Emily Liebert, 7 Time Bestselling Author | How to Write an Award Winning Novel | SSP Interview

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USA Today bestselling author Emily Liebert was born and raised in New York City. She attended Horace Mann School and Smith College, where she graduated with a B.A. in English Language & Literature.

After college, Emily landed her first job as an Executive Assistant at ABC News, where she helped produce television specials for Peter Jennings Reporting.

Emily thrived during her time at ABC, though — in her heart — she knew that writing was her true calling. In 2000, she was appointed Editor-in-Chief of The WAG magazine — a luxury lifestyle publication covering Westchester and Fairfield Counties. During Emily’s five-year tenure, she wrote hundreds of articles, including celebrity profiles, travel, fashion, and beauty.

Ready to freelance full-time, Emily left The WAG and began composing lifestyle and travel pieces for The Huffington Post, Oprah.com, Elite Traveler, Robb Report, Gotham, and Cottages & Gardens.

In 2009, Emily edited Kerry Kennedy’s New York Times bestseller Being Catholic Now: Prominent Americans Talk About Change in the Church and the Quest for Meaning.

The following year, Emily published her first book, Facebook Fairytales, which was a media sensation that sparked intense conversation about the positive power of Facebook. Shortly thereafter, Emily was hired by Microsoft as the spokesperson for Bing’s partnership with Facebook and appeared in 30+ television and radio spots for the brand, which garnered exceptional ratings.

Emily is the author of six novels: YOU KNEW ME WHEN (2013), WHEN WE FALL (2014), THOSE SECRETS WE KEEP (2015), and SOME WOMEN (2016), all with Penguin Random House, and PRETTY REVENGE (2019) and PERFECTLY FAMOUS (2020), both with Simon & Schuster.

She’s been featured often in the press, by outlets such as: Today Show, The Rachael Ray Show, Anderson Cooper, FOX News, Good Day New York, Oprah Radio, Martha Stewart Radio, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, InStyle, People StyleWatch, Good Housekeeping, OK!, Nylon, Woman’s World, WWD, Woman’s Day, The New York Post, The Washington Post, The New York Daily News, The Chicago Tribune, Boston Herald, People.com, and The Huffington Post.

In addition to writing novels, Emily pens a travel and books column in each issue of Westport Magazine, for which she’s the Books Correspondent. She also teaches Pure Barre classes and enjoys traveling and cooking. Emily lives with her husband, Lewis, and their two sons, Jax and Hugo, in Westport, CT.

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He sits down with leaders and mentors and unpacks their story to help pass those lessons onto others through both experiences and tactical strategy for business professionals, entrepreneurs and everyone in between.

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book, people, writing, write, life, brand, Kerry Kennedy, magazine, famous, career, Emily, podcast, freelance, penguin random house, women, pivoted, world, stories, makeup, question


Emily Liebert, Scott D Clary


Scott D Clary  00:06

Welcome to the success story podcast. I’m your host, Scott Clary. On this podcast I have candid interviews with execs, celebrities, politicians and other notable figures, all who have achieved success through both wins and losses. To learn more about their life, their ideas and their insights, I sit down with leaders and mentors and unpack their story to help pass those lessons on to others through both experiences and tactical strategy for business professionals, entrepreneurs and everyone in between. Without further ado, another episode of the success story podcast. Thanks again for joining me, I am sitting down with Emily Leibert was who was born and raised in New York City. She is a seven time best selling author. She has an incredible career. I want to just run through some of the highlights of her career but then I’m gonna pass it over to her to really just dive into how she got to where she is today. So she has been featured in various outlets such as today’s show, Rachel ratio, Anderson Cooper, Fox, Oprah radio, Martha Stewart, New York Times, Wall Street Journal and style people style watch Good Housekeeping. Okay, nylon woman’s world, New York Post New York Daily Chicago Tribune, Boston Herald people calm, Huffington Post, all the major outlets. She has had an incredible career. As you know, in 2000, she was starting as editor in chief of the WAG magazine, a luxury lifestyle publication covering Westchester and Fairfield counties. She was there for five years, and she wrote hundreds of articles including celebrity profiles, travel, fashion and beauty. And then in 2009, she was she edited Kerry Kennedy’s New York Times bestseller being Catholic. Now prominent Americans talk about change in the church, and the quest for meaning. And after 2009 is when Emily started her first, her first book, Facebook fairytales, which was a media sensation that sparked intense conversation about the power, the positive power of Facebook. Shortly thereafter, Emily was hired by Microsoft as a spokesperson for beings partnership with Facebook, and appeared in 30, plus television and radio spots for the brand, which was an incredible run. And then she went on to write apologies, six, six novels total, which led to you know, her career where it is today as a writer, as a personality, as somebody who’s written on and spoken on a variety of different topics, both in her career and then obviously now what she’s doing with her own personal brand. I’m very excited to learn about, you know, how you got to where you are today, because it seems like a very interesting career path that led you to write novels work with some of the largest brands be featured in literally the, the, the who’s who of where you want to be featured in terms of, you know, all these different press outlets and whatnot. So very, very excited to unpack that and, and understand your story. So thank you.


