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Occasionally, Nora will talk about this series either in interviews or on Facebook or wherever. When she says something specific about the series, those quotes will go here to give us a way to catalog and reference them.

General In Death Related Quotes Edit

On Why Nora Decided to Write the In Death Series Edit

"I wanted to try something a little different. I love writing romance and suspense but also wanted a twist. The near future setting provided this and allowed me to more or less create a world. What would it be like in 2058? I could decide. And I could illustrate my own feeling that while the toys may change, people remain basically the same. They still love and hate and covet; they still have courage and cowardice. They're still human."[1]

"My agent and publisher were urging me to write something under another name, due to marketing, publication schedules and so forth, and I'd finally agreed. If I could do something a little different. So the In Death Series was born." - February 8, 2003[2]

"I didn't have an inspiration for the In Death series. I just wanted to write something a little different, a little darker." - June 18, 2003[3]

"When I started the In Death books, I had no idea if I'd be able to do more than the initial three I'd contracted for. Nothing pleased me more than being able to continue to write the series due to reader response." - February 4, 2004[4]

"The In Death evolution is too long a story for here, but the short of it is we--me, agent, publisher--all decided to trust each other and to see what happened." - March 15, 2005[5]

When asked if she considered a different title:

"No, it was always In Death." - July 19, 2005[6]

Will they have Eve & Roarke on the book covers or create avatars Edit

"I'd argue against images of Eve and Roarke on the covers as everybody has their own image in their heads of the characters." - February 5, 2010[7]

On Keeping Track, Continuity and Writing The Series Edit

"As a rule, I do the In Death books three in a row. Keeps me in the groove." - September 22, 2002[8]

Nora has been asked whether she keeps track of the "history" of the characters, or just creates details as she goes. Edit

"I don't have an In Death bible, but I really should." - February 21, 2002[9]

"For the most part the In Deaths come as they come. I know some stuff that's going to come out or build as the series progresses. But I don't plot out specifics in advance." - July 26, 2002[10]

"Part of the fun of writing the In Death series is discovering the layers of the characters. I know some stuff, discover others. And when I discover, it leads to more." - June 18, 2003[11]

"As for the minor characters in the In Deaths, they just evolve, layer by layer. I didn't, and don't, have a master plan." - August 16, 2003[12]

"I really don't know for certain, at least not every time, what direction the next In Death will take. I'll probably know some of the layers, especially if I've started to peel one or two back in the previous book, but I don't know exactly what's what until I sit down to start."-September 21, 2003[13]

"I really deal with the In Death series one book at a time. There will be things planned, now and then, but usually, it's one book, which leads to the next."-November 13, 2004[14]

"I have a basic premise for the murders/murderer in the In Death I'll be starting next. The rest, as it goes in my process, will unfold as the story does."-November 18, 2005[15]

On adding details from previous books into the current one: Edit

"It's a constant challenge with a series like this to weave in enough character and place information for the first time reader without boring the long-time reader of the series." - February 14, 2006[16]

On whether she's as specific as some authors who keep track of minute character details: Edit

"You probably won't find out Eve's elementary school. It's unlikely to have any impact on a story line. That's why lots of the info writers know, or even speculate on, regarding characters stay off page." - February 25, 2006[17]

When asked if she has a layout for Eve and Roarke's bedroom, and whether she laughs at fans for nitpicking details: Edit

"I can see Eve's and Roarke's bedroom in my head. Can't write about it if I can't see it. Don't have anything on paper but the words. And yes, I roll my eyes and laugh at you." - July 23, 2004[18]

Is the In Death series based on research or imagination? Edit

"I guess my 2059 is a combination of research and imagination--heavy on the imagination." - September 16, 2006[19]

When asked which is harder, developing Eve's personal life, or developing the mystery, Nora responded: Edit

"Both aspects of the In Death books are a challenge--wouldn't hardly be worth writing if they weren't. It requires a lot of planning and piecing together to develop a viable mystery, and considerable care to peel off another thin layer of Eve's personal life." - October 9, 2002[20]

On how long the next book might be: Edit

"The length of an In Death book will depend, each time, on the story and the demands of that story. It's just not possible to say." - February 5, 2003[21]

