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Author websites

Hi gang! As per our event this week on building an author website, I thought we could start a thread here to post your author websites where we can kindly and constructively critique each other's. Like beta readers for websites. Pop your URL below! 

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Replies (53)
    • Mine is in dire need of an update and absolutely not a show of a good site at all, but it's here if anyone would like to rip it to shreds: https://sophieflynn.com/ 

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      • Thank you! It was a quick job on Wordpress using one of their themes (I wanted to get it professionally done but was too tight to pay the £600 or so needed... )

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        • Hi Sophie,

          I just looked at your website and I wondered if there was any reason it was so dark. It looks like my iPad when it is running out of battery and is decreasing light to the screen.

          The other thing, in About Sophie I thought you could put a bit more … readers want to know about you… your thoughts, your poems, who you are. I didn’t get any feeling of the person.


          I hope you don’t think that is rude, those were just my thought as I looked at your site. Mine is totally different but also needs work, I have bits of poetry, blogs, random pictures. These things are not easy.

          Good luck with it, Georgina 

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          • I like it. The colour scheme is very eye catching and having your book upfront must be great for sales. Brilliant quotes, too. Fab

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          • I don't know anything about website design but your website looks good to me, Sophie - just in need of some updating. E.g. is the All My Lies paperback out? And in general more bright colours maybe? The site is quite strongly black and white which seems fine for the text but your All My Lies page is shaded, and things like the Follow button could have a colour background rather than a black one? Just a bit more oomph and gentle modernisation I think.

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            • Hi Libby, thank you for looking! It definitely needs updating - but sadly no, no paperback yet! I've got two new books out this year, both in paperback, so am waiting for the cover on one of those before I update. Yes, the shading I'm not keen on either. 

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            • Not sure what mine needs tbh - im not arty. But more than happy for critiques so I can find out!! Thank you. 

              https://www.caronmckinlay.com/


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              • Agree with the above but I LOVE the Desert Island feature. 

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                • You need to do one! 

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                  • I love your updated site - especially with the new The Storytellers spread! Looks glorious x

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                  • Mine shows a hell of a lot of unpublished stories and unproduced screenplays (as well as links to several short films I wrote and produced). I'm proud at the quantity, but embarrassed at the lack of validation. 

                    Question: does it seem that there's too much that never quite made it? Is that offputting?

                    https://www.storiesintolight.co.uk/ 

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                    • It’s very easy to follow and I like that you lay out your schedule clearly for us to see.

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                      • Nothing shouted 'un-produced' at me, quite the opposite! Those accolades, v impressive!

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                        • You've got such an impressive list of credits there! It just reads like a professional calling card to me. Nice, clean design, straightforward to navigate. I liked it 

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                        • My website is intended to scare the crap out of you. 😁  https://www.pyratepubs.com/

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                          • Must say, I love your book covers, Georgina! They're really eye-catching and make a lovely splash of colour for your home page. 

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                            • Thank you, Lynn, that’s really kind. The second one is out in May and I hope readers think so too. 🤪

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                              • They're just lovely. And I love the mix of things on your site - the poetry, the short stories, the biographical elements about your flying. You give a real sense of yourself there

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                              • My website is here : https://jonathanmarkauthor.com Grateful for any comments.



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                                • Hi Mark. I really like your home page - those covers are very striking and the page as a whole is clean and easy to read. If I have a tiny niggle it's that you could cut 'This website is to promote my books...' line, because that's implicit. The fact you've included lots of background info about the setting of your books is terrific - really feels like I'm getting something for free and gives a solid grounding to read on. Great

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                                  • Thank you Lynn for your kind comments and your point about my website being used to promote my books is well taken and noted. I am guilty of neglecting the website while concentrating on a novel of a completely different genre. Covid has prevented me completing my trilogy which was going to be an excuse to visit Southern India on a research trip. I really must do some more to the website to encourage more readers. 

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                                    • Thank you. Always needs more work but that deflects from the business of writing.

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                                    • Hi all. Late to this party, but just published my new website, so any feedback is very welcome. And if anyone still wants feedback on their own site, do let me know. Thanks all.

                                      https://www.lynnlove.co.uk/

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                                      • That's brilliant feedback, Glyn, thank you. Yes, you make a good point about the colour scheme and other genres - perhaps I should emphasise my other writing (mainly having been published many time in Women's Magazines - not creepy at all!) And I'll take a look at the appearance of the Dark is Rising. Brilliant help, thank you 

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                                        • I'm even later to the party, but I wanted to chime in. Your website is gorgeous. Immediately I get the vibes of spooky, speculative fiction, so I assume that is your genre. And I relate, as a writer and as a reader. The only thing that was a bit confusing was the navigation, the sections are navigated by scrolling, but then you also have separate pages in the menu, like Services. Otherwise, great website. I'll take notes.

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                                          • Hi Lynn. Just found this thread, so late. 

                                            I like the broody, dark feel of your landing page. Some suggestions which may be helpful:

                                            You seem to have 3 different images as background to the scroll - the single tree, then the canopy and then the trunks. Looks a little disjointed. Possibly find a single image for the background?

                                            If the idea is to sell the books, I'd make the buttons brighter. Hard to see at present.

                                            Marie's comment about navigation is good. The bio at the bottom of the first page feels unnecessary.  Clicking on About, where I expected to find your story, took me to another page which was friendly and chatty and told me your story well.

                                            The couple of titles at the end of the blurb seem unnecessary too. I actually tried clicking on them to see if they led me to another learn more section of the site. Possibly give them a heading if you feel they should remain?

                                            The search box is confusing too. I typed in Author just to see if it took me back to the About (you) page, but instead it took me your blogs. Possibly rename as Search Blogs if that's what it is? Or rely on the main menu alone?

                                            Hope this doesn't seem too negative. It is a beautiful looking site.



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                                          • Only just found this thread. Some excellent sites here.

                                            It's a scary business, putting yourself out there where everyone can see. And that's before you reveal your limited tech-savviness, or the fact that you haven't actually written (let alone published) a book yet.

                                            PaulCMercer.com


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                                            • Hi Paul, I just now found the thread, so I hope you see my feedback. Immediately, I am drawn to read your words. Your website is very inviting and friendly. I love the imagery of the tree and the overall design. Very well done! The fact that you haven't yet finished writing your book matters not, you do a great job of enticing readers to wait.

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                                              • Hi Paul

                                                I'm late to this thread too, but I think your website is great. 

                                                Although I've got book 1 and the reader magnet written (just waiting to have the cover tidied up by designer), I'm going to complete book 2 before hitting Amazon, so nothing to sell just yet. I've been wondering how to entice readers to the freebie and, hopefully, the first novel, and I love the way you're encouraging interest.

                                                And I'm going to pinch the term Club from you. So much better than boring Subscriber.

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                                                • Thanks, Carol. It is something of a challenge to entice people in when you don't really have anything to sell yet. But I'm going for it, with fingers crossed.

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                                                • Hey there, 

                                                  Wanted to let people know about CC Gimartin's website:

                                                  You can download a FREE copy of the reader magnet before the launch of the brand new Colin Buxton crime series. Would be delighted if you can take a look. 

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