Frequently Asked Questions
The Original Sinners Series
Question: What order should I read your books in?
Answer: The full-length Original Sinners novels are, in order:
The Red Years: 1) The Siren 2) The Angel 3) The Prince 4) The Mistress
The White Years: 5) The Saint 6) The King 7) The Virgin 8) The Queen
Do not read The White Years before reading The Red Years books first, otherwise you will not know who some vital characters are. The White Years are not 100% prequels—they continue the storyline after the end of The Mistress.
The novellas and free short stories can be read in any order but they do contain spoilers. I would suggest reading all the big books first in their proper order.
Buy links and pre-order links can be found on the books page.
Question: The Queen isn't really the end, is it?
Answer: The Queen is the last of the White Years novels. This doesn't mean there won't be additional short stories or novellas, but it's the last full-length Original Sinners novel...for now.
Question: When will there be an Original Sinners movie?
Answer: I have a film agent who takes my books to meetings with movie studios. If the movie studio decides they like the books and think they'll make good movies, they might buy the film and/or TV rights.
Then it takes a miracle, divine intervention, the hand of God itself coming down and touching your book to get it turned into a movie or TV series.
So the reason my books are not movies are because I don't own a movie studio, and no one who does own a movie studio has bought the film rights to any of my books yet.
Will this ever happen? Probably not. Romance writer Debbie Macomber had over 200 books published before she got a television series. Can lightning strike? Could I win the Hollywood lottery? Maybe. But again, probably not. But here's the thing--if I wanted my stories to be movies, I would write screenplays, not novels.
If you're dying to see the Original Sinners on screen, the best thing you can do as a reader is to get more people to read the books, buy the books, and talk about the books. Otherwise, don't sweat it. I didn't get into this gig to be in movies. I write novels because I love writing novels. A movie or TV series would be a thin layer of icing on a very delicious cake.
Question: When will The Confession of Marcus Stearns novella be released?
Answer: This novella was released as a print-only giveaway at the RT Booklovers Convention in 2014. It is now available as part of the paperback and ebook collection The Confessions from 8th Circle Press.
Question: You mentioned in a blog post that the Red Years books were going to be re-released in the US with new covers and bonus material.
Answer: The original plan was to reprint them w/ the new covers and bonus stories, but that is on hold indefinitely. In the meantime, Mira has updated the ebook covers to match the White Years.
Question: I saw someone wearing an Original Sinner T-shirt. Where can I get one?
Question: Whatever happened to the Original Sinners graphic novel announced in 2013?
Answer: Unfortunately, it's been postponed indefinitely.
Question: Are your characters based on real life people?
Answer: Zach Easton was inspired by Jason Isaacs. Wes was inspired by a close friend and an ex-boyfriend who was a type-one diabetic. Griffin was inspired by a friend in the kink community. Søren is based on God. Everyone else is a figment of my sick, dark imagination.
Question: I don't have an e-reader! How can I read your ebook-only novellas?
Answer: Using an ebook app, you can read ebooks on smartphones, iPads, and even on your computer. Check the website of the retailer offering the ebooks you want for further information on downloading their app or reading the ebooks online.
Question: When will your ebook-only novellas be in paperback?
Answer: Most ebook-only stories are published as ebooks because they're too short to appear on their own in print. Occasionally, an ebook-only novella will be included in a print anthology (The Gift/Seven Day Loan is available in 12 Shades of Surrender, for instance).
Question: How do you pronounce "Reisz"?
Answer: RICE, like the food.
Question: Where do you live?
Answer: Lexington, Kentucky.
Question: I heard you were a nun.
Answer: Nope. I did go to a conservative southern seminary, but dropped out to write. You can read about my journey from seminary student to erotica writer at The Huffington Post.
Question: I also heard you were a Dominatrix.
Answer: More lies! I visited a Dominatrix, though—and you can also read about that at The Huffington Post.
Question: Do you answer your own e-mails?
Answer: Yes! Although it can take up to three months for me to respond. I reply to every e-mail except for e-mails that contain nudity (i.e. don't send me naked pics of yourself or anyone else—I have the Internet after all).
Question: What is your writing process?
Answer: I don't write everyday. Don't listen to people who say you should write every single day. Sometimes you take a week off to read. Sometimes you take a week off to go to Miami and sit on a beach and dream new ideas. That's all fine. But when I'm writing a book, I write like a motherfucker.
