The First Review of BLOOD IN THE PAINT is IN!!!

It has barely been a week since I sent out the ARCs of Blood in the Paint, but I’ve already received my first review. I am very thankful to Peter “Peppa” Germany for his support, his enthusiasm, and his friendship (which, by the way, he goes out of his way to mention didn’t have any bearing on his review!).

Here are some of the highpoints:

I’ve been waiting for this novel since I read it’s prequel, Blood In The Past (

Now you don’t have to read the prequel novella before reading Blood In The Paint but I would recommend it. As I read Blood In The Paint I did have some moments when I said ‘Oh Sh*T!’ because I recognised something from the prequel.

Blood In The Paint is a thoroughly enjoyable read. I knocked this novel out in five days or so, I would have read it quicker but I’m a slow reader and I needed sleep. As I read through the pages I was getting more and more sucked into it, each page demanded that I turn it and when I got to the end of a chapter I couldn’t scroll the screen down quick enough to continue with the story.

The characters have a strong depth to them which is clear from the start of the novel but as you progress through it that depth is revelled and fleshed out even more. Jordanna East is not afraid to push her characters and she was able to pull me into it to the point where, despite my manliness (LMAO!), I got chocked up near the end of the novel. It takes a lot to get that sort of reaction out of me when I’m reading a book so that did impress me.


Although I am sorry that I made him cry, I’m utterly touched at how he continues to find my work “impressive.” To read more of Peter “Peppa” Germany’s review, click HERE.

And don’t forget, Blood in the Paint will be released on March 31st!

Turns Out, I DO Know My Serial Killers

Blood in the Paint Cover

My upcoming release, Blood in the Paint, is going through the final stages of editing and I couldn’t be more terrified happier. I started writing Blood in the Paint almost a decade ago, way before its predecessor, Blood in the Past, and it’s been quite a journey.

I minored in Criminology and Psychology in college and that basic knowledge has helped me tremendously. But I’ve still had my doubts. Am I writing Lyla Kyle’s background correctly? Am I right about her motivations? Am I right about her methods and mindset? Still, I did my research and I was confident I knew my stuff.

Until a few months ago. One of the new beta readers to join my gaggle didn’t get through the entire Blood in the Paint manuscript. She questioned Lyla Kyle as a serial killer every step of the way. My face flushed with every comment she’d left. “I went to school for this,” I mumbled through clenched teeth. Eventually I got over it. I re-verified all the details, reminded myself that she hadn’t even read Blood in the Past (so she didn’t have Lyla’s background info), and moved on.

Then I found this Jennifer Chase blog post that put me at ease completely. She listed the four types of serial killers and I was psyched to discover I was already familiar with them:

Power & Control

This type of serial killer experiences complete sexual gratification from the domination and humiliation of the victim.  This killer is a true sociopath and lives by his own personal set of rules and guidelines.  Many of the famous serial killers we have seen in history would fall under his type of serial killer.


This type of serial killer is compelled by voices or visions they experience and are considered psychotic.  These voices and visions compel them to kill certain kinds of people.


This type of serial killer feels a “need” or duty to kill certain types of people or “class” of people such as religious or racial groups or prostitutes.  This type of serial killer is not considered psychotic.


This type of serial killer makes a strong connection between personal violence and sexual gratification.  This type of killer can also be described as a “lust” or “thrill” killer.  This killer receives pleasure from the act and has eroticized the experience.  They generally take the time to torture or mutilate their victims.

For those of you wondering, Lyla Kyle is most definitely a mission killer. In her mind, her father’s infidelity led to her mother’s death. Having always shown a predisposition for killing, even as a child, her mother’s death was the catalyst that motivated her to seek out and seduce married men…and kill them. Also, any collateral damage that occurs during the commission of her mission killings vexes her terribly. So far, so good, if you ask me.

Next, Ms. Chase posted several comments made by criminal psychology professionals from organizations such as the FBI, the Behavioral Analysis Unit (BAU), and the National Center for the Analysis of Violent Crime (NCAVC). The uncertainty surrounding my knowledge and my main character dissipated as I skimmed through them:

Predisposition to serial killing, much like other violent offenses, is biological, social, and psychological in nature, and it is not limited to any specific characteristic or trait. (Sounds like what I briefly described above regarding Lyla, doesn’t it?)

• The development of a serial killer involves a combination of these factors, which exist together in a rare confluence in certain individuals. They have the appropriate biological predisposition, molded by their psychological makeup, which is present at a critical time in their social development.(This sounds familiar, too!)

• There are no specific combinations of traits or characteristics shown to differentiate serial killers from other violent offenders.

• There is no generic template for a serial killer. (This quote is my favorite. The beta reader who got me down kept trying to put Lyla in a box. Every serial killer is different!)

• Serial killers are driven by their own unique motives or reasons. (Preach!)