On why mistakes in earlier editions aren't corrected: Edit

"Even correcting reissues and subsequent printings costs. I suspect small mistakes remain in books because it's just a lot of trouble and expense to reformat and correct." - November 17, 2005[22]

On the scheduling for the In Death Series: Edit

"I don't have that much to do with scheduling. When we went to hardcover with the In Death series, the publisher worked really hard to create a schedule that accommodated my wishes for two books a year and a six-month turn around on paperback editions. Since I know my general publication schedule, I try to gear my writing schedule to match it." - November 16, 2006[23]

On how it feels to start a new "In Death" Edit

"I'm always happy to see what Eve and Roarke and the gang are up to." - September 27, 2006[24]

On how she feels about her characters: Edit

"The characters of the In Death series are very real for me. I know their personalities, speech patterns, moves, etc as well as I know my own, or those of my friends." - August 29, 2002[25]

On whether she uses ideas she hears from fans: Edit

"Well, Jamie, to tell you the truth, though I get a kick out of reading your different ideas and so on, I don't use them. It's a rare thing for me to have to hunt up an idea.

I think it's fun for you guys to play what if, and it's fun for me to watch. But when I play what if, they have to pay me.

That's why I'm the professional." - September 6, 2001[26]

On why she doesn't "just do what the fans want": Edit

"Well, this might be the core of it for me. The reader is allowed to see only what the story, the writer--both driven by the characters in my case--put on the page.

You are then, of course, free to like or dislike, to be satisfied or not.

This--have Roarke make more mistakes, face more challenges--runs along the same lines as when is Eve going to have a baby, why can't Eve have a baby, or here are ways that Eve could have a baby. It's not going to happen until it's time for it to happen as dictated by the story and the characters--and me." - February 5, 2004[27]

"But remember for every reader expressing an opinion to match yours, there are five readers with opposing opinions down various avenues. All which match their particular likes, dislikes, needs, fantasies, hopes, and so on.

And what you guys are discussing is all so subjective on top of it. You think he [Roarke] should meet more challenges. Personally I think he meets challenges in every book. He doesn't often fail because he doesn't often give up. This is an innate character trait of the man I've created.

You are, as every reader is, imo, absolutely free to express your opinion on a book, a character, a scene, a theme, a tone, a style. You're the reader--you invested in the book. You have the right to be dissatisfied and say so--and to say why.

But this doesn't mean I--or any writer--will then try to tailor a book, a scene, a character, a theme or her style to your wishes. Because then we'd be scrambling to do the same for all the other readers who've expressed their opinion and their wishes." - February 5, 2004[28]

"Let me give you another example. Recently I received a very articulate, intelligently written and thoughtful letter from a reader. She's a big fan of the series. However, she feels I've been softening up my main characters too much in the last couple of books. She wants them to have more of an edge--this is part of what appeals to her, and has from the start of the series.

She's right, in that I do feel Eve and Roarke have softened somewhat--they've evolved that way due to, imo, their relationship and feelings for each other. I don't agree that they've lost their edge, but they are more married, we could say. More used to each other's rhythm, and therefore, yes, a bit softer.

Other letters will state how much they enjoy watching this softening, this exposure of layers, both emotional and external.

So which view has it right? Both, because both take what they take from the story and want what they want. And are entitled.

But I can't possibly please both views. I can only write the story and the characters as I write them." - February 5, 2004[29]

On the "pace" of the books, and character/relationship development: Edit

"The In Deaths move slowly. We're not moving through a year in book time over a year in real time. This is a deliberate writer's choice. And while I realize some readers may very well become bored or impatient, I have to remain true to my own vision for the series.

From my own viewpoint there have been a number of big changes, and a lot of small ones that may or may not build to big ones. But the basic pattern--continuing characters in a police procedural with strong romantic elements--remains. We've seen the main characters evolve, and their marriage evolve--while each of them has dealt with difficult emotional blows. We've watched a fairly green uniform cop develop into a smart, fairly confident woman--with her own romantic relationship. New characters have been introduced, and either play important parts in the series, or in single books. We nudge into sub-characters' personal lives from time to time--if it has a part in the story, or adds something to the series.