Emily Liebert  03:07

Thank you for having me. It’s really exciting. And actually, when you read back all those things, sounds really impressive. But I’m sort of like, who is that person? Like, cuz I really do all those things.


Scott D Clary  03:21

And you look back, it’s me also, when


Emily Liebert  03:24

you sort of like, read it all together, like that sounds like wow.


Scott D Clary  03:30

Listen, it’s well deserved you’ve done you’ve done a ton of stuff. And I get it like it’s like, over your career. It’s true. You’ve you’ve gotten into editing and publishing into writing into brand evangelism. And obviously marketing, like, you know, sort of transcends transcends all these different fields. But just like start from the beginning, how, what did you start off first, when you got your career started?


Emily Liebert  03:54

Well, when I graduated from college, I was very fortunate to get my first job at ABC News, working for Peter Jennings. And I knew that I always wanted to tell stories and be in the journalism world in some way. I was an English language and literature major, I had always loved telling stories from a very early age. And so I got that job. And I worked in television news for a little over two years. And I think by that point, I looked up the ladder. And I realized that I didn’t want those jobs that were above me. It wasn’t a career that I saw myself following long term. And what I really wanted to do was write so I applied to a bunch of magazines to become an editor. And at the time, I was moving out of New York City to Westchester, which is a suburb of New York City. And there was a magazine called the WAG, which is a luxury life Style magazine covers travel beauty, celebrities, food, all that fashion, all that fun stuff. And I was hired to be the editor of the magazine. I was 24 years old. I had never worked at a magazine before. And I was basically hired to be the editor in chief magazine by a woman named Marianne Lieber, who you will notice had the same last name as I do, but I did not know her at the time. She is now my mother and


Scott D Clary  05:33

oh, okay, I understand. I was gonna say, is this just like, nepotism?


Emily Liebert  05:38

No, it was that I met her. But it was not a coincidence that we had the same last name, I ended up eventually marrying her son, although when she hired me, we were struggling, okay. And she hired me and I was the editor in chief of the web for five years. I did everything for the magazine, I assign the articles, you know how to small staff went to all the events. It was really fun, interviewed tons of celebrities for the cover articles. And it was really a great time. I loved doing that job. And I ultimately after five years, decided that it was time to pass the baton on because I felt that I had done everything I could there magazine. And I spent a couple of yours freelance writing, I was a travel writer for many years. I wrote for Rob record, elite traveler cottages and gardens, I continued to write celebrity profiles, food, fashion, beauty, all of that for multiple national magazines. And then it came a time where two things happened. One, freelance writing sort of started taking a downturn, and people were bringing a lot of the freelance writing in half, it was a freelance anymore, they were having their editors write articles, rather than paying freelancers, a lot of money. And I sort of came to the conclusion that I wanted to sink my teeth into bigger, longer term projects, rather than just constantly turning over multiple articles a week. So I had the amazing opportunity to edit Kerry Kennedy’s book, Kerry Kennedy is Robert Kennedy, Robert metal Kennedy’s daughter, one of their daughters, one of their many children. And that really introduced me to the book world. And I, after I was done editing that book for Kerry, I said to myself, I want to do this for myself, I want to write a book. And so I wrote a novel, which has never seen the light of day. And I was fortunate enough to get an agent with that novel, which it sounds like 123, I just got an agent. But you actually have to write a whole novel when you’re writing fiction. Unlike nonfiction, where you can write a proposal, and a couple of sample chapters with fiction, it’s so based on your writing, that they need to see that you can actually write the whole book. So I wrote the whole book, I sent it to a cold queried about 80 agents. And I was very, very lucky. And I ended up getting I think, three offers, which is a lot. And I went with this agent who I loved. And as we started editing this novel together before she submitted it, I came up with the idea for what was actually my first book, which is called Facebook fairy tale. And that was a book with the 25 Amazing stories that came from Facebook connections. And it was very timely because this was in 2009. And Facebook was just sort of exploding in the media and in the world outside of colleges. And I was very fortunate that Facebook supported the book, not financially, but got behind me. And they gave me an interview with Mark Zuckerberg for the foreword, which was huge, because I think at the time he had only interviewed with like Oprah lesley stahl or Diane Sawyer or someone it was a real cool and really exciting. And so you were right when you said I’ve written seven books, it’s just that only six of them have been not because Facebook fairytales does actually narrative nonfiction.


