It’s been a while since I posted an ITT blog, part of my series of praising the living and not waiting until they’re dead to say how much I respect and admire them, but I’ve found myself three times this month waxing lyrical about the work of Tiffany Reisz to various people and it struck me that she’s eminently worthy of a living tribute. So here it is.
She’s a great writer. No really. If you haven’t read the Original Sinners series, drop everything, clear your diary for the next week and stock up on coffee. Then download each and every last one of them, the red years and the white years. You won’t be sorry. I’m fairly sure I’ve reviewed a few of them on the blog here, all glowing 5* reviews, which should tell you something. It’s rare for me to hand out 5*. It goes deeper than just being an amazing writer though. She creates lives and webs that you get so absorbed and entangled in that it hits you like a physical punch to the stomach when something unexpected happens. They’re the kind of books that you finish and you’re still thinking about three weeks or three months later. She’s utterly fearless when it comes to tackling various issues that are on the edge of PC too and I love that about her books. As a writer, she’s what I aspire to be. In fact, if a fairy godmother appeared right now and told me I could write like any author on earth, I’d choose her without hesitation. There’s something so raw and visceral and powerful about the way that she writes. If you could bottle it, you’d make a fortune!
I like her as a person. She’s funny and quirky and really, really smart. Anyone with a bigger vocabulary than me gets major brownie points as far as I’m concerned! I don’t know her personally but she’s been funny and friendly in response to tweets and I’ll say more about that later. She has a fascinating background, having studied at seminary for a while, which is kind of a change in direction to writing erotic romance, but I guess there are convergences ‘twixt the two. She doesn’t appear to be afraid of being different, which is something I really admire. She is, I believe, engaged to another writer and the banter between them is funny to watch. It’s worth mentioning because us writers are sometimes an odd and introverted bunch. It’s glorious to know that there are people out there who understand and love our peculiar brand of weird.
One of the things I admire most about her is that she wins the internet. To me, she is the gold standard for how authors should behave online and I think it’s a winning mix of genuine awesomesauce and web smarts. As mentioned above, she always replies to tweets and she’s always lovely when she does so. She’s funny to follow on Twitter, blending sarcasm, dirty humour and genuine likeability flawlessly, and she even manages the requisite cat photos. As an aside, extra kudos is awarded for having a kitty called Honeytoast. Makes me giggle every time. Her activities over Christmas are always a benchmark for other authors – she usually sends out handwritten Christmas cards to everyone who signs up and she usually posts a special free story, this year in three parts. Her website has a number of free stories, which are a great idea to keep readers engaged in between book releases. It’s not really a surprise that her readers are such dedicated and devoted fans and I freely admit that I am one such. Hers are the books I recommend more than any others and it’s partly because they’re so bloody good and partly because she comes across as being a really good egg and it’s great to support people like that in this world.
She’s realistic in the way she talks about her writing online, which is both reassuring and inspiring. When she says she just deleted ten thousand words because it was crap or she’s struggling with whatever and then six months later we get this mind-blowing novel, it gives me hope that the days I struggle might turn into gold too. I greatly respect her honesty on that front.
So there it is. In summary, I respect and admire her skill, her niceness and her fearlessness. I’m sure there are any number of other fine qualities she has that I could ennumerate, but it’s late at night and my brain isn’t functioning much beyond gushing fangirl adoration right now so I’ll end it here!