• Serial killers are not limited to any specific demographic group, such as their sex, age, race, or religion.

• The majority of serial killers who are sexually motivated erotized violence during development. For them, violence and sexual gratification are inexplicably intertwined in their psyche.

• More research is needed to identify specific pathways of development that produce serial killers. (Exactly! And until then, we can, with some limits, write serial killers any way we choose.)

Now that I feel better, I spend my time being thankful that the other four beta readers devoured my manuscript of Blood in the Paint and had nothing but nice things to say about it. Not to mention the fact that Blood in the Past now has 40 reviews on Amazon and not one of them questions the believability of my characters. In fact, almost all of them say the exact opposite.

Have any of you read Blood in the Past? How did you feel about Lyla Kyle? Are any of you writers who have had your characters’ motives questioned? I want to hear from you!

(PS: This is basically the ‘cover reveal’ for Blood in the Paint! What do you think?)

I Put the “Ass” In Procrastination

My critique partner, Eli Godbolt, said he was going to dedicate this past Monday and Tuesday to writing and writing only. I was inspired. I had to work at the stupid bookstore on Monday, but I vowed to do some serious writing on Tuesday and Wednesday. The weather was supposed to be gorgeous and my whiteboard was chock full of chapter outlines.

Let’s do this! Right?

Jordanna, please meet the overly played out phrase “Epic Fail.”

image courtesy of

See, what had happened was…aka here’s what my brain said:

“The last chapter flowed so smoothly because you wrote it all down in longhand first. We should do that this time. After we check our Twitter notifications.”

“Oh dear, we forgot to mention Lyla’s husband in that chapter. Remember? Now we have to check Facebook.”

“Well now the chapter is way too long. We should split it up into two chapters. But first, when was the last time you hit refresh on your email?”

“Hungry! You know that pumpkin cake we make? We should try that with those overripe bananas on the kitchen table.”

“We should check Pinterest! Right now!”

“Okay, we’ll start writing. But first we should take a few artsy photos of our notebook with Instagram.”

“Our nail polish is chipped. We should take it off.”

“Okay, we’re typing. You know what would be cool? If we could find something like Lyla’s driftwood coffee table on Pinterest. Let’s go look!”

“It’s been a while since we checked Facebook and Twitter. I’m just saying…”

“Our writing is awesome. So much better than that crappy book we’re reading. We should actually just hunker down and finish that and get it over with.”

“The cat knocked our thesaurus off the table. It’s out of reach. We can’t do a read-through of this chapter right now.”

“Let’s go write by the river! … What’s that guy doing? Look at that sail boat! We want a kayak! Oooh a butterfly! Aagh, a mosquito. Is that guy staring at us? Hasn’t he ever seen anyone take pictures with Instagram before? Ugh!”

“We want beer!”

“Dammit, there’s no beer in the house.”

“We should go grocery shopping. Wait, we don’t really need anything. We should go buy new clothes for our upcoming vacation though. Right now, before all the summer clothes are gone.”

“We still want beer! Beer helps us write!’

“We should bring the laptop to the local craft beer restaurant and sit outside and write!”

“We have to take pictures of the laptop next to the craft beer with Instagram though.”

“Anything new with Facebook, Twitter, Email? Oh my God, we forgot WordPress! What are our hits? WHAT ARE OUR HITS???”

“Ooh someone liked our picture on Instagram! We should upload it on Facebook and Twitter!”

And this is how my two dedicated days of writing went. Somewhere in there I was also sick. Heaven forbid I should try to write between bouts of losing my cookies. (That’s a euphemism. It wasn’t like, “Oh no, where’d my snickerdoodles go?“) I know, so sad. I’m sure we all have days like this. Good news is I did manage to churn out two pretty good chapters. Just have to polish them up tomorrow.

That’s right, tomorrow. Shut up.

PS: My critique partner also failed. But his reasons were infinitely better so I won’t embarrass myself by including them here.

PPS: You guys should follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram. Just search Jordanna East. I’m saturating the social network. Boo-yah!

Has Anyone Seen My Horse? Oh, There It Is Behind My Cart!