But overall, it's as I said before. There won't be major disasters or changes or personal upheavals in every book. Just won't work that way for me, and I get last call." - October 1, 2003[30]

On Dedications in the "In Death" books Edit

Nora has only used a dedication for one "In Death" book, as of this time. 1999's Loyalty in Death. Here's why:

"The one and only In Death dedication was to a pal whose brother is a priest. She promised she'd get him to give me perpetual absolution if I dedicated an In Death to her.

Hey, good deal for me.

I don't, of haven't, done dedications there as a rule first because we were keeping a low profile initially, then because I have so many books out there anyway. You start to run out of friends and family after awhile--even a popular Irish Catholic girl such as myself." - February 24, 2002[31]

"The no dedications as a rule deal in the In Deaths is really just the way it happened." - August 27, 2002[32]

Fun Facts About the In Death Series Edit

"I initially began writing the In Death series under the name D.J. MacGregor--even have the first cover flap with that name. Right before publication, it was discovered that T. J. MacGregor was writing romantic suspense. So I had to make a quick change. Switched the initials and went to Robb." - March 17, 2002[33]

"There's no hidden meaning to the blue lady on the early In Death paperbacks. She just looked cool." - February 19, 2004[34]

When asked if her inspiration for using Tulla as the small town where Roarke's mother comes from was buying land near there: Edit

"I decided to use Tulla in the In Death after I bought the land. It's such a beautiful area, and I liked thinking Roarke's ancesters sprang from there."-October 16, 2003[35]

On "working titles" of the books and how they change in the final printing: Edit

"I'm waiting for my editor to let me know if I need to revise Relations In Death--which will need a new title, I'm told. Marketing and Sales said it made them think of SEXUAL relations. LOL. Those guys." - August 4, 2004[36]

"Relations In Death has become Origin in Death. I like it." - August 18, 2004[37]

The Original working title for Divided in Death was Liaison in Death--Liaison in Death became Divided In Death." - April 18, 2004[38]

2060 is an Olympic year: Edit

"If the Olympics fit into a story line, we'll see them." - August 9, 2004[39]

When asked why the In Deaths are most often found in the "romance" section of the bookstore, rather than "fiction" or "mystery": Edit

"Marketing has a large play in how a book's marketed. Makes sense. And my books, whatever the content, have a large Romance following. While some will say Fiction on the spine, you're going to find them in the Romance section of most bookstores. That's a bookseller's choice--because the biggest chunk of my audience will look there first." - April 18, 2004[40]

On why the In Death backlist in Hard Cover was discontinued: Edit

"The decision to stop--or at least postpone--publication of the In Death backlist in hardcover simply comes down to sales. Apparently they weren't selling very well, making it difficult for the publisher. I'm really sorry, as is the publisher, to disappoint those readers who wanted and bought the books in that form. I just wish there'd been more of you." - February 18, 2005[41]

"As far as I know, there aren't any plans right now to reissue the paperback original In Deaths in hardcover." - June 29, 2005[42]

The original working title of Born in Death was Beginning in Death. Edit

"Current wip--just started--is Beginning In Death." - May 17, 2005[43]

On her reaction to the other In Death covers from around the world: Edit

"My first reaction to the Hungarian covers was: Oh God, my eyes, my eyes! Then, I just had to laugh." - September 14, 2006[44]

On whether there's still football (as opposed to Arena Ball) in the future: Edit

"I'm sure there's still football--I just haven't written about it." - February 24, 2005[45]

On whether she'd consider reincarnation in the In Deaths: Edit

"No current plans to play with reincarnation in the ID series, but you never know--esp if we continue to do the anthologies." - November 20, 2006[46]

When asked where she got the name of the drink "Blue Meanie" in Portrait: Edit

"I don't think it's a spoiler to say I got the name Blue Meanie for a drink In Death from the Beatles." - February 27, 2003[47]

When asked if she took the name of one of the murder victims in Portrait from Star Trek's Dr. Sulu: Edit

