and bound to a master, Leon lives with a creature that turns his skin black. As an Unborn, he’s kept as a slave and is deprived of any desires but to follow that of his master.
    Driven by guilt Zaya, the princess of Kemet, has no other wish but to find her brother and she needs her lure to that. Only the arrival of her mate threatens her resolve, and to make things worse he’s an unborn.

    Thank you,

  16. Ruth Vincent says:

    Dear Libby,
    If you’re looking for an urban fantasy, full of “wicked awesome world building” (no vampires or psychics!) I think you would be interested in my award-winning, new adult, urban fantasy THE REDDEST STOLEN CHERRIES.

    Mabily “Mab” Jones is just a twenty-something, over-educated, underemployed New Yorker trying to survive as a private eye’s unpaid intern… or is she? Once a powerful fairy, tricked by the Fairy Queen into getting stuck in human form, Mab is forced to face her changeling past when investigating a missing person case at a modern speakeasy. Obadiah Savage bootlegs fairy Elixir to human customers, thirsting for a magical fix. But when Mab and Obadiah become joint suspects in a crime they didn’t commit, they must travel back to the fairy realm to prove their innocence. When Mab confronts the Fairy Queen and learns the real reason fairies steal human children, she must decide if getting her magical powers back is worth destroying the lives of the humans she has come to love.

    THE REDDEST STOLEN CHERRIES can be read as a stand-alone novel, but was written to have built-in series potential. The manuscript won first place in both the Hudson Valley RWA chapter’s “Hook, Line, and Sinker Contest” for opening hooks, and the Chesapeake RWA’s “Finish the Damn Book Contest” for first and last chapters.

    Thank you so much for this great opportunity!

    Ruth Vincent

    1. Libby Murphy says:

      Hi Ruth!

      I’d love to read this one. Please take a look at the original post above and follow the instructions for submission. Be sure to mention that yours was one I selected for the pitch event in your cover letter!

      Thanks so much!


  17. Deana J Holmes says:

    Dear Libby,

    Blood witch. Rose LeFey has fought the label, and her nature, for six years. Now age twenty, she’s determined to confront the person who exposed her to blood magic: her Aunt Sorcha. So it’s oddly fitting that Rose discovers members of the other magical races imprisoned in her aunt’s basement – all victims of the same, twisted craft Rose is trying to repress. Sorcha has stolen their blood, and is using it to re-ignite an ancient conflict.

    Rose can’t stop Sorcha’s war without help. Overlooking laws demanding distance between the magical races, she enlists the escapees: Dar, an alpha werewolf determined to make Sorcha pay for nearly killing his sister; Sebastian, a vampire who’s spent three-hundred years honing his sense of humor to a finer point than his sword; and Raina, a royal fae seeking a cure for her mother’s mysterious illness. Together they pursue Sorcha to the gates of the fae city, buried deep within the Cascade Mountains. There’s just one large, fur-clad problem — when Rose rescues Dar, she accidentally triggers a devious spell that forges a forbidden mate-bond between them.

    As lust tears at Rose’s hard-earned self-control, Sorcha divines a magical virus that feeds her power with every life it takes. To defeat her, Rose must harness her own deadly talents without letting them consume her. If she fails, she’ll become the weapon her aunt wanted all along. If she succeeds, she’ll break all Sorcha’s spells – and her own heart.

    SOMETHING WICKED is a New Adult Urban Fantasy complete at 98,000 words. While it can stand alone, it is intended as the first book in a series.

    Thank you for your time and consideration.

  18. Karen Clark says:

    Dear Libby,
    Yards Apart is a 99,000-word romantic comedy set in Fort Lauderdale, FL, about a tough, beautiful woman balancing two jobs and a boat restoration who finds her world (and her boat) rocked by a man determined to change his career—and change her life.

    Willow True can rewire an electrical panel, unclog a toilet, and change the oil on a marine diesel engine. She works at a strip club and lives on a sailboat she intends to refit and sell for a hefty profit. The last thing she needs is a distraction, even if it comes in the form of a handsome ex-Army medic who can’t keep his hands off her accident-prone body.

    Kole Zhdanov has a gift for medicine he refuses to use after three tours in Afghanistan, but his rescuer instincts come roaring back when he meets the sexy Willow. He’s stocking up on supplies to handle her next injury and making plans to play doctor . . . in the bedroom.

    Thanks for your consideration,
    Karen Clark

  19. Mary Fahey says:

    A sexy, contemporary romance with an emotional journey in glamorous Irish locations. The 50000 words manuscript is completed with a working title of “Her Replacement Groom”.
    Chloe’s wedding planning is meticulous. Everything is accounted for except the groom absconding. In shocked denial, Chloe proposes all her ex’s until her twenty ninth choice says yes, with a new engagement ring. Unfortunately, she dumped him twice because he endangered her emotional detachment.
    Silas convinces himself to accept for help with his sister’s wedding and closure for himself. He knows the process. A one night stand and then she ditches him. When she is slow to do it this time, he reminds her of his unsuitability.
    While cancelling her dream wedding, secrets and fears emerge. Perhaps they actually do belong together.

  20. C.S. Poe says:

    Hello Libby,

    The SNOW & WINTER SERIES is a gay, mystery-romance series set in New York City, following the adventures of a colorblind antique dealer and a closeted NYPD detective.

    BOOK 1: THE MYSTERY OF NEVERMORE. It’s Christmas, and all Sebastian Snow wants is for his business to make money and to save his floundering relationship with CSU detective, Neil Millett. But when Snow’s Antique Emporium is broken into and a heart is found under the floorboards, Sebastian can’t let the mystery rest.

    He soon finds himself caught up in a murder investigation that echoes the macabre writings of Edgar Allan Poe. To make matters worse, Sebastian’s sleuthing is causing his relationship with Neil to crumble while at the same time he’s falling hard for the lead detective on the case, Calvin Winter.

    Can Sebastian and Calvin work together, despite the mounting danger and sexual tension, to stop a killer before Sebastian becomes the next target?

    70,000+ words.

    Thank you very much.

    C.S. Poe

  21. Marie Dry says:

    Dear Libby

    Thank you for this opportunity to pitch to you.

    Title: Wing Torn
    Genre: Paranormal
    Word Count: 80 000
    Heat Level: Hot

    In Draguur territory, an Angel is attacked by an unseen enemy that plucks out her wings. Now an abomination to her people, only Josiah, the mighty Draguur leader, whose hatred of Angels are legendary, can protect her and help her save the world from evil.

    This is part one in a trilogy about three women who will save the world. An Angel without wings, a vampire without teeth and a witch without magic is prophesied to save the world. The first book is completed and edited, the second halfway written and the third one plotted. Each book can stand alone.

