Book Writing & Publishing

{The Blog}

Ep 83: Self-Publishing Cookbooks and Children's Books

The time has come! We're finally able to move on from the days of traditional offset printing to print-on-demand options when it comes to children's books and cookbooks. Whether you're contemplating watercolor illustrations for a children's book or publishing a mouthwatering cookbook, this episode is for you! 



  • Managing the balance between print quality, profitability, and the different book distribution methods at your disposal. 
  • The nitty-gritty of offset printing vs. the economics of self-publishing 
  • The pros and cons of overseas printing 
  • The real costs of self-distribution
  • Demystifying the printing process to ensure your images pop off the page. 



Publish A Profitable Book discount: For a limited time, we're celebrating the updates to the Publish A Profitable Book course with 15% off! Use code PUBLISH15 at checkout (applies to pay-in-full AND payment plan options!). 


Continue Reading...

EP 82: Memoir On Submission with Diana Naranjo

The story is always unfolding...

In this episode of Write the Damn Book Already, I spoke with Diana Naranjo about her memoir (which is currently on submission). She recounts a pivotal moment where a professional connection with author Abraham Verghese (Cutting for Stone, The Covenant of Water) led to her first agent connection.



  • How Diana learned to write after completing her first draft
  • The nuanced difference between memoir and creative non-fiction
  • Her strategies for finding agents and the value of learning from the author community's experiences. 
  • The challenge of identifying as "a writer" 



Instagram: @dnaranjo


Tell Me Everything: The Story of a Private Investigation by Erika Krouse


In a Not So Perfect World by Neely Tubati Alexander

The Covenant of Water and Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese

Everyone But Myself by...

Continue Reading...

Ep 81: Permission to Do What You Want as an Author

Key Takeaways:

  • It's important to give yourself permission to try different approaches and strategies when writing and publishing a book.

  • Don't feel pressured to follow the advice of others if it doesn't align with your goals or preferences.

  • Consistency and courage are key to finding success in your writing journey.



In this episode of the Write the Damn Book Already podcast, we discuss the importance of giving yourself permission to do what feels right for your book, regardless of the advice and opinions of others. Let's dive in and explore the power of embracing your own path.


Embracing Your Unique Approach

In the world of book writing and publishing, there is no shortage of advice and opinions on the "right" way to do things. From running ads to choosing the perfect marketing strategy, it can be overwhelming to navigate through the sea of recommendations. However, it's crucial to remember that what works for one person may not work for another....

Continue Reading...

Ep 80: How to Avoid Copyright Infringement (and Other Listener Questions)

In this solo episode of Write the Damn Book Already, I respond to listener's questions, including:

  • How do I make sure I'm not infringing on someone else's copyright by referencing their advice, book, or insights in my book? 
  • Why is publishing so complicated?
  • Why do I become an insecure mess whenever I sit down to write?



Cory Goodrich's book, Folksong: A Ballad of Death, Discovery, and DNA

Write the Damn Book Already is a weekly podcast featuring interviews with authors as well as updates and insights on writing craft and the publishing industry.

Available wherever podcasts are available:
Apple Podcasts

Let's Connect!

Email the show: elizabeth [at] elizabethlyons [dot] com

The podcast is a proud affiliate partner of Bookshop, working to support local, independent bookstores.

To see all the ways we can work together to get your book written and published, visit

Continue Reading...

Ep 79: Querying Literary Agents with Lauren Kay

Lauren Kay's young adult debut novel, We Ship It, was a dream come true, but it wasn't easy to get there. Now, she helps other writers achieve the same joy, minus the roadblocks. Having secured eight agent offers in a month,  she works with authors dreaming about a traditional publishing deal to help them write irresistible query letters.



  • The 7-year path to her first novel, for which she received a 6-figure advance (best quote: "Lightning speed in this industry is 7 years.")
  • The importance of transparency in the book industry when it comes to timelines, sales figures, and overall expectations
  • The idea of an author “deserving” their lead author status (I hadn't heard this before, and loved the discussion around it!)
  • How changing our expectations as authors can lead to far better results 
  • The “before” and “after” of publishing
  • Top mistakes to avoid when writing query letters + how to...
Continue Reading...