"I did use ST's Mr. Sulu's name. I always thought it was a cool name. Too bad about the kid, though." - February 28, 2003[48]


What is the difference between an "Icee" and a "Water Ice" in regards to the In Death series? Edit

"I dunno, I'd think an icee is flavored (i.e. cherry icee) and water ice just sounds like cup of chipped ice--which could be refreshing. Roarke probably knows the plain ice is better for him, but would likely buy a cherry icee for Eve." - August 9, 2006[49]


On JD Robb Edit

"I have signed my name wrong in books. Most likely it'll be signing NR in a JDR book, then having to add the JDR. I guess this is because while I love writing the In Death series, I don't think of myself as J.D. Robb. Personally, that is. If someone shouted out, hey J.D., I wouldn't look around, if you get me." - November 18, 2002[50]

On whether she ever has any problems with JD Robb having an attitude when she signs books: Edit

"If J.D. cops an attitude, I just forge her name." - November 9, 2004[51]

On whether she spells out "Nora Roberts" or "JD Robb" with her sparkler on the 4th of July: Edit

"I just write Nora. Or various obscenities." - July 1, 2004[52]

When asked if it's ok to resort to smacking someone who doesn't like Nora writing as JD Robb: Edit

"You really shouldn't resort to violence when confronted with someone who doesn't like the In Death series. Some people just don't go for it, and that's okay. If it helps you can think, smugly: Their loss." - January 26, 2005[53]

On whether she's supposed to be Eve in the latest JD Robb series of back-cover pictures: Edit

"Nope, not Eve. Me as J.D. Eve's taller, thinner and (choke) younger than me." - May 26, 2006[54]

"Amazing shot, isn't it? My editor/publisher knew exactly what she wanted--and I had the coat. Love that coat. The photographer GOT it, and we put it all together. Just a really fun, different, creative author shot." - January 11, 2006[55]


Nora With The "In Death" Gang Edit

When asked who she would dress as if she had to dress as any one of her characters: Edit

"If I had to dress as a character, I'd probably take Eve--that way I could wear a weapon and have Roarke pick the outfit to go with it." - July 16, 2004[56]

Who would Nora have dinner with if she could choose? Real or fictional: Edit

"Hmm, maybe I'd have dinner with Eve and Roarke. But I wouldn't ask the baby question either." - September 5, 2003[57]

On whether she uses any of the slang that her characters use: Edit

"While I've been known to use wonky, when applicable, I don't think I use some of the more character specific words in my every day life." - December 7, 2006[58]

On whether she's as "observant" as Eve is: Edit

"I'm not nearly as observant as Eve, and not nearly as able to retain all those little details. I'm fascinated that cops are and do." - September 21, 2005[59]


When asked who is more like her, Eve or Roarke? Edit

"I have to say Eve and Roarke are like themselves." - October 25, 2006[60]

Does Roarke have a current version of Nora's car in his garage? Edit

"I'd say Roarke has the updated version of the Mercedes Kompressor in his garage." - June 22, 2006[61]

On whether she'd rather live in Terry Pratchett's Discworld or her own In Death future: Edit

"If I lived in Discworld, I think I'd liked to be on the senior staff of Unseen University, but I'd probably stick with Eve's NY. I know my way around better, and maybe I'd hang out with her and Roarke." - September 15, 2006[62]

When asked if her "politics" are infused in her writing: Edit

"Some of my politics may be reflected in some characters, and other characters may have politics that oppose mine. It just depends on what works for the story." - July 19, 2005[63]

On whether she prefers NYC in present day, or her NYC 2059: Edit

"I like NY just fine as it is now, but wouldn't mind being around in 2059 to see how it goes." - April 7, 2004[64]

When asked if she needs to "cool off" after writing a love scene: Edit

"I actually don't have to cool off after writing a hot Eve and Roarke scene. But then again, I don't feel guilty after killing someone in a brutal fashion in a scene either." - August 18, 2003[65]

When asked who she'd pick to be stuck in an elevator for five hours with her: Edit

"If I were stuck in an elevator for five hours, we'd probably all be dead, so I'd pick James Bond, McGyver, Eve and Roarke and Einstein. Surely with those five we'd get the hell out of there in under ten minutes." - January 22, 2004[66] Edit

