Monday, April 29, 2013

Debt Collector Book Blitz: Guest Post by Susan Kaye Quinn, and a Couple of Giveaways!

Debt Collector by Susan Kaye Quinn
Series: Debt Collector, Serial 1-3
Publication date: 2013
Genre: NA Future-Noir

EPISODES 1-3 (Delirium, Agony, Ecstasy) of the Debt Collector serial. Contains mature content and themes. For young-adult-appropriate thrills, see Susan's bestselling Mindjack series.


What's your life worth on the open market?
A debt collector can tell you precisely.

Lirium plays the part of the grim reaper well, with his dark trenchcoat, jackboots, and the black marks on his soul that every debt collector carries. He's just in it for his cut, the ten percent of the life energy he collects before he transfers it on to the high potentials, the people who will make the world a better place with their brains, their work, and their lives. That hit of life energy, a bottle of vodka, and a visit from one of Madam Anastazja's sex workers keep him alive, stable, and mostly sane... until he collects again. But when his recovery ritual is disrupted by a sex worker who isn't what she seems, he has to choose between doing an illegal hit for a girl whose story has more holes than his soul or facing the bottle alone--a dark pit he's not sure he'll be able to climb out of again.

The first three episodes of the Debt Collector serial are collectively the length of a short novel, or 152 pages. These are the first three of nine episodes in the first season of The Debt Collector serial. This dark and gritty future-noir is about a world where your life-worth is tabulated on the open market and going into debt risks a lot more than your credit rating. Episode 4, Broken, releases 4/17/13.

For more about the Debt Collector serial,

What's a Serial and Why Would I Read One?
by Susan Kaye Quinn, author of a new future-noir serial called The Debt Collector

Covers for Debt Collector, Episodes 1, 2, and 3

A serial is a series of episodes - or short stories - that are connected to tell a larger story.

Must Read TV

Serials are actually a lot like a TV series, which themselves vary a lot in type. Series like Law&Order and House are more self-contained, with only a few character storylines carrying over from episode to episode. Series like Lost or Heroes would be difficult to watch out of order because the storylines carry more strongly, sometimes with cliffhangers, sometimes not.

Some readers like the week-by-week suspense of Must Watch TV; others would rather wait until the season is done and get it from netflix so they can watch it back-to-back. Likewise, some readers enjoy the suspense of reading a serial episode-by-episode as they're released. Others would rather wait until the entire serial is complete and read it all at once. Either is fine!

Is a Serial a New Idea?

Ebook serials are a new thing, because ebooks are a new thing - but serials have been around since Charles Dickens wrote and released Great Expectations (self-published through his own literary magazine!) in 6,000 word "installments" every week for nine months. Readers today aren't accustomed to reading in serial format because publishing serials was restricted to magazines, which didn't have wide circulation. Now with ebooks, the cost of transmission is low and the distribution is wide. Ebooks have revived the short story form! But for readers raised on novels, who crave longer works and more in-depth stories, serials are the next natural step.

Is a Serial a Novel Cut Into Pieces?

No. A serial is not a chopped up novel, just like a TV episode is not a chopped up movie. It's a different way of telling stories. In a way, it's more demanding to write than novels - you need to immediately draw the reader in, you have to reach some kind of reader-satisfaction-level by the end of the episode (even if you have a cliff-hanger), and you have to maintain that pace and storytelling arc over multiple episodes. But all that hard work on the part of the author makes it (potentially) more enjoyable for the reader.

Can You Name Some Successful Serials?

Hugh Howey's Wool
RaShelle Workman's Blood and Snow
Platt &Wright's Yesterday's Gone

These are all recent bestselling serials that drew audiences in and helped revitalize the serial form.

Why Would I Read a Serial?

Readers tell me that they're enjoying the short episodes - they can read them quickly over lunch or in an evening and get a full "story" worth of entertainment. The fast pacing means there's a lot of story packed into a short number of words. Readers also say they enjoy the anticipation of finding out "what will happen next" much like a TV series where you get invested in the characters. Think about how a favorite TV series will sometimes focus one episode on one character or another, diving into their backstory. As a writer, I like that I can go in-depth a little more in each "episode" than I could in a novel, giving a richness to the story and characters that might be more difficult to do in a novel format.