Scott D Clary  09:40

So I understand the people that I saw


Emily Liebert  09:44

on authorial all and a couple of sample chapters. And we said, okay, let’s put this first novel aside. Let’s get Facebook fairytales out because it needs to come out right now, which we did. And by the time Facebook fairytales came out I already had an idea for another novel. And I be novel that is never seen the light of day was loosely based on my life and my experience. And I no longer felt that it needed to be the light of day it was cathartic writing it. And that was enough for me. So I wrote then I wrote you knew me when. And I got a two book deal with Penguin Random House for what ended up being you knew me when and when we fall my first two novels. So my second and third books, but my first and second novels. And then I stayed with Penguin Random House for my next two novels, called The Secret sweet key, and some women. And after that, I decided that I wanted to mix things up a little bit and start adding some psychological suspense, make my books a little edgier. And I decided I needed a whole fresh start and a whole fresh team for that. So I moved over from Penguin Random House to Simon and Schuster. And I wrote my first what I would say is psychological suspense. But I think that pretty revenge. And purposely famous, both of my psychological suspense books were Simon and Schuster really straddle the line between that and women’s fiction still. So while it’s a little bit edgier, and a little bit of a departure, it’s not a complete departure from what, from the women’s fiction novels that I was writing. And so I am now with Simon and Schuster, perfectly famous, just came out on June 2. And this is pretty revenge, which came out last year. You can see the covers are similar. It’s kind of a branding.


Scott D Clary  11:54

Yeah, I see. I’ll put the links in the show notes, too. So if people are listening, then they can, they can go check it out.


Emily Liebert  12:00

And now I’m writing my eighth book with Simon and Schuster, as well. Oh, and I should also say that during that time, I had a very fun experience of ghostwriting, a book for Teresa, Judy che, who is one of the Real Housewives of New Jersey.


Scott D Clary  12:18

So So you like you just went headfirst into this and you had you had, like, you know, you had some success. And like you said, I guess it was almost like the when you when you put it out at publishers, you got three offers that kind of like defined the career path. But actually agent or agency


Emily Liebert  12:36

agents before you get a publisher, or get an agent. And once you have an agent, they sell your book to publishing.


Scott D Clary  12:44

That’s, that’s a huge that’s a huge, like, sort of like leap into the deep end of writing. And now Now look at you. So that’s that like, is that like a nerve wracking thing when someone wants to? This is the seem to be, I don’t wanna say passion project cuz it seems like diminish the value of what you’ve done. But was it was it very scary, just nerve racking to go in and start just writing this whole book that’s time and energy and effort? And totally pivoting from a career path? Like a traditional career path? Excuse me?


Emily Liebert  13:13

Yeah, I mean, it’s definitely taking a chance. As I said, and you don’t have to write a whole novel, before you get an agent, you are taking a chance, especially these days, it is too hard to sell books, you are taking a chance that you will write an entire book and nothing will happen with it. You could always self publish it. I mean, there’s that but but yeah, it’s definitely a area. And just to be clear, I didn’t just stop freelance writing and, you know, give up all the money and right above I kept freelance writing while I was writing the book and killing it, you know, make money.