  22. Gina Hagedorn says:

    Dear Libby,

    Thank you so much for this opportunity to pitch my book, The Dear Santa Project – a 58,000 word, emotionally charged and sexy contemporary romance, set in the rugged mountains of Colorado.

    What happens when a substitute teacher, fresh off of a broken engagement, meets a somber young student who inspires her to initiate the Dear Santa Project?
    Despite the holiday season, Isabella Stevens’ student, Tyler Butler, seems to mirror her own feelings of depression. She wants to spark some joy in Tyler, and persuades him to write a letter to Santa, by agreeing to write one herself. Isabella soon learns from Tyler’s brooding uncle Jordan, that Tyler’s wish to Santa is something that can never come true. Isabella feels responsible for creating an impossible situation and agrees to Jordan’s desperate suggestion that she move in with him and Tyler through the holidays – to help find a way to bring Tyler out of his grief and help Jordan ease the disappointment that is sure to come to his nephew on Christmas morning.

    Isabella has one month to prove to Jordan that Tyler belongs with him. Even if it comes at a deep personal cost to her. Will the Dear Santa Project ultimately shatter her own heart completely, or make her wish come true?

    The Dear Santa Project is Book #1 in a Trilogy about three brothers – Jordan Butler, Derek Butler, and Blake Forrester. Book #2 is complete, as well. It is titled Wake Me Up Inside, and is an amnesia trope, involving the second brother in the series, Derek. Book #3, tentatively titled Finding Her Superman, is Blake’s story, and the final book in the series – a reunion romance, dealing with secret identity, and secret baby tropes. It is still a work in progress.

    Thanks again!

    Gina Hagedorn

    1. Libby Murphy says:

      Hi Gina,

      I definitely want to read this one. Please take a look at the post above and follow the instructions to send in your submission. Be sure to mention that you were selected for the pitch event in your query!



      1. Gina Hagedorn says:

        Hi Libby,

        You’ve made my day ~ thank you so much! Will send soon. :)

  23. Jennie Davids says:

    Dear Libby,

    Izzy’s spent twelve years taking crap and proving her worth as a mechanic and now that her mentor and boss is out of commission, it’s her chance to take the spot she’s earned. That is until the bosses estranged son comes in and takes over. The more time she spends with him she realizes there’s more going on behind that cool exterior. Too bad he’s a brainiac, the bosses son, and she doesn’t do relationships.

    It might have taken a heart attack for it to happen, but Alex finally has the opportunity to show his father that just because he’s not a jock, he’s not a failure. Alex never expected taking over to be easy, but he was unprepared for Izzy. Her boldness and determination challenge and confound him. Now in between dealing with mutiny from the mechanics and an MIA partner, Alex needs to show Izzy the man behind the graph charts.

    Can Alex convince Izzy that the two of them together add up to a really good time?

    The first in a series, THE SUM OF IT ALL is a 93,000 word single title contemporary.

    Thank you,
    Jennie Davids

  24. Juanita Margot Critch says:

    Bump & Grind

    Bump & Grind is a humourous, but sultry and sexy story set in St. John’s, Newfoundland. It follows our heroine Erica Hardin, a feisty barista/burlesque dancer who craves more adventure and excitement in her somewhat dull, coffee-pouring life. She gets all that and more when Peter Swanson walks into her café. Peter is a cop, part of an off-the-books team trained to fight the scourge of organized crime.

    Their path’s cross when rumors of mobsters associating in the Brewed Moon café reach Peter, sending him and his team into action investigating everyone who works there. Erica sees the element of danger she’s been craving in Peter and his sinfully-good looks, but the police can’t look past her luscious curves and wily red-lipped smile to see anything but a potential criminal.

    Despite the circumstances, neither Erica nor Peter can escape the instant attraction they feel, and before they know it, their steamy, forbidden affair is embroiled in a sinister plot perpetrated by Irish mob kingpin, Dylan O’Connell. Soon Erica finds herself in more danger than she anticipated, and she must rely on her own wits to survive, while Peter has races against time to stop O’Connell before he makes his evil plans a reality.

    High in humour, suspense and, of course, heat, Bump & Grind, at 51,200 words, is the first book in a planned four-part series that surrounds the ladies of the Brewed Moon Café and the men of a highly specialized crime-fighting team.

    Thank you for your consideration.
    Juanita Margot Critch


    1. Libby Murphy says:

      Hi Juanita,

      This looks interesting, and I’d like to read it! Please take a look at the post above for instructions to submit your book. Be sure to mention that yours was selected from this pitch event, too!



  25. R. Lynn Dewitt says:

    Dear Libby,
    Thanks so much for this opportunity!I entered last years SYTYCW Comp and have tweaked my entry from last year. I would love any input you have!
    Title: Sophie’s Hart
    Genre: Romance
    Word Count: 69,500 (roughly)

    Hart Davenport never expected the family curse to catch up to him! He wasn’t superstitious and he didn’t have time to pretend that life was a fairy-tale. He had his bakery and his customers to keep him happy. Everything was perfect…until he laid eyes on Sophie Thatcher.
    Sophie was pregnant, abandoned, and miserable. Stuck in an unfamiliar town on the coast of Mississippi, she has nowhere to turn. Fear clawed at her heart as she tried to figure out a way to get back home. She had never been so lost or alone…and then she finds Hart!
    He brings her peace and encourages her when all she wants to do is give up. Together they search for her missing husband as each of them keeps secrets buried deep inside. Hart is positive he will never be able to give Sophie up and she is desperate to discover what happened to the man she had married only a year before.
    In Hart, Sophie finds a protector and a friend and the fear she holds close evaporates as they slowly fall in love.

    Thank you so much for this fun contest!
    R. Lynn Dewitt

  26. Janet Burnett says:


    Gina struggled to free herself from the lies and deceit of her past. Her mother and stepfather turned her tragic prediction into a money making enterprise, portraying her as a child psychic and selling her services to wealthy marks eager to connect to lost love ones. Since then, she’s recreated herself, hiding her painful past behind a new name and struggling to make a new life.

    Zack has a problem. His mother has fallen into the clutches of a slick conman, one who not only promises contact with her late husband, but also romances the widow and worms his way into her life. Unable to convince her of the deceit himself, Zack tracks down the young psychic his mother swore by when his father first passed away, hoping to fight fire with fire to save his mother.

    When Zack shows up on Gina’s doorstep, threatening to reveal her past to local media and her employers, she has no choice but to return to the life she’d tried so hard to repress. Pulled into a conman’s viscous plans, Gina struggles to help a woman who was one of the few bright spots of her childhood. Zack’s contempt turns into something more, an attraction she can’t deny but can’t trust. As they move closer physically, unexplained events have her questioning his motives, and coming to terms with the specters of her past.

    Thank you for this opportunity to pitch this story.