All serials eventually come to an end, just like a "season" of your favorite TV series. Whether you enjoy reading serials as they release, or want to wait until the complete season is out so you can read the episodes back-to-back, serials are a fast-paced, exciting way to enjoy a story.

As a writer, I find serials are the hardest writing I've ever loved.

Susan Kaye Quinn is the author of the bestselling YA SF Mindjack series. Her new Debt Collector serial is her more grown-up SF. Her steampunk fantasy romance is temporarily on hold while she madly writes episodes to keep Lirium (the titular Debt Collector) happy. Plus she needs to leave time to play on Facebook. Susan has a lot of degrees in engineering, which come in handy when dreaming up dangerous mind powers, future dystopias, and slightly plausible steampunk inventions. Mostly she sits around in her pajamas in awe that she gets make stuff up full-time. You can find her at

What's your life worth on the open market?
A debt collector can tell you precisely.

Delirium (Debt Collector 1) is now available on
to check all the latest episode releases
and goings on in the Debt Collector world.

About the author

Susan Kaye Quinn grew up in California, where she wrote snippets of stories and passed them to her friends during class. Her teachers pretended not to notice and only confiscated her stories a couple times.

Susan left writing behind to pursue a bunch of engineering degrees, but she was drawn back to writing by an irresistible urge to share her stories with her niece, her kids, and all the wonderful friends she’s met along the way.

She doesn't have to sneak her notes anymore, which is too bad.

Susan writes from the Chicago suburbs with her three boys, two cats, and one husband. Which, it turns out, is exactly as a much as she can handle.

Connect with Susan

And now for the giveaways!

There is one giveaway right here, just for those of you reading this on The Book Bag. One international winner will receive an e-book of Delirium, Book #1 of The Debt Collector series. 
It hooked me for sure!

And then there is the Grand Prize Book Blitz Giveaway,
which is for a Kindle + Debt Collector 1-3 ebook (US only)

Be sure to check out both of them!

The Book Bag's Giveaway

The Grand Prize Giveaway!

And be sure to check the sidebar for my other giveaways!


  1. Replies
    1. You are so welcome! I am excited to read # 5 tomorrow!

  2. No, I haven't either. I would wait until there are many out before I got the first one. I hate waiting to find out what will happen next.

    1. Luckily Susan is releasing these chapters fairly close together so we, the readers, haven't had to wait very long for the next one.

  3. I've read several serial novels. Most recently I began reading Beyonders by Brandon Mull along with my teenage son.

  4. I have, but I don't like waiting for each part to come out.
    Bonnie Hilligoss/

  5. NOpe i've never read a serial novel

  6. I have not. I'm one of those who waits for the complete season of a shoe to come out on netflix. The Debt Collector sounds so rich, dark and intriguing. I dying to read it! From what I've read, seen and heard about it, it will likely get me hooked on serials.

  7. Well, if Twilight and Harry Potter could be considered serial novels. I'm just a tad confused about the distinction. Maybe I haven't, lol.

    1. My understanding of a serial novel is that it is published a chapter at a time. I know in this case, Susan is about 2 chapters ahead writing as we are reading. Talk about stress for a writer. :)

    2. Well, I signed up for this, so I have no one but my self to blame! Actually, writing while people are reading the series is a lot of fun - challenging, sure, but I get to fold in and respond to reader expectations, which is a cool thing.

      Cindi - Twilight and HP are series, which means that each "installment" is a complete novel (defined as >40k words and with a beginning-middle-end of a story). My episodes are also "installments" but they're shorter (each is about 15k) and while they all have beginning-middle-end, there is also a stronger story arc pulling through the season of nine episodes. My 3-episode bundles are about the length of a novel, so you could think of the season as three mini-novels, or one very long novel. There are story arcs that cover each episode, each set of three, and the season as a whole, just like there are in Twilight and HP... so I can see the comparison! In all, they're all just different flavors of storytelling. :)

    3. Thanks for stopping by, Susan and explaining this fascinating way of writing. Keep 'em coming!


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