Scott D Clary  13:54

And I want to ask,this is this these are just the questions that I thought of when I think about writing and why people have trouble writing, I think I think being able to write is like quite honestly one of the most important skills like truly writing impactful things. And I just don’t mean in a novel but I mean, as like building your own brand blogging, writing copy for websites, writing newsletters to you know, go sell your product, I think I think writing is so important but what what allows you to be able to write what stops you from having I guess quote unquote, writer’s


Emily Liebert  14:23

block. So I do get asked a lot about renders block. I don’t I don’t want to say don’t get writer’s block. There are certainly days that it’s easier to write and others that it’s not, but I don’t get writer’s block in the sense where weeks or months go by and I just can’t put anything down on the page. I have deadlines. It’s like someone else being sick saying I have jobs. You know, like I can’t do my job. So yesterday’s you’re better at your job than others. Yes, there are days that the words blow on to the page and there are days that it’s a struggle But typically when I push myself to get those first words down and those first sentences down, it does start rolling from there. And additionally, I have an outline. So it’s not just like this big surprise, what I’m going to write every day I do you know what’s coming next. And that does help inspire you to write that.


Scott D Clary  15:25

And then what? What is that inspiration that you like? What drives what you write about? Where do you get that inspiration? But worse or better question, actually, where do you get an idea for a book.


Emily Liebert  15:37

So I get ideas from my own life, for my friend lies from the things that I observe. My books are not historical fiction, they’re not science fiction. They’re not, you know, aliens coming from another planet. So they are based on real life. What women go through friendship, relationship. You know, in the case of perfectly famous, it’s about a mother’s loss of a child, it’s about two women who have bigger voids in their lives, that they’re looking to try to fail. And I think that women and men go through different stages in life, where you want different things where you lose things. As you get older, you lose people, you lose relationships, you gain people, you gain relationship, jobs, change, houses change. And I write about all of those life changes.


Scott D Clary  16:38

If you want, like, you know, I even if you want to just put it since we’re already sort of speaking about it, if you want to do a brief summary of what perfectly famous is about So if people are listening to get a little more context, I don’t mind that also go for it. And then we can go back into some of the questions.


Emily Liebert  16:51

So perfectly famous is about two strong women. One is named Ward de Fleur, and she is a very, very famous crime novelist. She’s just written her 13th book, lucky number 13. And she is at her first book signing at the very beginning of the book, when you find out as her teenage daughter Stevie has been abducted and killed. And she freaks out obviously, leaves her town in Connecticut, where she lives. And nobody can find her. She reunited on all of her book deals. And she goes into kind of a secluded depression under a second woman named Bree Bennett, who is also enduring a different kind of void in her life, a lesser way to obviously, which is that she’s recently divorced. And she also has a teenage daughter who no longer needs her. And she’s struggling to figure out what her purpose in the world and she’s a former journalist, she’s been a housewife for many years, and she decides it’s time to go back to work. And in doing that, she decided she’s going to find her favorite author or discipler helwa award story to the world. And in doing so, she gets entangled with words daughter, Stevie’s killer.


Scott D Clary  18:09

I like that. I like the plot. That’s very good. That’s very good. What did that said that just came out now. Right? Everything


Emily Liebert  18:15

came out in June 2. Yeah, very good.


Scott D Clary  18:17

Okay. And I just a couple more questions about the whole the whole writing process. Sure. How do you how do you because you have you have six novels out and have all six hit the bestseller list?


Emily Liebert  18:32

Do you can s Seller List?


Scott D Clary  18:34

What what is the formula for a best seller? What do you need to know?