    Janet Burnett

  27. Janet Burnett says:


    Lucy’s job as a medical transcription editor keeps food on the table, pays the rent, and allows her to work at home, but offers little excitement. Reviewing and editing computer-generated text of physician’s dictation, she often daydreams about the patients and their lifestyles. It was a harmless pastime, until one patient’s injuries and drive to recover pull at her. Reviewing pages of text on his extensive injuries, and his struggles to heal and recover, she was compelled to reach out in a small way, sending a card of encouragement to the broken man.

    Zane escaped the stress and dissatisfaction of his life by enjoying a weekend rock climbing. When a suspicious equipment failure lands him in the hospital fighting to regain his mobility, he realizes how empty his life is when his only visitors are board members worried about the impact of his accident on the proposed sale of his company. A gag order is put in effect, nonetheless a leak is revealed in the shape of a generic get-well card.

    As his recovery progresses and Zane becomes more aware of the gaps in his life, more cards arrive. Zane becomes obsessed with learning the identity of the sender, to the point where his goal after recovery is to track down the sender and discover her secret agenda.

    Meeting her, he finds she’s nothing like he expected, but everything he’d secretly hoped for. With a gossip reporter sniffing around about his injury, he suspects she’s the source of the leak about his condition. Fighting his attraction to her, he coerces her into taking a job near him so he can keep a watch on her, convincing himself it’s to give her more rope to hang herself with, not admitting he can’t let her go.

    After a second freak accident, Zane realizes he’s become someone’s target and he’s dragged Lucy into their sites as well. The two must learn to trust each other as they work together to uncover his attacker before he succeeds in killing Zane.

    Thanks again for this opportunity to pitch a story. Good luck with your new career! From where I sit, you’re already doing a great job!

    Janet Burnett

  28. Rebecca Hart says:

    Dear Libby:

    Congratulations on the new position and best of luck finding some gems during this pitch opportunity.

    Twenty-year-old widow, Ana McShay once believed in the fairy tales her father read to her from his old storybook, but not anymore. The struggle to survive Ireland’s great potato famine and the threat of losing her young son to fever have destroyed any faith she had in a happily ever after.

    But, when Ana finds herself trapped in Machenwood’s fairy tale reality, she’s forced to accept the characters she believed to be fiction not only exist, one may hold the key to helping Ana save her little boy, and rescue a still cursed Sleeping Beauty.

    If Machenwood’s Goddesses will let them.

    MACHENWOOD is a New Adult Fantasy (Fairy Tale Mash-up) complete at 83,600 words and the introduction to a planned series of at least three novels (The Machenwood Chronicles).

    1. Libby Murphy says:

      Hi Rebecca,

      Thank you! I’d love to take a look at this one. Take a look at the original post for instructions on sending in your submission, and be sure to mention in your query that you were selected from this pitch event.

      Many thanks,

      1. Rebecca Hart says:

        Woohoo! You just made my Friday!

        Thank you for the opportunity.

  29. Sandra Panting says:

    Dear Ms. Murphy,

    Twenty-two-year-old Shelby Randall is struck down by a wayward delivery van on her way to the Miss Sunflower pageant and meets up with ex-boyfriend, Troy Jefferies, in the Afterlife. It’s a good thing they’re both dead or they would probably kill each other.

    Shelby hadn’t been all that into following the rules in her everyday life, and she’s discovering that the Afterlife isn’t much better. Who would have thought that ghosts have rules and traditions, and even resumes? And Troy doesn’t help matters. He’s still Mr. Perfect. All the other ghosts of their particular haunt love him, and she’s once again left to struggle about things like acceptable haunting procedure, and learning the ropes of the Temporary Haunt Program – ghosts filling in for other ghosts so they can take vacations or visit their relatives in Spokane.

    Shelby had just wanted to win the Miss Sunflower pageant like her mom and her grandmother, and now her future is gone and she’s stuck with Troy. Unfortunately the guy is even good at being dead. But when a typical haunting assignment goes awry when an evil ghost hunter shows up, Shelby and Troy go on the run. They have to protect themselves and their haunt because if the ghost hunter catches them, he will not only destroy them but everyone they care about.

    Maybe there are worse things than being dead, or being struck with Troy. But can Shelby and Troy evade capture long enough to see if their relationship can survive the challenges of the Afterlife?

    For Better or Worse is 61,000 paranormal romance.

    Thank you for your time.

    Sandra Panting

    1. Libby Murphy says:

      Hi Sandra!

      I’d like to take a look at this book! Please take a peek at the instructions in the original post above and send your book to me. Be sure to mention that it was selected from this pitch event.

      Thank you!


      1. Sandra Panting says:

        Thank you so much for your interest! However I’ve recently been contacted by another publisher about this same story, and I’d like to hear what they have to say before submitting it elsewhere. I understand your feedback opportunity is only for those subs received by June 15th, and I certainly don’t expect you to make an exception just for me.

        Again thank you for this opportunity. :)

  30. Libby Murphy says:

    Just wanted to let you all know that I’m having the best time reading your pitches! Thank you for making this so much fun!


    1. Yvonne Rediger says:

      I am too, lots of good writing there!

  31. Giora says:

    Twenty-year-old Chinese woman wants to be a famous author but her writing is rejected. When she gives up on her dream, a young American woman helps her to become a worldwide famous author, but the Chinese woman doesn’t know. Many search to find her, especially the criminals mentioned in the book.
    A contemporary commercial Chinese-American novel set mostly in China, and the rest in NYC. Some erotica, but more romantic than sexy. Easy to make it more sexy. Lots of adventures, including the Chinese woman getting married and giving birth to her daughter. Complete at 79,000 words. Thanks, Libby, for reading. Giora

  32. Sandra Panting says:

    Dear Ms. Murphy,

    Scarecrow lore teaches the modern day Scarecrow about wisdom, honor and loyalty, but Jason, who struggles to live up to his father’s reputation, longs for a more fulfilling way of life and for true love.

    By day he’s a scarecrow, literally a scarecrow, by night he and his clan roam the kingdom looking to do good deeds. All of his life Jason had been judged by the quality of his deeds and how much impact his efforts have had on island life. His father had worked his way up the ranks of the Scarecrow Coalition until his capture and presumed death six years ago. Jason feels the pressure to follow in his father‘s footsteps, but the Scarecrow strict code of conduct leaves little room for error. And then Jason does the unthinkable and falls for a human. Humans have no idea about the role Scarecrows play in the kingdom, and Jason is forbidden to reveal his true identity.

    With her grandfather’s health failing, Tina is struggling to keep the family bar running. Truthfully Tina has no desire to run a bar. She prefers fashion design, but she can’t let her family down. And then there’s Jason. There’s something happening between them, and he keeps coming back, but his mysterious behavior is worrying. What’s he hiding?

    As Jason struggles to fulfill his Scarecrow duties and to keep his true form a secret, he becomes more and more caught up in Tina’s world and he longs to stay there. But the truth will destroy his reputation among his fellow Scarecrows, and cost him what might likely be his only opportunity to find his father.

