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A Little of My Story
WHO IS LIZ LAWLESS?
Creativity and Book Catalyst
Although many of you know me either as a long-time friend, school, church, arts, diversity, or political volunteer, I met others of you as clients, sponsors, or partners through one of my professional business entities: Lawless And Company, Cowboys of Color Rodeos, Wild West Diversity, ICREA, Inc our family education nonprofit or more recently Adriel Publishing or Book Catalyst Publishing.
A few of you know most of my story, but there are many of you who only know a piece of it. Of course, I cannot tell all of here, but I do want to share a little more of my background so you get to know me, understand that my expertise comes from multiple sides of the book business, and also so anyone new that joins our community in the future might have a clearer picture of the person who is leading, seeking their trust and more importantly asking for their money.
So where to start? At the end or at the beginning? I think I will give a quick overview then share some of my history over the next few months.
For you left-brain people I will share some facts first then fill in some details for the right-brain readers (so you can continue reading after the stats):
Book Business = 48 years
Serial Entrepreneur/Trainer with 8 Brands Created, Managed, Grown = 33 years
Self-Publisher = Author 7 Books, 2x #1 Amazon Best-Sellers, 3 in works = 29 years
Amazon Shop/Publisher = 16 years
Ingram Wholesale Distributor = 9 years
Apple Developer = 8 years
Barnes & Noble Publisher = 8 years
Partner Publisher = 8 years
103 Straight #1 Amazon Best-Sellers for clients in 8 years
I have always been a reader from my earliest memories I loved books, but I was not a writer in my adolescent years. Even now I consider myself a CREATIVE! first then a serial entrepreneur, then an author, publisher, podcast host, speaker, and now I guess coach.
I don’t wake up every morning having to write, but I do wake up every morning needing to create something. I consider myself a Biz4Creatives Activist. I work as a Creativity & Book Catalyst: that means … I make things happen!
Today I have over 48 years of experience in the book publishing and creative services business (or biz as I like to refer to it). My parents opened a brick and mortar Bookstore in 1972 when I was 11 years old (I only recently realized what that foundation did for me).
I graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Speech 1983 (I went to college and they taught me how to write), I worked for the College newspaper for 3 years honing my craft first as a reporter, then as an associate editor and ending as the copy editor in the days before computers. Because of this training “I NEVER EXPERIENCE WRITER’S BLOCK OR BLANK PAGE SYNDROME!” I can always start with Who, What, Where, When, Why, and How when writing and I usually start with a Table of Contents as I mostly write non-fiction: Creativity, Western History, and Biblical.
I have been on all sides of the book business and learned most of it for myself before sharing the knowledge with others. As I mentioned, I was an entrepreneur first then a self-publisher then a partner publishing consultant, and now a publishing coach.
After college, I returned to Dallas and worked for a few years before taking control of my own destiny and opening a Creative Services firm providing newsletters, annual reports, brochures, and other collateral materials to arts, education, and economic development clients while officing with a printer (more foundational knowledge). At the same time, I did training of managers and taught continuing education courses at the local junior college and Southern Methodist University where I had achieved a Master of Liberal Arts (1988) a few years earlier. After adding advertising, marketing, events, media relations, project management, and publicity to my services as my client list grew. I gain skills on the job (as they say) and built a diverse base of skills, knowledge, and experience that has helped me create eight successful brands over the years; and it certainly hasn’t hurt my book business to have this broad marketing background.
After pursuing traditional publishing, I ended up a few years later self-publishing and never looked back (I will tell that story next week). After 25 years in the creative advertising, marketing, and public relations biz, a request from a friend to help her produce a #1 Amazon best-selling ebook (in 8 weeks) and having another friend drastically taken advantage of by a Vanity Press, I became a partner publisher in 2013.
When the friend stood on stage in front of 500+ people and shared her #1 Amazon Best-Selling ebook and paperback (we went to #1 in 8 hours the first day,) I began helping other people publish – first non-fiction, then children’s books, and then a few fiction books – that is how I created 103 Straight #1 Amazon Best-Sellers and counting.
Next week I will share my first direct adventure in publishing. Publishing is an exciting journey and I hope that you are on your own journey and that we can continue it together.