Once I decided that I really need a high-quality author’s website, the work began. My Weebly site was okay, but I’d never put as much thought into it as I should, and I always felt uncomfortable with Weebly. I didn’t really want to spend money on a site, but I wanted maximum design flexibility, among other things, and free sites just don’t offer that. I’ll probably go with Squarespace, but I won’t use the free introductory period until I have the content well worked out, and a solid idea for the design.
In the meantime, I’ve been looking at other author’s sites to get ideas, and haven’t been impressed by many of them. Trying to see them as a reader would, I wound up wondering why readers would bother to come back after one visit. So I’ve been picking up ideas, always keeping in mind that I want the site to be well-organized and easy to navigate, offer reasons for readers to keep visiting, and, above all, that it be representative of the kind of writing I do, both fiction and nonfiction. That’s a pretty tall order, but it’s beginning to take shape.
Of course I’ve also been reading articles on website design, particularly on what an author needs for a successful site, and some of those have been very helpful. One of the best is Amber Ludwig’s Make Your Website Do the Work: The 6 Site MUST-Haves to Sell More Books, Improve Your Credibility and Grow Your Following. It’s a quick read. If you are considering building a website to promote your writing, I’d consider it a must.