    By The Light Of The Moon is a 64,000 word paranormal romance.

    Thank you for your time.

    Sandra Panting

  33. Judy Coates says:

    Two Saturday Nights in Vegas

    Dear Ms. Murphy

    Two Saturday Nights in Vegas is approximately a 36000 word contemporary romance manuscript. This is a love story, not overtly sexy, but enough to keep the reader interested.

    What Librarian Melissa Harding anticipated was a fun filled long weekend in Vegas with her three bridesmaids before her wedding to up and coming Politian Brad Adams.
    What she got was waking up married to Devon Granger, a complete stranger, an unwelcome pregnancy, no memory of the night before, and a life filled with new complications.
    Her ex-fiancé Brad Adams doesn’t take kindly to the news that she is married and pregnant by a complete stranger and assaults her. To get away from his unwanted attention Melissa moves to the mountains to stay with her brother Denny and his family until her baby is born.
    An unexpected avalanche damages Denny’s ski hill and, unknown to Melissa, her husband Devon Grangers telecommunications firm is called into make the repairs. Also she doesn’t know that Devon and Denny are old friends from college.
    Melissa must choose – should she seek an annulment and Devon’s offer of support until the baby is of age or try to make a success of her marriage with Devon? To complicate matters Melissa and Devon are both unwilling to admit they are falling in love with each other.

    Thank you in advance for considering my story.

    Yours truly,

    Judy Coates
    writing as J. L. Coates

  34. Gemma Brocato says:

    Hi Libby,
    Congratulations on the new position. And thanks for taking the time to offer this pitching opportunity.

    RUNNING FROM ROMEO is a 94,000 word completed work of Romantic Suspense.
    Ana McLean has achieved the type of success she’s only ever dreamed of as a marketing and event planning maven. Her three-year-old company has attracted the attention of businesses and media outlets in Chicago, including Duncan Burnett, who is expanding his security firm into residential alarm systems. Ana’s rise to success has also attracted the attention of a stalker who fancies himself Romeo to her Juliet.
    Ana and Duncan get off on the wrong foot, especially when he showed up to one of her black-tie events in jeans and hiking boots. But the flying sparks ignites a searing hot flame of passion between them. As the danger from Romeo escalates, so does the chemistry between them.
    Surrounded by a strong supporting cast of unflappable friends and associates, Ana and Duncan face the threat with confidence, grace, humor and bravery and discover love along the way. Their attraction and affection grows along with the danger, creating an emotionally tense and highly passionate journey.
    Content Warning: strong characters, spicy content and a villain whose demise is worthy of a Shakespearean tragedy.

  35. Andie says:

    Title: Virgin@23
    Genre: Contemporary Romantic Comedy
    42,000 words

    In the five years since she last saw Luca, spitfire Fran has transformed herself from the fat girl with the chip on her shoulder, to the slim, sassy, successful chef with the world at her feet.

    That’s the way she’s telling it anyway.

    After a damning review which gets her fired, and landing a right hook on her randy landlord’s nose which gets her evicted, Fran is low on options if she wants to give her sister the mind-blowing wedding reception she promised, and keep a firm grip on her pride.

    Her only hope is to team up with Luca, once Fran’s high school best friend and unrequited crush, now smoking hot culinary star.

    Fran may have started out as the convenient ‘Wrong Girl’ that would get Luca’s overbearing family, and their infinite trail of ‘Right Girls’ off his back, but he soon realises just how perfect she is. However before he can convince Fran that he is worthy of her future, he must make her see that he is worthy of being her first.

  36. Andie says:

    Dear Libby,

    I hit ‘submit’ before adding this: Thank you so much for this amazing opportunity, and huge congratulations on your new position!


  37. Amy Ayers says:

    Hi Libby,

    Cassie doesn’t let just anyone into her quiet life as the owner of a bed & breakfast in small town Calista Bay. But when circumstances cause her to fall -literally- into the arms of sexy stranger Brace,she can’t deny their chemistry. Brace is passing through town on his own journey to forget the tragic fire that took the life of his fellow firefighter and best friend, a death he feels responsible for. The two collide and their shameless flirting leads to a sexy affair that quickly develops into much more. If they want a future together, they have to overcome long distance, jealous exes and even the dangerous men responsible for the horrific fire who are intent on scaring Brace out of testifying and putting them behind bars.

    Her Handy Man is a sexy, fun romance of about 60,000 words that includes elements of suspense designed to challenge our hero and heroine while bringing the reader along for the ride. I also have outlines for two more books chronicling Brace’s two firefighter brothers and their unique quests for lasting love.

    Thank you for your consideration and good luck on your aquisitions.

    Sincerely, Amy Ayers

  38. Hannah C says:

    Home is 59000 word stand alone romantic comedy.

    Amy and Sunny first fell in love when they were sixteen, only to be separated when Sunny’s dad caught them in the act and sent his son back to China.

    Ten years later they bump into each other, but the path back to getting back together is bumpy. Obstacles include their best friend pulling a disappearing act, parents with pot laced chocolate brownies, Chewbacca costumes, kilts, and a birth which threatens to de-rail their attempts to get engaged.

    Many thanks for this opportunity to pitch to you. Wishing you all the best in your new role.

  39. Jenny Fox says:

    Hi Libby,

    SWEET SEDUCTION IN SANTA BARBARA is a sexy contemporary romance novel with humor complete at 55,000 words. The novel is about a woman who is reunited with her unrequited college crush.

    Cupcake artist by night, admissions counselor by day, Jayma Summers is heartbroken when her cheating boyfriend runs off with her roommate, leaving her to cover the full rent. She is shocked that her new boss is her former professor Trevor Whitman who still stars in her toe-curling nighttime fantasies. The strict mandate that forbids interoffice dating and Jayma’s spiteful coworker makes the new dean unattainable. Jayma tries to suppress her rekindled passion for him by throwing herself into baking her decadent creations and updating her dessert blog, but soon finds that she wants to frost something other than cupcakes and it starts with a capital T.

    When fearless shark biologist Trevor Whitman returns from his award-winning film tour to the university, he finds himself face-to-face with Miss Jayma Summers. And he remembers her all right. On the tails of a college scandal, she is off limits, but the more he tries to resist the undeniable urge to pursue her, the more he wants to dip her in honey and have a taste. One sultry summer night, Jayma is in danger and he rushes to her aid. Life as he knows it will never be the same. For the first time, Trevor is compelled to reveal his secret past to her. His career is on the line, but he finds it hard to resist the illicit temptation of the curvy brunette.

    I have submitted this to Blaze earlier this week, if that’s all right.

