So you’ve heard whispers that an author website is an essential piece of any author’s platform, but you’re new to the literary scene and are feeling hesitant about getting one.
What exactly will you put on your author website if you haven’t yet garnered any publication credits? Would anyone (like literary agents, editors, family, or friends) be interested in going to your writer website? Is it worth your time and money?
We’ll show you how (and why) even new, unpublished writers benefit from—and even need—an author website.
Let the Q & A begin!
Q: What if I don’t have any publication credits to post on my writer website?
A: That’s okay! Every writer has to start somewhere. Use your “About Me” page to show that you’re dedicated, poised, interesting, professional, and enthusiastic. Offer visitors a well-written bio that will exemplify you as a person and as an author. Talk about:
- What you hope your writing offers readers
- What you’re working on right now that’s new and exciting
- What inspires you
- Your interests and hobbies outside of writing
You’ll be in a good position to impress the people who CAN take your author bio to the next level. Don’t be shy, talk about yourself!
Plus, you can always read this article for additional tips: How To Build Up Your Writing Bio Super Fast.
Q: What if I don’t have a book?
A: An author website isn’t solely for promoting your novel or your collection of poetry, stories, or essays. It’s also for promoting and educating people about your writing as a whole.
Post samples of your work and the “backstory” that inspired them (just be sure that the works have already been published before posting them online).
If you have a book in the works, it can easily be added to your site at any time. And won’t it be nice to have the site already made when that time comes?
Consider a “Coming Soon” page with a teaser about your works-in-progress, or an email sign-up form so visitors can be notified when your work becomes available.
Q: How will I go about marketing my author website? Will people visit it?
A: Social media is an excellent way to spread the news about your new author website. Just as having an author website is important in promoting yourself as a writer, social media has quickly arrived at the forefront of self-promotion as well. You can have a Facebook page or a Twitter account dedicated solely to you as a writer or even strictly for your book.
Q: Since I have no publication credits, what will I include on my website?
A: You can take your author website in a multitude of directions. Think of it as a garden that will grow organically with you. You can plant some seeds to start and change it up as you go.
A blog is another tool often utilized by writers on their website. With a blog, you can post your free writing and give the world an idea of your writing style. It’s the perfect place to showcase your writing before being published! A bio or “About me” page is always a good beginning, and, as mentioned above, it’s a great place to introduce yourself as a person and as a writer.
Q: What do I have to gain from getting an author website?
A: Author websites have become the new business card for writers. Even if you’ve yet to be published, you can begin building momentum for your writing career.
Think of it as a massive networking opportunity in which the number of people you can meet is virtually infinite. Then, when the time comes for you to query literary agents or submit your writing to literary journals, you’ll have a substantial author platform built for agents and editors to look at and admire.
It’s important to keep in mind that having an author website is so much more than just posting an excerpt here and there. It’s about promoting yourself as a writer and creating a space where people can come and learn about you. So much of being an author is marketing your brand, and an author website is a crucial step in that process.
Question: Have you ever Googled an author website? Whose?
Dear Writer’s Relief:
About a month ago, I created my own website through Webs.com. My website is called “It’s Not All Gumdrops And Unicorns.” The title is meant to be sarcastically humorous. When I have the chance, I intend to have my college chapbook revised, expanded, rebound, and self-published with both old and new material. I’m still learning and experimenting with my website. Although, I think I’ve done quite well so far. I was wondering if you could take a look at my website and possibly give me some more input. I have yet to upload a profile picture because I’ve been experiencing some glitches. Anyway, if you could please look at my website and provide some input, I would really appreciate it.
Thank you and I look forward to your response!
Please send us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’d be happy to take a look at your site and discuss it via e-mail.
Okay, I will do that. Thank you so much!
Do you design websites for authors of children’s books?
Yes we do! Please schedule a consultation using this form for more information on how we can help you.
Why shouldn’t you post unpublished excerpts on your website?
Some editors of literary journals may consider excerpts on your website previously published, and thus wouldn’t be able to consider them for publication. It’s not NOT allowed, but if you want to publish your work in the future, you may not be able to send something already posted for public viewing.
Thanks so much for all this “great information you share on your webpage”. Amazing!
I’m pretty new and looking forward to get a trilogy of poems published, in Spanish, “Amar a los 60”. (Love at 60).
Is it right to send some of the poems included in my trilogy to magazines, etc., after they get published?
Most journals don’t accept previously published poems. You can find more information here: https://writersrelief.com/2020/12/29/what-does-previously-published-really-mean-writers-relief/