Wednesday, December 18, 2013

A chat with Liza O'Connor, author of 'Ghost Lover'

What was the inspiration behind Ghost Lover?
Most of my stories come to me when I’m dreaming. For this one I dreamt I’d made love to a very romantic ghost. In the morning, I went downstairs and googled to determine if that really happened to people. Turns out it’s been happening forever. Although I have to say, my Ghost Lover seems much nicer than a lot of those of lore (which should be called Demon Defilers.)
Did you have to do any research for this book?
I’ve yet to write a book that does not require research. I almost always need a lawyer…or five. My characters are trouble magnets and there seems to be no end to the trouble they get into. Because laws are different for every state, I need to ensure my lawyer knows that state.

I also had to investigate Lassier’s and the Durran history, and checked with my many English friends on how they would say things.
Which character is your favorite?
Mr. Finch the Ghost Cat. While it’s not in book, I gave him a fabulous backstory, which I share in some of my blogs. I’ll give you the short version here. Lassier lived in the 15th century and spent a great deal of his time protecting his lands from invaders. Mr. Finch is an ocelot he raised from a kitten. The 40 pound wildcat would ride into battle on his horse’s leather covered rump. During one battle, Lassier’s blade broke, but before the enemy could take kill Lassier, Mr. Finch leapt onto the neck of the enemy’s horse, causing the animal to rear and unseat the man. Then Mr. Finch stuck his paw into the man’s visor, causing the man to drop his sword to protect his eyes. Sadly, the man twisted Mr. Finch’s neck before Lassier could kill him.

The cat had saved Lassier’s life twice that day, so Lassier buried the animal in the family cemetery in hopes Mr. Finch would return as a ghost, just as all Durrans buried there did. He stayed up that night, waiting for Mr. Finch to rise. At midnight, the mist rose from the grave, but instead of forming the image of a ghost cat, it dissipated. Lassier silently cried at the loss of his grand cat until a familiar purr resonated in the air and heavy paws pressed on his chest. Mr. Finch was invisible but very much there. In fact, he proved to be more formidable than ever now, because no enemy could see what attacked them as he protected his master in all future battles.
What is so appealing about ghost stories, both as a reader and as a writer?
Huffington Post did a survey recently and found 45% of people in the US believe in ghosts.

I believe in ghosts because I live with one. She’s the original owner of my home—I suppose I should say HER home—and after a rough start, we’ve gotten along very well. However, because I know for a fact they exists, that means ghosts get to pop up in any of my books as a character. They are fair game.
Please tell us about your other published works.
Saving Casey is about an old woman who dies and returns in the body of a 17 yr old troubled teen. It starts out funny and then gets serious as the people who killed Casey come after Cass. (I also believe in reincarnation.)
[Psssst! Hey, everyone, Andi here, interrupting for a moment. You can read my review of Saving Casey over at Andi's Young Adult Books!]
Then I have a humorous Disaster Romance series called A Long Road To Love. The first two books, Worst Week Ever and Oh Stupid Heart are both available on Amazon. It’s about a billionaire egocentric boss and his adorable middle class Executive Assistant. They are like two different species and the relationship is impossible, but do they listen to me? No! They keep trying to make it work. I finally get them to come to reason in the third book, coming out in Feb 2014. It’s called Coming to Reason.
What other projects are you currently working?
I’m writing a fourth book resolving Trent’s screwed up life, and I’ll also be bringing out a Victorian-era humorous Mystery series starting mid-2014 which is my favorite series I’ve ever written.
What really drives you as a writer?
I love to tell stories.
How do you handle a case of writer's block?
I’ve never had writer’s block
You have a nose for adventure. What is one of your most memorable experiences?
I’ll never forget the first time I jumped out of a plane. Right after we took off, the stall alarm went off because the plane was overloaded with jumpers. Since I am also a pilot, I knew what the alarm meant, so I made my peace with God and prepared to crash. Somehow, they got the little plane up in the sky. When it came time to jump, I volunteered to get out of the little junk heap ASAP. However, the moment I rolled my legs out of the open side of the plane to feel about for the small metal bar to stand upon, I had a moment where I feared I’d be sucked out by the wind. Stupid fear, since I planned to jump out anyway, so I scolded myself and successfully grabbed hold of the strut until the instructor was satisfied and nodded for me to release the wing.

It was incredibly windy and noisy and so far I hadn’t enjoyed anything about this adventure, but once I let go and the death trap plane flew off without me and my chute opened, the most amazing sense of peace overcame me.