    Thank you,


    1. Libby Murphy says:

      Hi Jenny,
      Carina can’t accept simultaneous submissions if you’ve already submitted to another Harlequin imprint. However, we do accept simultaneous submissions if you’ve sent it to other publishers. If this project isn’t accepted by Blaze you are welcome to submit to Carina later, though!
      Thank you!

      1. Jenny Fox says:

        Thanks, Libby!


  40. Abbey MacMunn says:

    Hi Libby

    Her Immortal Curse is a contemporary paranormal romance set in rural southern England.
    Word count: 54,000
    Heat level: Hot
    Book one of a planned series.

    An inquisitive antique dealer finds a brooch belonging to her birth mother and discovers she’s a hybrid—the unique and revered offspring of an immortal mother and mortal father.
    Enter the immortal guardian of the hybrid, a drop dead gorgeous guy who is duty bound to protect her.
    The connection between them is instantaneous and sexual tension sizzles at every opportunity, but being a hybrid comes with a curse—skin to skin contact with an immortal proves to have near fatal consequences.
    They can’t touch. They can’t kiss. They can’t release their pent-up desires…
    But just when they think they’ve found a magical way around the curse, both guardian and hybrid are betrayed by a trusted friend who kidnaps her and threatens to drain her of her hybrid blood.

    Thanks for your time and consideration,


  41. Merryn Dexter says:

    Hi Libby

    I would like to offer my story ‘Courting Order’ for your consideration. It is a contemporary romance (just under 75,000 words) about second chances and is Book One of an intended trilogy under the heading Haven House.

    Eunomia (Mia) Sutherland is a woman in limbo. Having lost the love of her young life two years previously to a drunk driver, she hid herself away from the world in the ramshackle ruin of Haven House. Bought on a whim with a vague plan to turn the property into a guest house, Mia is fighting an uphill battle to bring the house back to life.

    Fisher Bennett is a man in crisis. He’s got the world at his feet, fame, fortune, and critical acclaim for his photography. Everyone tells him he should be having the time of his life, but he’s not. His muse is gone, his life is fake and he hates himself and everyone around him.

    An impulsive train journey and an interfering but well-meaning friend brings Fisher to Mia’s door. She doesn’t want him there but she recognises a soul in pain and she allows him to stay. For one week.

    Hard work, good food and a burgeoning friendship with Mia are just what Fisher needs. The attraction between them is ignored and then ignited, but Fisher backs off afraid he is taking advantage.

    Mia doesn’t want to feel, she’s grown used to being numb, keeping herself protected by holding the world at arm’s length. Fisher makes her feel, sparks a passion so deep it scares her but she can’t resist forever.

    As they begin to restore the house together and explore new dreams, so they begin to heal and grow together and a bright future seems tantalisingly within reach.

    A family crisis calls Mia away where she must face the pain of her difficult upbringing, her former in-laws and a beloved sister in trouble. Can she make peace with her past and find a way forward with Fisher or will past and present secrets prove too much to conquer?

    A fraudulent act forces Fisher back into the life that he hates. Trying to shield Mia, he lies to her but is soon caught out. Will she forgive him and will Fisher trust her enough to help him lay his demons to rest?

    Thank you for your time and the opportunity to pitch for you. I wish you every success in your new venture and good luck to everyone who is pitching today.

    Merryn Dexter

  42. Elizabeth Delafield says:

    Hi Libby,

    Thank you for this wonderful opportunity!

    The Magician’s Heir is an 80,000 word fantasy with strong romantic elements. Elena Alden, a young woman overshadowed by her talented elder brother, discovers their recently deceased father has left her a key and papers to a house in Hungary. But when she arrives at the Forest Rose, she activates a birthright she never knew was hers—the powers and legacy of a magician’s bloodline that extends back to Alexander the Great.

    Marked for death by rival magicians and surrounded by people she cannot trust, Elena is forced to fight for survival as she delves into the mystery of her own origins and her father’s secrets. Her shadowy guardian, Corvinus, teaches her magic but pursues his own questionable goals that may ultimately destroy the growing bond between them. The closer Elena comes to answers, the more dangerous her world becomes, and the fulcrum of the mystery that surrounds her may only be resolved in the catacombs of Istanbul.

    Thank you for your consideration,

  43. Cassandra L Shaw says:

    Hi Libby, Congratulations of your new position.

    Dancing with Lace 85000 word Single Title Contemporary Romance. (
    Book 1 of the Cape Low, Material Girl series.)

    Cape Low is home to Lace’s most tragic memories but she’s returned to forge her future. On a walk to she discovers a man hanging over a cliff by a single loop of rope. The problem is, saving someone isn’t on Lace’s know how list.
    But with no one else to help she must face, fight, and overcome her fear of heights. When she bravely peers over the cliff’s edge to assess their problem her nerves are taken beyond their limit. She vomits and watches in horror as her morning coffee and blueberry muffin splashes down the man’s leg and torso.
    A sure sign of heroism.
    The man she saved is Joel. Joel’s a plumber, all round nice guy, but his wicked smile and nick-name of Dead Heart screams, player. Unable to commit to any woman he has a very long string of ‘friends’ in his past.

    Joel wants the elusive magical forever with a woman but his heart just never beat stronger for any one particular female. Lace draws him right from the start and a girl willing to help someone when her fear is so great tells him she’s not only brave but special. If only his heart could love.

    Joel ignites bombs of lust in Lace so she decides to play the player. With both of them appearing to be chasing a friends with benefits relationship they start playing the game but neither seems to know the rules.

    And rules they discover, sometimes backfire.

  44. Kristi Rose says:

    If she hadn’t been packing heat, 24-year-old Josie Woodmere would never have taken a ride from straight-laced Brinn McRae. It beats being stranded on the side of the road. Josie never expected she’d be attracted to a stiff like Brinn and she certainly didn’t anticipate moving to Daytona Beach, his hometown, or that she’d end up working for him. Fate has a twisted sense of humor.

    Two years ago, Josie knew her life wasn’t working. Her handsome fiancée and recently earned law degree weren’t doing it for her. She ditched it all, dead set against the two kids, missionary position, and the mini-van life, and set out to find herself. She’s been rootless ever since.

    Having grown up hard and fast, Flight Instructor Brinn McRae has carefully mapped out his life. For him success equals owning his own business and creating the home he never had, sweet wife included. He’s determined to let nothing dive bomb his plans. Certainly not a flighty, addicted to henna, potty-mouthed raven-haired beauty that turns him on simply by walking into the room.

    Their powerful chemistry is a distraction neither of them wants. Hoping they can burn it off and move on, Josie and Brinn agree to a no-strings attached arrangement. But pillow talk leads to love and well-planned goals go astray when a hurricane hits Daytona and everything Brinn’s worked toward gets washed away. For Josie, skipping town has lost its appeal; she’s ready to put down roots and must prove to Brinn she not the chaos he fears.