Ep 78: Traditional Publishing Lessons with Neely Tubati Alexander

Neely Tubati Alexander's second novel, In a Not So Perfect World (March 2024, Harper Perennial), was noted a "Best Romance to Read in 2024" by Cosmopolitan and received starred reviews from both Publishers Weekly and Kirkus.   

In her second appearance on the Write the Damn Book Already podcast, we discussed her two-book deal with HarperCollins, and how her writing process and industry perspective shifted from Book 1 to Book 2.


  • What changed the most between books 1 and 2 when it came to her writing  and marketing processes
  • How Neely's expectations for book sales change from book to book
  • The benefit of being a debut author versus releasing subsequent books 
  • How Neely “protects the bubble” in order not to be influenced by others’ opinions so she can tell the story she most wants to tell
  • Whether she reads her reviews (and when), and which she pays strong attention to (and even allows to...
Continue Reading...

Ep 77: Indie Publishing with Fiction Author Kathryn Biel

Armed with quick wit, relatable characters, themes of resilience, and always a happy ending, award-winning and USA Today Bestselling author Kathryn R. Biel writes comfort reads.

In the most recent episode of Write the Damn Book Already, we chatted about her journey thus far as an indie author. 


  • Kathryn's favorite part of self-publishing
  • The type of opportunity that would compel her to consider a traditional publishing deal after self-publishing 20 books
  • Her experience selling books via a Shopify store and TikTok shop
  • How she defines success for herself (and how that barometer has changed over the years)


Balancing drama and angst with laughter and love, Kathryn weaves stories that will whisk you away for a few hours and have you rooting for the underdog, whether it's through sports romance, romantic comedy, or lighter women's fiction. 

By day, Kathryn is a pediatric physical therapist and Chief Domestic Officer of the Biel...

Continue Reading...

Ep 76: When Going Viral Goes Very (Very) Wrong

These days, almost everyone dreams of having a post or reel go viral. That is, until they do.

At that point, they realize it doesn't often have the "magic bullet" benefits we're led to believe. At best, it has a neutral impact, and at worst, it can go very (very) wrong before you have a chance to get your arms around it. (Thinking you can get your arms around it is often your first mistake!)

But also, everything that goes "wrong" in this life brings with it an opportunity to see something differently (oftentimes, that something is oneself)  and to evolve as a human being.

In this episode of Write the Damn Book Already, I share the top 7 lessons I learned from recently going viral on Threads. I've often said if I ever went viral, it would be for tripping over a pebble or walking straight into a freshly cleaned glass wall, and in this case, I think I would have preferred either of those! 

This happened thanks to a taken-out-of-context writing suggestion that was...

Continue Reading...

Ep 75: Writing Novels in the Operating Room with Elle Evans

Elle Evans is an anesthesiologist and a novelist whose debut novel, Wedding Issues, comes out April 2, 2024 with Zibby Books. And was this ever a fascinating conversation!


  • The first book Elle wrote (that was never officially published, even with the best title ever) 
  • Elle's writing process, including how she sets goals and deadlines 
  • The probable stop on the publishing journey she specifically advises writers to “buckle up” for 
  • How her first two novels ended up "dead on submission" (and what she's planning for them now!)
  • How she's coordinating  book launch activities with her operating room schedule 
  • Her process for letting go of one book’s characters in order to start fresh on another
  • Her unique perspective when it comes to title/cover changes by a publisher



A Boston native, Elle Evans spent five years in Nashville soaking up sweet Southern hospitality and even sweet iced tea. She...

Continue Reading...

Ep 74: First comes publisher, then comes agent, with Julie Chavez

In the latest episode of  Write the Damn Book Already, I spoke with Julie Chavez, author of the incredibly well-received memoir, Everyone But Myself   (January 2024, Zibby Books).

After Julie's life experience turned into a book idea,  she wrote 30,000 words and thought that surely it was a complete, publishable book. Newsflash: It wasn’t. But she stuck with it, and within a few weeks of launch, it became a USA Today Bestseller.



  • Why being naive is the greatest gift for authors sharing vulnerable stories 

  • Thoughts on why aspiring authors don’t understand the challenges involved in book writing (it's one of the things this podcast hopes to rectify!)

  • Metrics authors use to determine “success” (including Julie's) + an exploration of the “machine” side versus the human side of writing

  • How to trust when you've healed "enough” to write about challenges

  • The...

Continue Reading...
1 2 3 4