Emily Liebert  18:41

I could tell you that I would have to kill you. I have Yeah. Yeah. I don’t know how it happens. I know it happens through sales. But you have to be you can’t just be someone who writes the book, you have to know how to promote yourself, do PR and marketing. My Publishing House does that for me. But I also do it for myself and I hire a publicist outside of my publishing house, you know, and lean harder is amazing. And I work really hard to make sure that everyone knows about my book, I will post on social media, I do giveaways. I send out email I actually partner with a brand for each of my books, which I don’t know any authors, aside from myself that do this. So I’ve partnered with nail polish brands, lipstick brands, I’ve partnered with general makeup brands. I’ve partnered with Canyon Ranch with perfectly famous, I partnered with waffle, which is a intimate brand bras and underwears and we launched a campaign called the perfect fit, which is your perfect fit book and your perfect fit bra. And Andy


Scott D Clary  19:57

That’s smart. That’s very smart. Very smart. Your Instagram, it’s really like it’s really well done.


Emily Liebert  20:02

Like, yes for the brand about, you know, being fitted for a bra and what kind of bra you wear when you’re working out when you’re getting dressed up. We did one very interesting vignette where I was posing in my waffle Braun underwear on my porch at sunrise with no makeup on. My very talented friend Jen Goldberg is a photographer. She has a private portrait part of her company, which is sort of boudoir photography. And during the pandemic, she was doing front porch photos at sunrise, and we decided it would be great to bring this into the waffle partnership. And so I posed for her series in my waffle Braun underwear. After that, I noticed that a lot of people that were posing for her were in robes, and night gowns and pajamas. I was told you were supposed to be in your bra under just how you woke up. And I was one of them.


Scott D Clary  21:11

It was your honest, true self. That’s all that matters, right?


Emily Liebert  21:16

For sure. And this is my honest truth up to this is your own makeup. This is exactly how I woke up this morning with messy hair and no makeup. So just me Take it or leave it.


Scott D Clary  21:29

It No, it’s good. That’s that’s how you got to be. And I think that, you know, I’ve seen every time I speak about just marketing, obviously not just marketing books, but just marketing in general. It’s always about being like authentic, because that’s what people get they buy into it. It’s just real. Real. You know,


Emily Liebert  21:43

this girl right here who’s awesome me. But that’s me with hair and makeup.


Scott D Clary  21:51

And how did you I guess I guess my question is, this is a funny, okay, so the reason why I’m asking is because I see a lot of people that, that sell books or self products and they and they don’t quite get everything you just mentioned about how to market how to be personal How to Be authentic partnerships and all this stuff. And, and you do see it obviously at the upper echelons. But it takes a lot to get there. But you’re just sort of taking this on your own. Where did you learn to do this? Where do you learn to market? And how did you sort of understand that this is how you bring a book or a product to and you’re doing it like you’re doing Instagram lives, like you’re doing everything you’re feeling?


Emily Liebert  22:27

I think you I think it’s all a progression. It doesn’t all come at once. But when I wrote this book, fairy tales, I had a lot of luck getting publicity, because it was about Facebook, Facebook was exploding in the media was sort of this Chicken Soup for the Soul, kind of bookings amazing stories and people eat that stuff up. They love to hear about that. And so I as you read before I was on the Today Show, I was on Rachael Ray Anderson Cooper, and I got so much attention for that book. And when I wrote a novel, I was told immediately, do not expect this kind of publicity for a novel. And I thought to myself, Well, that makes sense. You know, there aren’t these sort of aspects to it, like the Facebook aspects of Mark Zuckerberg aspected, you know, amazing stories aspect of, it’s a book that came from my mind. And there are a lot of authors with a lot of novels, so I knew I had to do something to set myself apart. And somewhere in this brain of mine, I came up with the idea of approaching a nail polish company, and seeing if they would make a nail polish that named after the book and after my characters that we could send to everybody in the press, and do giveaways with and I could bring them to my event. And it just really work amazingly. And I got I worked with a company called Zoya, which makes amazing nail polish. And it got the book so much publicity outside of book websites or books, you know, magazines, that read article in the gym like InStyle magazine and on refinery 29. And in Pop Sugar, and all these places where something just a book might not get attention, but all of a sudden, there’s this nail polish set, and the polishes are named for my characters and cute sort of tie in. So that worked really well. I also knew to hire a publicist outside of my publishing house, because while the publicist at the publishing house are amazing, they have 1015 God knows how many books they’re working on at the same time. So I stuck with the partnerships after that the brand partnership and I just knew I had to be really good on social media. I knew that, that creating, like good This interesting content was really important because you have to think about what you like to see and other people’s content. And I think people want to see the real you and they want to see you talking, and what are you wearing? And what are you eating? And what is your life’s like up side of writing books, you know, what do you do with your kids and also like that you’re not perfect, and you’re not that girl on the book with your hair blown out and your perfect makeup. And I don’t know, they probably took away half my wrinkles to them, like, you know, it’s sort of a shock thing that they do with those pictures. And specifically, when I realized which I fortunately realized very early on during the pandemic, that I was not going to be able to do a physical book tour, which I did already have set up. I pivoted, and this was, I mean, I knew I knew in April, I think so many people were holding out saying June’s gonna be fine. It’s still two months away, you’re gonna be fine. And my husband and I are sitting here saying, There’s no way I’m going on book tour in June. And I pivoted and I set up probably, probably close to like, 30 events for myself different anything from zoom events to Instagram Live. And I also really tried to mix it up. Like I tried to do some lives with books to grammars. I did some with celebrities, I kicked it off with Melissa Joan Hart, which was great. And we did it pre publication. I did one with Lynn dsrnas, who’s a sportscaster. And I did with people who do UDN books, there were just a lot of interesting I did one with one of the Real Housewives Margaret Joseph, there were a lot of interesting personalities, interesting people. I’ve done a bunch of podcasts, interviews, your magazines, newspapers, you you have to saturate, you have to make sure people are just seeing the book over and over. Because as I’m sure you know, in marketing, people don’t always buy the book the first time they see it, but the 10th time they see it. They’re wondering why I haven’t seen this book 10 times.