    THE GIRL HE NEEDS is a Contemporary Adult Romance and is complete at 96000 words. This book is a blend of Jill Shalvis’-Animal Magnetism Series and Cora Carmack’s-Losing It Series.
    A marketing plan for this book is available upon request.

    1. Kristi Rose says:

      Hi Libby,
      Excuse my lack of manners. I wanted to say thanks for this opportunity and may you have great success building your list.

      1. Libby Murphy says:

        Hi Kristi!

        No worries at all, and thank you :)

        I’d like to take a look at this one. Just take a look at the original post above for instructions to send in your book. Don’t forget to mention it’s part of this pitch event!

        Thank you!


  45. Carrie Zimmerman says:

    Hi Libby,

    THE BOY NEXT DOOR is a sexy contemporary romance about a couple who takes the leap from friends to lovers.

    Charlotte Devon always dreamed of living in Paris and designing for a famous fashion house. After living abroad for 10 years the dream has started to lose its appeal and finding her boyfriend in bed with another woman is the final straw. Heartbroken and homesick, Charlotte returns to her hometown of Bliss, Texas hoping the comfort of old friends and familiar surrounds will be just what she needs. The last thing on Charlotte’s mind is finding romance in Bliss, but Ben Rowland has waited 10 years for her to come home and he isn’t going to wait 10 more minutes to make her his.

    Thank you for this opportunity!

  46. Jenny C says:

    Hi Libby!

    Oh Captain is a 60,000-word contemporary sports romance novel and the first of what is planned to be a hockey romance series about the players on the Detroit Combustion.

    Summer Stone a best-selling author and New York City socialite who is sick of the city. She’s determined to live somewhere different but places like London or Los Angeles just seem like they would be more of the same. Then she hears about an old building being renovated in Detroit and decides an unexpected move to the blue-collar town would be the perfect place to start over and hopefully inspire her to write.

    Jordan King is known as the most eligible bachelor in the Motor City, and now he’s just been named the captain of the legendary Detroit Combustion. But a new-found sense of personal responsibility comes with the position, and Jordan is determined to change his reputation as a partying ladies’ man and be the leader that his team needs.

    That’s when he meets Summer, a media darling who would draw more attention to him, which he doesn’t want. It’s a relationship Summer isn’t sure either after having her heart broken in college by a hockey player who is now the league’s biggest pest. They can try and keep their budding romance away from prying eyes, but even in Detroit, the truth has a way of being exposed.

    Thanks for your consideration!


  47. Christina says:

    Dear Libby:

    Fox shapeshifter Alexia Riviera was the youngest to graduate from Scorpio, the galaxy’s top school for spies and assassins, but that doesn’t mean she’s good at her job. Her new assignment, to assassinate the high ranking Imperial, Daryl Cook, is just what she needs to prove she isn’t a failure and that she’s worthy of the name Scorpio. Too bad Scorpio’s not calling the shots. She just has to figure out who is. If she fails, she’ll be sentenced to life on the planet-wide penal colony and her secret crush, Prince Natsuke Leoni, will end up on the Scorpio hit list for helping her.

    The Fox’s Mask is a 110,000-word science fiction novel with romantic and paranormal elements.

    Thank you for this pitch opportunity.


  48. Beth Batoha says:

    In Look The Other Way, Sheree Ryan longs for some excitement in her life. She is also mad because her boyfriend, Keith Spencer, has disappeared yet again. She knows Keith is definitely hiding something and she is determined to find out what it is. When she discovers he is attending a Medieval Faire instead of on a business trip, she does what any 21st century woman would do – she follows him.
    Ex-art thief Keith Spencer’s deal to work undercover for Interpol is almost over; if he recovers the stolen Rousseau jewels, he gains a full pardon. He also knows that helping his partner on this case may cost him that pardon. The last thing he needs now is his girlfriend showing up, especially when he has never told her his real name or what he actually is.
    Sheree and Keith are thrown into a dizzying mix of jousting and black market jewels, stolen Nazi treasure and dashing cavaliers, fortune telling, love potions, and knights in shining armor. For Sheree, it is a world of dangerous high stakes espionage where nothing and no one, including Keith, is what they seem, and where the only person she can really trust is herself. For Keith, it is a world in which he must redeem himself and still help his friend and where he must decide if protecting Sheree means walking away from the woman he loves.
    For both of them, it is a world where the truth is far from clear; a world where they must discern the subtle difference between what is right and what is the right thing to do, and when it is best simply to look the other way.

  49. Sunni says:

    Hi Libby,

    #JUSTSAYIN’ is a 55,500 word sexy contemporary romance.

    ‘No Strings. No expectations. Leads to complications #Justsayin’

    Ava Midel anonymously tweets her no-strings sex advice while hoping to write a book empowering women to take control of their sex lives. She follows her own rules.

    Until she meets Grant.

    No longer a naïve small-town boy, Grant Mitchell wants the impossible. Find a woman who doesn’t want any kind of commitment so he won’t have to risk his heart again.

    Until he meets Ava.

    Sex between them sizzles and Grant wants more—much more. But they’ve already agreed to no expectations. Can he tape his heart back together in time to stop Ava from finding another lover?

    Thank you for reading our pitches.

  50. Allison B. Hanson says:

    Hi Libby, Living Dead Girl is a 76,000 word completed paranormal/mystery.

    While finishing up his residency for med school in New Orleans Grant stumbles across the exotic Jemaé Beauvais and is struck. Leery of getting in a relationship with a tourist, Jem tries to put him off, but once he weasels his way into her heart she’s his.

    When he’s ready to move back home to Kentucky and his wealthy family he asks her to come with him. Despite her reluctance to move, she gives in and soon she’s feeling uncomfortable and unwelcome.

    Grant never expected to come home from his new job to find her in their bathtub with her wrists cut.

    Angry at her for leaving him, as well as himself for not seeing the signs, he comes across her books on voodoo and had a dark idea. Armed with her spiritual customs and his medical degree he decides to attempt the unthinkable.

    Bring her back from the dead.

    He didn’t really expect it to work. He was distraught and hurt, but when she starts breathing and opens her eyes he gets to ask the question he desperately needs the answer to. Why?

    Jem’s memory is a little off since she’s come back, but one thing she knows is that she never planned to kill herself.

    Now the two must find a killer while the victim is still walking around alive.

    Thanks so much!

  51. Celloise says:

    Afternoon, Libby,

    Bad Bitch is a contemporary romance of 60k words.

    Evangeline Pallida is one of the most sought after white collar criminal defense attorneys in New York. She has built her influential firm, Pallida & Associates, with the dirty money of her patrons. When a new client seeks her out, cash in hand, she takes him on, intending to make his ill-gotten gains her own. Hailing from New Orleans, he brings trouble and Assistant U.S. Attorney Lincoln Granade with him.