Recently I wrote myself into a corner. A brick corner. A brick corner reinforced with steel and concrete. I used it as an excuse not to write and instead I focused on other aspects of writing. Which I suppose is better than eating cupcakes and watching SVU reruns all day. But then I realized something: SVU is an amazing show. But all jokes aside, while I was busy doing other things, I was essentially putting my cart before my horse. I just needed to sit down and write. Today I did that and managed to get out a little over 600 words. And they weren’t crap! So here’s a list of things I won’t be focusing on as much:

  • This Blog. Just kidding, I love this thing. What I don’t love is trying to force myself to adhere to a Monday-Wednesday-Friday schedule. Sometimes life gets in the way. Sometimes I just don’t have anything to report. Also, being funny can be very taxing. I don’t wanna waste all the funny.
  • Social Networking. I’m keeping my facebook; don’t wanna disappoint the whopping 23 people that “Liked” me on there. Also keeping Twitter because having my account suspended (unnecessarily) every other week  is something I live for. However, I don’t think I’ll be spending as much time at World Literary Cafe (even though it’s the best thing to happen to authors since laptops) and I won’t be signing up for LinkedIn or Klout just yet.
  • Fretting Over a Title. Seriously, I’m only about a third of the way done with the first draft of my novel. The title is not important right now, finishing the novel is. (Even though I am really starting to like the working title…dammit there I go again.)
  • Fretting Over Book Cover Art. Scroll up a few lines. See what I wrote there about the title? Applies here too. (Gotta spread the funny where you can, ya know?)
  • Learning Stuff. Ok, that’s not entirely true. I still want to learn how to be a better writer. But I don’t need to learn that much about publishing options and marketing strategies right now. These things are still important, but I need to have a finished product before I can act on anything I learn. And who knows? The industry may continue to evolve and the plan I started to formulate might be antiquated or obselete next year.
  • Editing. I have a thing for editing. *Cue collective Gasp* It’s true. I keep going backwards to search out passive voice, unnecessary adverbs, and vague descriptions. If I keep this up, I’ll never finish my novel. But I’ll have the most beautiful, most polished 1/3 of a book you people have ever seen, dammit!
  • Requesting Beta Readers. If there’s anything that screams “cart before horse,” its requesting the advice of a beta reader before your novel is finished. In my defense, this individual is also writing a novel and I offered to read for him and we worked out an arrangement where were going to swap chapter for chapter. His work is finished, mine is not. so the arrangement was obviously for my benefit. In regards to my first chapter, he offered very good advice, but some of his insight I refused to accept because he hadn’t read the remaining chapters. Of course this was through no fault of his, but I think its better that I not ask for critiques until the damn thing is done. (You can find him over at In and Out of Place, by the way.)

So there you have it. I’ve gotta focus on writing. So this is me, holding a carrot out, and coaxing my horse back in front of my cart. Wish me luck and hit up the comments section.

The Results Are In! But Now What???

Yesterday I posted a poll asking my loyal readers (and newbies to JJE) whether or not I should post the first chapter of my novel here in order to invite constructive criticism. The results were overwhelmingly in favor of posting 92.31%, and only 7.69% opposed.

HOWEVER! Several commenters brought the issue of piracy to my attention.

Wait, can I call it piracy if the content isn’t copywrite protected? You know what? I am. Because pirates take stuff that isn’t theirs and that definition works for me right now.

Anyway, so my fellow writers were concerned for my well-being, the darlings that they are, and suggesting I find a safer venue to post my work for critique. Liz Hellebuyck suggested I check out Absolute Write, which I plan on doing over the weekend. Does anyone else have any safer suggestions for me? If you do, please let me know in that trusty ol’ comments section. But please don’t mention Yahoo Answers. I read a blog this morning about the work that is usually posted to Yahoo Answers and it totally bummed me out (If the author of that blog post is reading this, I’m sorry but I forget which blog I was reading because I was too busy sobbing- jk. But if you identify yourself in the comments section, I’ll be sure to give you credit for my mental anguish, haha).

Also, another blogger-buddy, Vikki, told me to be cautious about posting work here because in the UK posting your writing on your blog counts as “publishing” it, therefore you are unable to actually publish it later, or enter said work into writing competitions. She wasn’t sure if the same stipulations applied in the US of A, so thats something else for me to look into over the weekend. Again, any information in that department would be appreciated in that blank box called the comments section.

So, now I have a weekEND To Do List to add to my weekLY To Do List. I have a feeling my current list is going to bleed into next week’s list…Oh well. In between, I’ll be marking up my first chapter with a little red pen that I think is cute now, but will eventually turn into an ink-spewing devil. Wish me luck and enjoy your weekend!

(And don’t neglect the comments section!)


A Poll: Will You Care, Should I Dare to Share?

Rhyming soothes me…

As you may remember, part of my impromptu To Do List so I don’t suck at life this week was to work on revising and polishing my first chapter so that if in the slim chance someone at the ASJA conference asks to see a sample of my work, I have one. I even went to so far as to look up some pointers for writing a good first chapter. Anyway, after about an hour with my new beloved whiteboard, I am trying to decide if I should post the first chapter here for critique, since said whiteboard did not come equipped with a living, breathing soundboard.

So, for tomorrow’s post, should I post my first chapter here and invite constructive criticism? Or should I just be my usual, witty self? FYI: I already have a funny plan B post in case the response to the poll is, “Frick off lady, no one cares about your novel or your whiteboard!

Please VOTE!