As a freelance journalist, Riess' work has appeared in newspapers and magazines across Canada, including such publications as Canadian Geographic and the Globe and Mail. She has travelled across North America working on documentaries that have aired on A&E Biography, History Television and CBC. And her work has sent her to a remote village in China and on a 1,600 kilometre dog sled race called the Yukon Quest. She has interviewed FBI agents in Texas and taken phone calls from celebrities, such as Paul Anka.
To End a Conversation, her first collection of poetry, was featured on CBC and on The Writer's Almanac with Garrison Keillor. Her poetry has also appeared in a number of Canadian journals, including Descant, Grain and The Windsor Review.
The author of the bestselling Saskatchewan Book of Everything, she received the Outstanding Young Alumni Award from the University of Saskatchewan and was shortlisted for a Saskatchewan Lieutenant Governor’s Arts Award and a YWCA Woman of Distinction Award. In 2011, she was a CTV National Fellow at the Banff World Media Festival. And in 2003, she was awarded the C. Irwin McIntosh Journalism Prize from the School of Journalism at the University of Regina.