    Lincoln bears the scars of a violent past but has changed his ways and pursued a career of law and order. When he gets the chance to go head to head with the “bad bitch,” it’s a challenge he can’t pass up. But he soon discovers Evan is unlike any opponent — or woman — he’s ever known.

    As Lincoln and Evan clash, his past unravels and her present is threatened. Will they be able to overcome their demons and maintain the tenuous link they’ve forged?

  52. Elana Johnson/Nichole Giles says:

    Dear Libby,

    Thanks so much for this pitching opportunity!

    Budding journalism student, Lillian Olsen, doesn’t want to blow her first assignment—interview a swimmer on the undefeated team at Drexel University—but well, she doesn’t exactly hang out with the jockular type. And she definitely doesn’t go near swimming pools, having nearly drowned as a child.

    An Olympic favorite to win four gold medals, Taylor Lockwood got injured before he could even leave the starting block. Now, two years later, he doesn’t do interviews, even when the journalist wields a pen that can write upside down and has mesmerizing brown eyes. He’s not interested in dredging up that past, as it only reminds him that his girlfriend left him for another athlete.

    But he answers Lilly’s questions and has a hard time leaving when the interview is over. Once she has his number, he rushes off, accidentally taking her pen with him. A mistake? Maybe. Maybe not.

    She doesn’t fit in Taylor’s adrenaline-filled world of motocross, skydiving, and zip-lining. He stands out at the ballet and has never stayed home on a Sunday afternoon to watch movies.

    She’ll have to figure out how to live more dangerously to be with him—including getting in the swimming pool—and he’ll have to decide what’s more important: the rush he gets from jumping out of an airplane or the buzz he gets from kissing Lilly. She has more to lose than a favorite pen, and he has more to lose than his Olympic aspirations; they could both lose their hearts.

    GOING UNDER is a new adult contemporary romance and is complete at 60,000 words.

    Thanks again!

    Elana Johnson and Nichole Giles

    1. Libby Murphy says:

      Hi Elana and Nichole,

      This looks like fun. Please send your manuscript to me using the instructions above, and don’t forget to mention in your query that it was part of this event.

      Thank you!


    2. Elana Johnson/Nichole Giles says:

      Yay! Thank you, Libby! We’ll be sending this in soon. :)

  53. Vanessa Guadiana says:

    Scott Quick gets his way as a leader in the financial industry and in love. Days before the tycoon’s wedding to Latin beauty Emma Montez, he ends the volatile affair he’s kept from her. But not before his rage-filled lover barges into Emma’s bridal suite, declaring Scott’s love for her. Worse, she makes her point with a loaded gun.

    With Scott and Emma’s romance in pieces and a wedding gown covered in blood, their mutual best friend Kevin is torn over whose side to take. More so, he’s conflicted: he’s been madly in love with Emma for years and regrets pushing his own feelings aside to let Scott pursue her in the first place. Narrowly escaping death, Emma couldn’t hate her
    cheating fiancé more, which gives Kevin the perfect opportunity to fix his mistakes and take away the only thing Scott can’t buy. Only, they underestimate Scott’s persistence: it got him to the top of his career, and now he’s going to use it to wage an all out war. When emotions run high and truths are uncovered, the trio must figure out what is right between love and loyalty. The wrong decision could cost them more than they are willing to lose.

    The First Breath You Take After You Give Up is a 62,151 word dramatic romance novel.

  54. Kathryn Long says:

    Hi Libby! Thanks for doing this. You are awesomely wonderful :-)

    Thirty-year-old Sarah Mackenzie never thought she’d literally stumble upon a body – worse yet, she never imagined this murder victim would be a friend who was thought to already be dead.

    Research assistant and trivia geek, Sarah (Mac) Mackenzie visits Cornplanter Cemetery to collect data for her uncle’s latest writing project on local Native Americans. She discovers the body of a man lying in a freshly dug grave. He looks familiar, a close friend and romantic interest from her past. Only he died tragically ten years ago in a fire. When physical evidence belonging to Sarah is found next to the body, the rather incompetent, too impulsive sheriff is quick to judge and suspect her of murder. Sarah realizes she will need to find answers about the mysterious corpse to prove her innocence.

    The stakes mount after the murder victim is confirmed to be Sarah’s friend. Of course, the unsavory details of her past relationship and breakup with him convinces the sheriff of her motive to kill. When her best friend, Nash Redwing, shows his interest in Sarah has developed romantically, Sarah struggles to free herself from the guilt of past mistakes so she can open up to love again. However, first, she needs to uncover answers about her friend’s death and his puzzling disappearance years ago. Confronted by mysteries from the past as well as the present, Sarah discovers their common link. The treacherous journey leads her into the Seneca world where she must confront the killer, Grave Maker, and stop him before he murders again.

    GRAVE MAKER BLUES is a contemporary mystery/amateur sleuth, with romantic elements complete at 72,000 words, which is a stand-alone with series potential. It has the Native American flair of a Tony Hillerman/Ann Hillerman novel and a cozy, rustic, small town atmosphere with warm, friendly characters.

    Sincerely thanks for your time and consideration.

    Kathryn Long

  55. Kate Evangelista says:

    Hi, Libby!

    It takes a man to mend Milo’s broken heart after being mercilessly dumped by his fiancée on Valentine’s Day. If Sylvia Day and The Devil Wears Prada had a gay lovechild, it would be Take Me. Kazuhiko Yukifumi is a handsome Japanese businessman who claims Milo McLaren for himself. Unfortunately for the mysterious blue-eyed Kaz, Milo’s rising career in fashion as the personal assistant to Rebel magazine’s editor-in-chief takes precedence over romance, no matter the sensual delights he is promised. What Milo soon realizes is that Kaz is not a man who takes no for an answer.

    When he finally has Milo where he wants him, enter his brother, Haruhiko, who reminds Kaz of the responsibilities he ran away from. Being the heir to a yakuza empire is no joke. Add to that a botched engagement to the daughter of a rival clan. Milo is caught in the crossfire. So much drama so little time. His love for Kaz is tested at every turn until eventually hot sex and the vow of a future together just does not seem enough to keep him from letting go.

    Take Me is 90,000 words of pure temptation filled with hot guys and fashion mixed with a touch of danger and a sprinkling of humor. The full manuscript is available should you be interested in reading it. Thank you so much for your time. I look forward to your response.

    Kate Evangelista

    1. Libby Murphy says:

      Hi Kate!

      I want to read this one! Please take a look at the original post above for instructions to submit, and be sure to mention that it was part of this pitch event.

      Thank you!


      1. Kate Evangelista says:

        Thank you, Libby!

  56. Jennifer Willis says:

    Hi Libby,

    Dawn’s past abusive relationship may have her jumping at dark shadows and strange noises, but it never took away her will to fight for what she desired most.

    Last Chance for Love is my completed (fairly steamy) contemporary romance manuscript of 123,000 words that is set in modern day South Carolina.