Scott D Clary  27:26

Yeah, it takes quite a bit. It takes quite a bit of exposure before somebody actually makes it obviously depends on what the dollar value of the item is. But for even for something that’s only like, how much is the book like 20 bucks 30 bucks most?


Emily Liebert  27:40

I think the minor team


Scott D Clary  27:43

know 15 interest in it’s gonna be you know, you’re so


Emily Liebert  27:46

oversaturated 99 Yeah,


Scott D Clary  27:49

you’ll have to see that book a few times before you’re like, oh, wait, who is this? Who is this woman I see her everywhere. I see this book everywhere. And then


Emily Liebert  27:57

give away to get to get more people to follow me and more people to follow you and more people you can reach during various my posts sometimes so that I can reach wider groups of people and cast the net wider.


Scott D Clary  28:15

Know that it’s very smart. I just I noticed that I didn’t realize that you were doing a lot of this stuff yourself. So just you know, it’s even more impressive, because it’s really well done. Like I it’s really, really well done. And I think that you’re you’re nailing and like I think that’s a differentiator that a lot of people that do their own thing. Could be writing a book, it could be any side hustle. Like the ability to access people through social and being personal and being human and being your authentic self and marketing that can can drive massive traffic, even if you aren’t, you don’t have like a million dollar ad budget. Right? And I think that’s what you’re sort of showcasing here. It’s your


Emily Liebert  28:49

$9 ad. Are you doing a good job with any bigger this space with no makeup? Ah,


Scott D Clary  28:57

um, I have I have just I have one more question just about, about the book and publishing and writing. And then I just have some rapid fire just about insights that you’ve learned from your life. Um, just one one sort of Roundup question, what’s, what’s something? Or is there something that I should have asked you about writing or publishing that I don’t know enough about the topic to ask you that you would say people should sort of take note of,


Emily Liebert  29:24

um, I think one thing that people who are looking to write a book need to know about is rejection. I hate to say it, but there’s a lot of rejection in this industry. I think the becoming an author is almost like saying I’m going to become an actress, or I’m going to become, I don’t know a chef or something where there are a lot of talented people competing and doing the same thing. And I think that you have to develop a tough skin. And that’s my dog making noises in the background.


Scott D Clary  29:59

This is a new reality. This is a no right? Oh, it’s not a big,


Emily Liebert  30:02

I think you have to develop a thick skin and you have to know how to be knocked down and brush yourself off and pick yourself back up. Another thing is sometimes books get turned into TV shows or movies. And pretty revenge came out last July with option for a television series. And some fabulous writers were hired. So that is in the works now. And since that’s a major grain of salt, you know, until it is on the air, I don’t believe. But it’s always fun to have someone we think that your book could be.