Nothing has come close to the calming sensation I felt that day. This proved to be most fortunate, because when I attempted to guide my parachute to the landing zone, I discovered one of the toggles had tangled up, so my chute could not be steered. Instead of panicking, I mentally said, “Oh look, the toggle is tangled. I need to fix that,” and set about putting matters to right. Once I had it operable, I steered away from the trees and power lines I had been heading towards, located my landing-site, and landed safely.
What is something readers may be surprised to learn about you?
I had an important role in bringing you fiber to the home and high speed internet. You’re welcome.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
Live life as if this is your only one. I don’t actually think it is. I believe we reincarnate. But treat it as if it is, because the next time you might return as an Aye Aye. (Here’s a funny you tube on the Aye Aye:
Thank you so much for your time!
Thanks for having me. It was fun.

by Liza O’Connor



Two sexy English brothers. One irresistible ghost. Who would you choose as your lover?

Completely broke and with a criminal record to boot, Senna Smith is one day from eviction from her apartment when Brendon, her promiscuous roommate from London, suggests she go to England, marry him, and manage his fortune. With few other options, she agrees to an open marriage. But she’ll never, ever, have sex with him, knowing if she falls in love with him, he’ll break her heart.

As trustee of Brendon’s family fortune, there is no way Brendon’s older brother, Garrison Durran, is going to let him marry a self-professed American gold-digger. As Senna tries to embrace castle life and English society for Brendon’s sake, Gar discovers Senna is the perfect woman for him--beautiful and intelligent, kind and caring. Now, if she wasn’t already engaged to his brother…

The ancestral ghost of Durran Castle has to intervene if the Durran brothers have any chance of an heir. He can’t leave them to fix matters on their own. They are useless buggers when it comes to love. As counselor to Gar, matchmaker for Brendon, and lover to Senna, a ghost’s work is never done.

CONTENT WARNING: Allergy warning: Ghost cat in book.

Read an excerpt:
Senna woke to her breast beeping. Trying to make sense of the oddity, she pushed herself up to rest on her elbows and discovered the noise came from Brendon’s wristwatch. Somehow, his hand had found its way beneath her bra during the night, and now chirped like a baby chick.

She contemplated tearing his hand off at the wrist, but he looked so angelic with his curly dark hair framing his handsome face. With a heavy sigh, she unlatched her bra and eased his hand out, then gently shook him until his face scrunched into a pained grimace.

He groaned and frowned at his noisy watch. “This is a god-awful hour to be woken up,” he said in his sexy British accent. “Never bothers me when I’m coming home at this hour.”

Senna rolled her eyes. “Speak for yourself.”

Pushing himself up, he shook his head. “Remember the second night I came around? You kept yelling at me, ‘Did I realize it was four in the morning?’ At the time, I couldn’t understand your fuss.” He groaned and scratched his scalp. “Well, I certainly understand it now. It’s bloody hell to be woken at this ungodly hour.”

Available as ebook and paperback

AUTHOR Bio and Links:

Liza lives in Denville, NJ with her dog, Jess. They hike in fabulous woods every day, rain or shine, sleet or snow. Having an adventurous nature, she learned to fly small cessnas in NJ, hang-glide in New Zealand, kayak in Pennsylvania, ski in New York, scuba dive with great white sharks in Australia, dig up dinosaur bones in Montana, sky dive in Indiana, and raft a class four river in Tasmania. She’s an avid gardener, amateur photographer, and dabbler in watercolors and graphic arts. Yet through her entire life, her first love has and always will be writing novels. She loves to create interesting characters, set them loose, and scribe what happens.

Liza will be awarding a digital copy of "Worst Week Ever" to a randomly drawn commenter at every stop, and a grand prize of one $50 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn commenter during this tour and her Virtual Book Tour. Follow the tour for more chances to win!
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  1. Always enjoy your interviews.

  2. Not sure...i remember after my grandpa died I woke up (or thought i did) and he was rocking the chair in the corner of my room - he smiled and i went back to sleep

  3. I haven't seen one but sometimes with doors randomly closing and all the sounds I hear its hard not to think Ghost O_O

    1. That's how I figured out I had a ghost. She also likes to move my rugs.

  4. What a scary event when the chute toggles were tangled. My mom used to jump out of planes. She was fearless too. It's too bad that I'm not like that!

    1. Oddly, I wasn't scared in the least. I've never felt more calm and at ease than I did once I left the death plane. Hearing stall alarms scared me.

  5. Very informative interview!


  6. I'm a little jealous that you have a ghost. When we moved to the UK, our relocation specialist spoke to us about the age of the homes we could consider renting. I think he was surprised when I asked if we could rent something around 300 years old that had a benign spirit as a resident. Great interview, Ms. Liza

  7. Really intriguing interview!


  8. No, I've never seen a ghost before. I don't know what I'll do if I do see one. I'm easily scared. :/


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