The Guardian books blog has brought some pretty good things to my attention of late, not least the Mills and Boon New Voices competition.   The winner could well go on to literary stardom, or at least romance publication; and everyone who enters is given feedback on their first chapter – as Alison Flood discovered.

My first thought on reading this was to submit the first chapter of last year’s NaNoWriMo effort, which started life as an affectionate M&B parody.  But it was a short-lived thought, which lasted approximately up until the point where I re-read the thing.  The Single Mum’s Aristocratic Library Assistant has many fine qualities, but it is not stylistically appropriate for this contest.  I have copied and pasted below with a couple of minor edits so you can see what I mean…

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