Scott D Clary  30:45

Yeah, well, yeah. So that just shows you like, you know, just just do and then as you’re saying, like with your marketing, you’re pivoting and you’re sort of learning but you’re also opening yourself up to other opportunities that weren’t initially presented. So those are two great lessons even and especially the rejection one, I think that’s very important. Not from, you know, like not to not try, but just be realistic, but expectations too. Okay, so I think that there was that is, I think that’s pretty good. We covered a lot of like your book is that we’re good there. Okay, so let’s, let’s go into some life lesson like insight questions. So what would be one lesson that you would tell your younger self?


Emily Liebert  31:28

I would tell my younger self, not to apologize as much. I think that women in business, especially when they’re writing emails for some reason, and following up and pushing and nudging to get something, they often and I know I’m have been very guilty of this in the past, and I don’t do it anymore. Say, I’m really sorry to nudge you, or I’m really sorry to push for follow up again, for or you’ll hear people say I’m sorry, but I hope it’s okay. If I asked you about this, what are you apologizing for? I don’t hear men apologize very often in emails, or when they’re speaking to someone, they just ask for what they want. And I think that I would tell my younger self, just ask for what I want. And it’s always okay to ask that people say no, they say no.


Scott D Clary  32:24

That’s a very, it’s something I’ve never thought of before. But that’s a very smart lesson. Very smart lesson. Um, what’s, what’s one thing about yourself, that people misunderstand about a successful writer?


Emily Liebert  32:42

No, very tight day. And I really push for what I want. And I try not to take no for an answer. Unless it’s a hard No, in which case, I take it. Because you have to take a hard note, you have to know when to stop. But I think sometimes that can come off as that I’m just as tough, you know, hard as nails person all the time. And why am that way a lot in business, because business is business. That’s not actually my person. In real life. I’m a mother, I have two little blades. And actually, I hope, a reasonably nice person,


Scott D Clary  33:24

I think, but I also think you I also think you’re not wrong and being tough. I think that I think you have to have that persona, when you go into negotiations. Not Not, not mean, not aggressive, but just like yours, and know what you stand for. But no, you seem you seem a very nice person. So I’m very good. What would be this is a big question. But I like to ask it because it’s it’s so topical. Now with all the social justice issues that are going on, what would be one thing that we can all do to make the world a slightly better place?


Emily Liebert  33:59

I think people can put their time and their money where their mouth is. So I’m actually glad that you asked this question because this block perfectly famous, came out on blackout today. Oh, which is I’m not gonna lie a rough day to launch your book, because you can’t promote it, as I learned, and it’s not appropriate to promote it. So not only did I not promote it that day that I did not do any events. That week. If someone puts something off, I shared it. But I didn’t initiate my own promotion for that entire week. And I pushed all my events off that week and some even the following week. And I thought to myself, I can go on social media and post a bunch of memes about this, like a lot of people are doing who by the way did not care about any of this one week ago until it became trendy. Or I can put my money where my mouth is. So I decided to donate a portion The sale to a human rights charity that was working for Black Lives Matter. And what I wanted to do is do that. But I didn’t want to jump to figure out what organization it was going to be within 24 hours, because that also seems inauthentic to me. So I took a week to do my research, learn, listen to other people. And then I called my friend Kerry Kennedy, which was actually my first instinct anyway. And she is the president of the Robert F. Kennedy, human rights organization. And I asked her, are you guys doing specific work for black lives matter? Are you bolstering black blood communities, organizations, businesses, and she said, 150% we are. And you know, I will make sure any money that you donate gets put to good use. So when you buy perfectly famous, a portion of the proceeds are going to RFK human rights, and being put to use for black lives matter. So I say, put your money and your time where your mouth is, don’t just start throwing up memes on Instagram and think that that’s enough.


