Liz Berry co-founded and co-operates 1,001 Dark Nights Press and Blue Box Press, which are marketing companies that work to increase awareness of best-selling author’s brands and expand their readership in the romance genre.
Since its first release in 2014, Liz and her company have been responsible for selling over 4,000,000 units across all projects. By utilizing author-to-author and author-to-reader relationships—along with innovative marketing concepts—Liz and the team will continue to explore cutting-edge ways to help authors’ grow.
Liz and her team have worked with some of the most successful romance authors including Sawyer Bennett, Jennifer Armintrout, Carly Phillips, Jennifer Probst, Kristen Proby, and Rachel Van Dyken. Listen in to hear how Liz has impacted the romance genre and helped authors expand their reach and readership.
You will want to hear this episode if you are interested in…
- How Evil Eye Concepts came into existence [3:05]
- Learn more about Liz Berry [5:38]
- What Liz does for the authors they represent [6:59]
- Learn more about 1,001 Dark Nights Press [8:43]
- Learn more about Liz’s second imprint, Blue Box Press [12:15]
- Hitting the USA Today Best Seller list [14:46]
- The behind-the-scenes aspects of publishing a book [18:21]
- What does Evil Eye look for in an author? [23:01]
- Liz’s advice for an aspiring author [26:53]
- What this journey has taught Liz [32:50]
- What is up next for Evil Eye Concepts? [34:52]
- What got Liz in the mindset for success [36:15]
The concept of 1,001 Dark Nights and Blue Box Press
Liz created a concept she calls “innovative strategic marketing.” It utilizes cross-marketing with other authors to elevate everyone’s brand. How does it work?
1,000 Dark Nights is a play off of the Arabian Nights story. It introduces a time traveler who gets trapped as Scheherazade—and to escape—she has to tell a different story every night. That’s the forward to every single Dark Nights novella. Each novella is a standalone romance story within each author’s realm/series that has its own “Happily Ever After.” It’s an audition for readers to read an author they haven’t read before. If they like the story, they can go read that author’s book(s).
Readers are inundated with the books available in the market. No one knows where to start. 1,001 Dark Nights is a vetting process that helps people decide whether or not to read a new author. $2.99 is a reasonable amount of money for people to spend to get the satisfaction of a happily ever after and a taste of a new author.
Each author cross-markets with each other with the novellas. Blue Box Press is a similar concept, except they partner with authors to create entire novels and series. They study each author and define how they can innovate within that market share and raise their sales and brand awareness.
The behind-the-scenes of publishing a book
When creating a book from start to finish, every person plays an important role. It all starts with the author, who has to write the book. Simultaneously, the publisher has to design and create the cover and put the book up for pre-order. Then the editorial team (content editor, copy editor, proofreader, formatters, etc) works their magic.
Retail platforms must be chosen. Marketing is launched. You have to source, buy, and brand merchandise. Meanwhile, a publicist is reaching out to the media to get the author on as many platforms as possible. That’s all before the book goes up for sale. Afterward, you have to keep marketing, run social media campaigns, and capitalize on what’s happening organically. It takes a lot of work and energy to hit best-selling lists—and it’s what Liz loves to do.
Liz’s advice for an aspiring author
Liz shares some sage advice for aspiring authors:
- Compare you to you. Authors are always comparing themselves to each other. Is what you wrote today better than yesterday? What did you do to sell your book better than the last one?
- Don’t “write by committee.” As authors start to realize more success, they read more reviews, adopt beta readers, gain social media followers, and add more people to their team. They listen to all of the voices telling them what to write and how to write. Suddenly, their stories become far from what makes them special. You have to write the stories only you can. Don’t write what you think will sell.
- Consistency is key. Writing is a discipline, it’s not an obsession. Be consistent with writing, scheduling, and publishing. Give your readers what they’re expecting when they’re expecting it.
What do 1,001 Dark Nights and Blue Box Press look for in authors? What has Liz learned from her entrepreneurial journey? Listen to the whole episode to learn more about Liz’s unique marketing tactic for romance novelists.
Resources & People Mentioned
Connect with Liz Berry
Liz Berry co-founded and co-operates 1,001 Dark Nights Press and Blue Box Press — marketing companies that work to increase bestselling author brands and expand readership within the romance genre. Since its first release in 2014, 1001 Dark Nights has sold over 4,000,000 units across its various innovative projects. Utilizing author-to-author and author-to-reader relationships, along with innovative marketing concepts, Liz and the team will continue to explore cutting edge concepts well into the future.
Liz has a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Georgia and also studied international marketing at the University of Innsbruck in Austria. Both areas of study have allowed her to gain twenty-plus years of experience in the ever-changing marketing field.
She proudly served on the Education Committee for the Smithsonian Libraries Advisory Board, and, with her husband, novelist Steve Berry, operates History Matters, a non-profit foundation dedicated to historic preservation. For more information, visit 1001DarkNights.com, TheBlueBoxPress.com and History-Matters.org.
Guests on the Mitlin Money Mindset Show are not affiliated with CWM, LLC, and opinions expressed herein may not be representative of CWM, LLC. CWM, LLC is not responsible for the guest’s content linked on this site.
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