Wednesday, March 25, 2009
On the WWW
Yesterday I spent some time surfing the web, looking at author's web pages. It was an interesting experience. Some authors have up-to-date information on their sites with all sorts of extras such as character biographies and trailers for their books. Several of those with extensive bibliographies have the complete list, broken down into series and some even give publishing dates. Like I said, their pages are really up to date.
And then there are the others. I found websites three and four years out of date. On one website the author more or less said, "I'm too busy to mess with this anymore. So here's what I have up to this point in time." It was dated two years ago.
Personally, I don't care how fancy your website is as long as it has current accurate information. Fancy slide shows? Trailers for every book under the sun? Not necessary. When I visit an author's website, I want three things: an up-to-date list of the author's books with purchasing information, an up-to-date list of upcoming books, and if any of the books are part of a series, then I want the title order listed so I know which book to read first.
Everything else after that is gravy. Maps, free short stories, character bios, author autobiography are all fine. As long as they're up to date!
There are a couple authors that I wonder if they're dead or alive. To my way of thinking, if you're not going to keep your info updated, then why have it??? If there's no way to reach you to let you know half your links are broken, if there's no current information on your career and what or when to expect releases, then why do you have a web page?
New authors worry about whether their web page is fancy enough. I've looked at some beautiful pages...with broken links and fancy do-dads that didn't work. Just give me a straight forward business-like page with the information I need. Never forget that the point of having a web page is to disseminate information.
Anything after that is extra.
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