Scott D Clary  36:12

Very good. Very, very happy with that answer. Just because that’s my, that’s my biggest pet peeve with with social activism. And it’s, and it’s not okay to just like a post or throw up a black square. It’s an action in one month, three months, six months, 12 months, that actually changes. Right? So good. Very good. That’s impressive. And that’s that’s not easy to you took a hit on the book tour, you took a hit. Now you’re taking a hit on the on the revenue. You’re not a bad I don’t know, who thinks you’re an evil person


Emily Liebert  36:43

who thinks some evil just I do you know, I do one thing the way I want and I can be definitely, that’s fine. That’s not I’m sure my husband would say can be


Scott D Clary  36:58

very good. If you could have, if you can have a conversation or dinner with two people alive or dead, who would they be?


Emily Liebert  37:08

I would definitely be my maternal grandfather who is no longer with us. So I would love to be at dinner with him again. And I would say probably if that was going to be the dinner, I would want my grandmother there to she is alive. But I would love to have dinner with the two of them again,


Scott D Clary  37:36

I love that answer. That’s a really nice answer.


Emily Liebert  37:38

I mean, I could have said like Madonna, I know. That would also be really cool, by the way, like Madonna, Gwyneth Paltrow, that kind of thing. But


Scott D Clary  37:49

that just shows you it shows you what’s important to you. You know? And then was I just had one more question, just trying to think of going through my list here. What was the what was the best day in your life? And what was the worst day in your life? And why?


Emily Liebert  38:09

Oh, my goodness. The I guess I would have to say the best day in my life was the day that I met my husband, because together we have two children. So I guess that was the Domino and the beginning of the domino effect of what were other amazingly happy days in my life where my children are born. My two sons. And what was the worst day did you then?


Scott D Clary  38:39

Yeah, the worst day that day? The worst would be would have


Emily Liebert  38:43

to be when my grandfather died. Yeah, he’s the only really cute I was very, very close with him. And he’s the only thank God, the only person who’s very, very close to me, in my life who has passed away.


Scott D Clary  38:59

Very good. I just, you’re very, you’re very, you’re very, very family oriented. I just, I thought that may be the answer. But I wasn’t sure because sometimes people have incredibly hard like career days, or it depends. Um, you know, I’m not changing your answer by


Emily Liebert  39:15

that I do. And I want I you know, people should know that. It’s not like every day is a great day like, writing. I mean, listen, I’m not gonna lie. Yeah, perfectly famous launch day. But in the grand scheme of what was going on in the world, it was hard to feel sorry for myself. You know, my book is gonna sell it’s gonna be okay. Life goes on. I’m the only person the only person that I’m you know, I’m the only person that that one day is very important to. And I’ve definitely had setbacks in my career, no doubt. But at the end of the day, a career is a career and a job is a job. And to me, at least, what’s most important is I have a healthy family, healthy, safe family.


Scott D Clary  40:04

And most important question is Where do people go to find out more about you? Social website


Emily Liebert  40:10

now, Emily liebert.com. And you can find all of my social media and all of my book links on there. But then also follow me on Instagram and Twitter at Emily Lieber and on Facebook at author Emily Lieber.


Scott D Clary  40:25

And if you’re if you’re, if you’re listening, I’m just gonna it’s, it’s Emily. So E M, I, L y, and then L I E, B E R T, because I made the mistake of trying to find your website with EI. So I just wanted to clear that up. People are trying to find it.


Emily Liebert  40:39

Yes, I before E except after C. And yeah, nope. And people should reach out to me for bookclub. Just if you want to write me a note, I reply to every single person if you reach out to me, and I don’t reply to you, that means I didn’t get it for some reason, because my biggest pet peeve which you didn’t ask me about. My biggest pet peeve is when people do not reply to people’s emails. Now listen, if you’re Kim Kardashian, I get that you can’t reply to 5 million emails. But seeing as I’m not in Kardashian level, yet, right now, I reply to all mine.


Scott D Clary  41:17

That’s all for today. Thanks again for joining me on another episode of the success story podcast. You can download or stream this podcast wherever podcasts are available, including iTunes, Spotify, Google, Stitcher, I heart, radio, and many others. You can also watch his podcasts on YouTube. If you haven’t already. Please subscribe and share this podcast with your friends, family, coworkers and peers. Please leave us a rating on iTunes takes about 30 seconds as it allows other people to find our podcast and lets our amazing guests reach even more people with their message. And remember any rating is fine as long as it contains five stars. I’m Scott Clary from the success story podcast signing off

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