Saturday, October 24, 2009

Tips on Author Websites

Robin with friend and Trixie, 1952 by Peter Samuelson (20thc.) As I make blog rounds and visit Tweeted links, sometimes I can see a pattern of interest in a subject over the course of the week. This week I kept running into tips on tweaking our author websites. Or…maybe I was subconsciously interested in the topic and those were the links I kept clicking on.

Website designing software has gotten so easy to use that most of us are able to come up with a simple design, then maintain and update our own sites.

I’ll admit that I’m not a decorating type of girl. As you can see from my blog. :) Not a whole lot going on, aesthetically, on the blog. In fact, the Blogger template was called “Minimalistic.” My eyes have a hard time reading anything but black on white, so I went with what was easiest for me, since I’m spending the most time on the blog.

The website is a little different. I do think websites should pop a little bit.

These are the sites I came across this week. I think I need to spruce up my website a little, so I’m going to use some of the tips I came across. And, unfortunately, H1N1 has hit my house (courtesy of my son) and so I may be spending some quiet time around the house the next few days. Or longer. Or maybe we’ll all end up with it and I’ll talk to y’all again in a month. :)

The Book Publicity Blog, which is new to me, seems to be a good resource for many different things. I’m linking to their post on author websites. Most interesting point this article made: including your contact info for your agent. I never would have thought of doing that. So Ellen—I’m putting your info on there now!

Literary agent Nathan Bransford’s post on author websites. Most interesting point: Be very, very careful about posting excerpts from a book you’re hoping to have published.

And this site just seems hilarious to me: The Intern. Basically, it’s written by a young woman who’s been working (for free) for a publishing company. She’s seems really witty and sharp---fun to read. I’ve linked to her post on websites. Most interesting point (and I’m quoting directly):

INTERN gets confused if the author website the author provides doubles as the author's personal ferret photo collection/manga link farm/news feeds from other random websites, and one has to sift through all this other stuff to find writing-related information. Save your author website for content directly related to your writerly self (and/or your professional self, if applicable). Please?

I’m going to look at these tips and brush up my site, which I usually neglect doing in favor to spending time with my blog.

On a separate note: There’s a fairly good chance I’ll come down with swine flu. Not only was there flu present at the Hannah Montana sleepover that I chaperoned last night (a girl fessed up that she hadn’t been to school that day because she had flu--and had missed school all the past week suffering from it. MOM—What are you thinking?!?!?! This mom may end up as a victim in my next murder mystery…) but it’s in my own house now, too. Is there anyone who’d like to write a guest post for this blog? Y’all know the kind of thing I stick on here. Or you could write something different.

If you’re interested, please just email me a story, links, photos. I’ll throw them up on the blog. I usually like to post very early in the morning…except, well, for today. Because of Hannah Montana and the fact that my air mattress had a hole in it and my bony back was on a gym floor. :) So you could email it to me the night before and I'd schedule it for the next morning.

I’ll take the first 7 people, for right now. I think I’m going to be on Lysol and Clorox wipe duty for a bit, even if I stay healthy, so it might be nice to grab a quiet week. Thanks, y’all.