    Dawn let the only man she had ever loved slip through her fingers due to the chilling threats made by her ex-boyfriend. After several years had gone by without any sign of her abuser, Dawn decided to throw caution to the wind and chase Kevin halfway across the continent to fight for a place in his heart. What she found when she got there was not exactly what she had dreamed of. Kevin had changed from the fun-loving, carefree young man that she had fallen in love with to a possessive and overbearing guy with the inability to trust.

    Kevin was an extremely successful petroleum engineer and entrepreneur on the outside, but on the inside, he was still a small town boy from Oklahoma. He had more money than he knew what to do with, but his heart ached for more, and there was only one person that could fill that void. When the stars aligned bringing Dawn back into his life, he became fixated on ensuring that she never got away from him again, but her haunting past and his daunting insecurities may stand in the way.

    Dawn and Kevin quickly learn that the heated passion that they create between the sheets would make any normal person spontaneously combust, but for them, it becomes uncontainable. They can’t get enough of each other, and it helps to get them through countless obstacles during their journey to serenity.

    Last Chance for Love is the first manuscript that I have submitted for representation. I have written others, but this one is, by far, my favorite. I fell in love with my characters to an almost unhealthy degree.

    Thank you!

    Jennifer Willis

  57. Kristen Grom says:

    Thanks for allowing us to submit!

    Kameron Teague tolerates her ex-husband, Kent, for the sake of their son Scotty. Now, Kent’s more determined than ever to get Kameron back; a difficult task when the woman he’s chasing has been abandoned too many times by the ones she loves, including him.

    The past isn’t the only obstacle Kent faces. Kameron’s best friend, Mallory, is adamant about getting Kameron a man in her life, any man, as long as it’s not Kent.

    The past may keep the once happy couple apart, but it also reminds Kameron of the many pleasures Kent’s place in her life promised. Even a heartbroken woman can’t resist Kent’s good looks, boyish charm, and smooth moves. But, can Kameron really forget the pain Kent caused her? Can Kent persuade Kameron to give him a second chance?

    Can he prove he’ll always be by her side?

  58. Kristen Grom says:

    A second pitch submission: Hopefully Yours

    Finding herself begins with losing everything . . .

    Cleaning up after old wrinkly people, who’ve lost their mind wasn’t June Bryant’s idea of summer vacation. But neither was the idea of telling the truth about the crime she “committed.” Determined to protect the guy she loves; Cal, she takes the fall. But something about his recent behavior irks her. Not to mention, she’s beginning to get comfortable at Golden Years, the assisted living home she’s required to work at to complete her community service. Maybe her newfound fondness for Golden Years has something to do with Holden Loughlin, the volunteer with blue eyes any girl could get lost in. 

    Despite her know-it-all attitude, June has a lot to learn about life. She’s about to face a hard truth: Choices have consequences.

    Can a teenage rebel really outrun a past that keeps getting in the way of any real future? 

  59. Jayne Evans says:

    Hunted by the Past is a completed romantic suspense of roughly 64 000 words.
    Corporate attorney Lucy Smith has her life perfectly planned out. She’ll become a name partner in her law firm, find a nice, malleable guy who doesn’t mind a carefully formatted relationship of date nights and sleepovers, and settle down to a trouble-free, mess-free, child- free life. When her sister decides to extend her vacation and leaves Lucy in charge of her six year old nephew, Lucy is positive she can handle temporary motherhood and still close out the biggest deal of her career.
    Constable Grady Harrison has a debt to pay. After a bad decision during a tour in Afghanistan costs a child his life, Grady lives every day to try and make up for his mistake. When he is dispatched to a bank robbery he’s fully prepared to take a bullet to get the hostages, including Lucy and her nephew, out alive – even if it means he has to strip down to his boxers to appease the psycho robber.
    When the bank robber is assassinated while under guard at the hospital and Grady sees evidence of a break in at Lucy’s house, he feels honour bound to protect them until he can figure out who may be after them. He’ll just ignore the way the boy makes him laugh and the way Lucy wakes up the part of his soul he thought had died in Afghanistan.
    Lucy has had enough of her flaky sister’s shenanigans. She doesn’t think for a second Grady is right about she and her nephew being the targets of some criminal plot, but if he can help find her sister so Lucy can get back to her real life, she’s willing to play along. Falling for a man who refuses to follow her rules is not in her plan, so she just won’t do it. She’ll just ignore the pull between them and the way she begins to rely on him when it starts to look someone really might be out to get them.

  60. Libby Murphy says:

    Thank you so much to everybody who pitched a book today! This was SUCH a tough decision, because as you can see there were so many amazing books to consider.

    I’ve chosen ten of them to give feedback on, but if your book wasn’t chosen you are more than welcome to send it to me through the regular submission channel. I’m always open for submissions, and I will consider all books sent to me!

    This has been a lot of fun, and I appreciate the time you all took to post your pitches. Thank you!

    Best wishes,

    1. Merryn Dexter says:

      Thank you for your time, Libby and congratulations to those who got selected :)

  61. Julie Shackman says:

    “Getting Over Casanova”

    Some men think they are Casanova… He is !

    Holly Morrison and her artist brother Blair own “Something Novel”, their late parents bookshop.

    Determined to make a success of the business, Holly decides she has no time for romance and puts behind her a list of dating disasters.

    However, when a mysterious, handsome Italian, wearing 18th century dress, appears out of the blue, suffering from amnesia, not only is historical romance fan Holly’s life turned upside down, but also the sleepy Scottish town of White Hills…. (Romantic comedy; total word count approx 77,000)

  62. CC Faye says:

    Hi Libby,

    Thank you so much for this wonderful opportunity to pitch my book. If you are looking for sci-fi, featuring nuclear bombs and atomic warfare in a dystopian world, I think you would be interested in my 92, 000-word young adult, sci-fi dystopian BLIND CANDIDATE.

    Gifted with flawless instincts and honed analytical skills, 15-year old Ciara is primed to be a hero, but combined with her blindness, these abilities might make her the Candidate: a sacrificial lamb for the Empress.

    The Candidate has unique memories that could grant power to the fission bombs planted by the Empress, which would cause her ultimate victory in an age old nuclear war, and the untimely death of the citizens living in the poorest regions.

    Ciara joins the anti-government organization called the Vixens, who are preparing to battle against the Empress, but during her intense training, she must contend with their utter contempt for her. They see her blindness as a weakness, rather than what it really is, her hidden weapon—heightening all her other senses and making people underestimate her.

    When the Empress successfully accesses Ciara’s memories and activates the timing sequence on the bombs, Ciara discovers that there are now only ten days to stop the detonation and save millions of people.

    The full manuscript is available should you be interested in reading it. Thank you so much for your time. I look forward to your response.

    CC Faye

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