9-10am WAKE UP AND EAT BREAKFAST
10-12am TWEET AND ANSWER EMAILS
2-6pm WRITE - Since moving to Portland I write at a park near our house that has a quiet meditation space. No WiFi there so I can get a ton of writing done. I've written 6000 words in a three hour span before. There's something magical about having absolutely no access to the internet and I can finish a 110,000 word draft in six weeks. Then I give it to four to six beta readers and make changes based on their notes. I'll send the final first draft to my editor. Six months later she gets it back to me with her suggestions. I make most of her suggestions plus do my own changes, which are usually extensive. The difference between the first final draft of The Saint and the final printed draft of The Saint is about 40%. Nico wasn't in the first final, neither were the ashes or the frame story. The first final was 136,000 words long. The print version is 118,000 words long. I do massive revisions on every book, and if I don't I feel like I've missed something.
Writing is so much more than typing. The story isn't perfectly formed in your head. You're not taking dictation from on high (although sometimes it can feel like that and those are the rare beautiful days when writing is a better high than any drug out there). You have to dig it out like you're digging out dinosaur bones. You lay the bones out, and then and only then do you know what sort of dinosaur you have. Then you get the wire and the glue and you can put the skeleton together to make something awesome. For every 10,000 words I write, maybe 5,000 get published. I delete a lot. I rewrite constantly. I am never married to anything in a draft until it's in print. I deleted my favorite chapter from The King because it doesn't fit into the new plot. C'est la guerre, as Kingsley would say. The new version will be better than the old. The old saying "The good is the enemy of the best" applies to your drafts. You might have a good scene, yes. But if you're willing to rethink, delete, and rewrite, you could have a better scene.
Years ago I asked my favorite professor at my alma mater Centre College if he thought another student was going to make it as a writer. My professor (Dr. Mark Lucas) said yes, he thought so because that student threw a lot away. That's the sign of a real writer, he said, not being too attached to your own words.
That student and I are now both international bestselling writers with major publishers. The best thing a writer who wants to make it big can do is be merciless with his or her own writing. Never settle for the good. Write for the best. Fight for the best.
Question: Can I send you a __________ in the mail?
Answer: In lieu of gifts, please donate to your local homeless shelter.
Question: When will you do a signing in my city?
Answer: Watch the tour page! If you don't see your city or country on the tour list, please don't take it personally. Writers almost always have to pay for their own book tours, and most locations outside of a day's driving distance are usually outside of the budget. If you want me to come to your town, ask your local bookstore if they're willing to organize a signing.
Question: Will you come to my book festival or conference?
Answer: Due to the number of requests received, I mostly attend conferences and festivals where expenses are paid by promoters.
PUBLICITY AND REVIEWS
Question: I'm a book blogger. Where can I find review copies of your books?
Answer: Book bloggers may access advance copies through NetGalley.
Question: Do you have a headshot or high-resolution images of your covers?
Answer: Yes—check out the press kit here.
Question: Who is your publicist?
Answer: Shara Alexander at Harlequin Mira (Shara_Alexander @ harlequin.ca).
Question: I'm a librarian. Where can I find trade journal reviews of your books?
Question: When will your books be translated into ____________?
Answer: Translations generally take at least a year from the date of English-language publication. Links for translated editions (including Italian, French, German, and Japanese) can be found here.
Question: Will you read my unpublished novel/short story? Can you introduce me to an agent or editor?
Answer: Unfortunately, no. Check with your local library or bookstore to see if there are critique or workshopping groups in your area. Additionally, you may want to check out RWA.org (Romance Writers of America) to see if there's a local chapter in your city.
Question: Will you blurb my book?
Answer: Due to time constraints—writing and revising two novels a year takes time!—I don't have time to respond to requests for blurbs.
Question: Where can I purchase signed books?
Answer: For a limited time, Jan's Paperbacks in Aloha, Oregon is selling signed copies online (US orders only). Otherwise, unless you can attend a signing, your best bet is to e-mail me your address and request a signed bookplate. Bookplates are stickers that you can then put in the front of your books. When e-mailing (firstname.lastname@example.org), be sure to include the number of bookplates you need. Don't forget to include your name!