I am a bad, bad webmistress. I realized that I haven't updated my website in about 6 months (until now, of course, though it's not quite finished). Sometimes I ask myself why I got the darn thing in the first place. Mostly, it was because I wanted to learn how to build a website. I like the one I did, but it's not perfect. In fact, I've already pretty much decided that unless I learn Dreamweaver, I'm getting a web designer when I sell a book. Because let's face it, there's a big difference between a professional site and one you threw together yourself, unless you happen to know a lot about HTML and all that. Which I don't, even though I change this blog a zillion times. 🙂
Do you have a website? Do you think it's necessary for writers these days? Can you jump the gun too much or is it a good idea to learn about maintaining a site before you sell that first book? Pros? Cons? I'm interested!
I think I will pay the money and have someone else do the website… 😉
But, I do believe that if you want to become competitive and sell books you need to have a website. It helps you to get an audience.
I’ve had a website, in one form or another, since 1995. (Remember the awful one I did back then for trollcastle?) I don’t have a writing-related one right now, though I’m in the process of redoing my business one. If I ever get back to writing seriously, I’ll put one up.
I agree with Cynthia that websites are vital for authors hoping to build an audience. For anyone in the arts, I think. I’ve done a couple for middle eastern dancers that the clients say have brought in a good amount of business. For authors, they’re great for gaining exposure and building reader loyality.
(ps: I think Dreamweaver is highly overrated. 🙂 I do everything in Ultraedit, over my son’s objections.)
I think having a website is good, too. I just wonder if perhaps I should have waited first. 🙂 OTOH, I have learned a lot from setting it up and dealing with it. I need to be more regular about updating it, but sometimes I just don’t know what to put up there.
Wow, Terry, I never heard of Ultraedit. I just knew that a lot of people used Dreamweaver. I have an older version of it, but it wasn’t exactly user friendly for a dummy like me so I thought maybe one day I could get a look at the latest version and see if it was simplified for idiots or not. 🙂
How did you get started doing websites? Was it just something you were interested in and you learned it? Or did you take classes? I do remember you’ve always been computer savvy….
Ultraedit is a programmers’ text editor for Old School hacks like me. 🙂 I think in code, so the graphical programs like Dreamweaver don’t do much for me. My son loves it, though.
I’m strictly self-taught. I was doing Fortran programming back in the early 80s, so when the World Wide Web as we now know it came along I had to try it out. As html developed, so did I, adding new skills as I discovered they existed. I’m still doing that. I’m currently working on php with my son for my tutor. It’s his goal in life to stay one step ahead of me. 🙂
Thinking in code. Oh gee. 🙂 I need the pictures. I absolutely cannot think in code for the life of me. Ha!
I can see how you’d be interested enough to be self-taught. I think it’s interesting too, and I’d love to learn it, but I think I’m not natural at it. Heck, I can’t even use Photoshop yet. My husband is the photoshopper around here. I just haven’t bothered to learn it yet, and I know I need to.
I think it’s cool that you and your son do this together!