When asked if she misses Roarke when she's away from him: Edit

"Actually, I'm never really away from Roarke. That's the beauty." - June 26, 2004[67]


On whether her husband (BW) is jealous of Roarke: Edit

"BW and Roarke are good pals. No jealousy issues there." - September 21, 2005[68]

Is there a cure for an "In Death" addiction? Edit

"Sorry, there is no cure for In-Death-itis. Take two books, drink lots of fluids and call me in the morning." - November 15, 2002[69]

What Question would Eve ask Nora if she got the chance in SQ on ADWOFF? Edit

"If Eve could pop on here and ask me a question, she'd probably ask me what the hell I'm doing playing around here when I should be writing her next book."

What Questions would Roarke ask Nora if he got the chance in SQ on ADWOFF? Edit

"I'm sure Roarke would ask why I work so hard, and suggest I take a little break."-November 26/27, 2002[70]

On whether her husband reads the In Death series, and if he's as anxious for the next installment as the fans are: Edit

" BW does read the In Deaths. He gets an ARC, but NOBODY'S as anxious as you guys."-February 22, 2003[71]

Footnotes Edit

  1. Roberts, N. (2008). Nora Roberts Website. Retrieved March 2008 from The J.D. Robb Page on NoraRoberts.com.
  2. Roberts, N. (February 8, 2003). Stoopid Questions for Nora, Part VII! A Day Without French Fries Message Board. Retrieved March 2008 from ADWOFF.
  3. Roberts, N. (June 18, 2003). Stoooopid Questions for Nora, Part IX!!! A Day Without French Fries Message Board. Retrieved March 2008 from ADWOFF.
  4. Roberts, N. (February 4, 2004). Stooooooopid Questions for Nora, Part XII! A Day Without French Fries Message Board. Retrieved March 2008 from ADWOFF.
  5. Roberts, N. (March 15, 2005). Stooooopid Questions for Nora, Part XVI. A Day Without French Fries Message Board. Retrieved March 2008 from ADWOFF.
  6. Roberts, N. (July 19, 2005). Stooooopid Questions for Nora, Part XVII. A Day Without French Fries Message Board. Retrieved March 2008 from ADWOFF.
  7. Roberts, N. (February 5, 2010). SQ XXVII for Nora. A Day Without French Fries Message Board. Retrieved April 6, 2010 from ADWOFF
  8. Roberts, N. (September 22, 2002). The Official Really STOOOOOPID Questions for Nora, Part V. A Day Without French Fries Message Board. Retrieved March 2008 from ADWOFF
  9. Roberts, N. (February 21, 2002). Stooooopid Questions for Nora, Part Tres :-D. A Day Without French Fries Message Board. Retrieved March 2008 from ADWOFF
  10. Roberts, N. (July 26, 2002). The Official Really STOOOOOOPID Questions for Nora, Part IV. A Day Without French Fries Message Board. Retrieved March 2008 from ADWOFF
  11. Roberts, N. (June 18, 2003). Stoooopid Questions for Nora, Part IX!!! A Day Without French Fries Message Board. Retrieved March 2008 from ADWOFF
  12. Roberts, N. (August 16, 2003). Stooooopid Questions for Nora, part X!! A Day Without French Fries Message Board. Retrieved March 2008 from ADWOFF
  13. Ibid. ADWOFF
  14. Roberts, N. (November 13, 2004). Stooooopid Questions for Nora, Part XV. A Day Without French Fries Message Board. Retrieved March 2008 from ADWOFF
  15. Roberts, N. (November 18, 2005). Stoooopid Questions for Nora, Part XIX! A Day Without French Fries Message Board. Retrieved March 2008 from ADWOFF
  16. Roberts, N. (February 14, 2006). StoooooooooooPID Questions for Nora, Part XX!! A Day Without French Fries Message Board. Retrieved March 2008 from ADWOFF
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  27. Roberts, N. (February 5, 2004). Roarke too Perfect??. A Day Without French Fries Message Board. Retrieved April 6, 2010 from ADWOFF
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