Thursday, October 1, 2009

Writer's Websites, do you have what it takes?

Compliments of the NY Times, here are the bestsellers in paperback mass-market fiction as of Tuesday September 29, 2009.

Top 5 at a Glance
1. SCARPETTA, by Patricia Cornwell
2. DIVINE JUSTICE, by David Baldacci
3. EXTREME MEASURES, by Vince Flynn
4. 92 PACIFIC BOULEVARD, by Debbie Macomber
5. THE BRASS VERDICT, by Michael Connelly

Why am I listing them? To illustrate the information about what famous writers are doing for a website these days.

Patricia Cornwell’s site has lots of goodies to make it interactive and interesting, including photos, videos, and links.

David Baldacci’s site has lots of tabs and RSS feeds to keep the reader clicking.

Vince Flynn’s site is all about his latest book, what the critics are saying and well, mostly about HIM, his charities, etc.

Debbie Macomber’s site is designed with the reader in mind. Just see how many times the word reader appears!

Michael Connelly’s site is a good mix of things, but to be honest, compared to the rest of them, his site is a bit vanilla.

So what does one need to put on a writer’s website to be successful? I think it is pretty clear. You need to have interactive things like photos and videos, easy navigational items like tabs and RSS feeds,and information about your latest works, reviews, and items of interest about YOU. It doesn’t hurt to have a reader’s corner, either.

Have you gone out and researched other writer’s websites? You should! It is a fun and educational way to learn the items that others are using to get the word out about their work. And in case I haven’t said so in a while, if you are shopping a book out there, GET A WEBSITE!!!! It is never to early to have one!!

And speaking of websites... I have updated mine AGAIN. This time I am trying out Wordpress templates as a format. Give it a go and tell me what you think... THE SITE (and no, I don't have all the bells and whistles yet, but I hope to soon.) The good thing about wordpress is that it is widget friendly. And oh yeah. I am such a widget-head!

Kim Smith is the author of the Shannon Wallace Mysteries, and several contemporary romances. She is also the hostess of the wildly popular radio show Introducing WRITERS! on Blog Talk Radio.


s.w. vaughn said...

Excellent advice, Kim - and your site looks fantastic! How did you do that with Wordpress?! It's awesome! :-)

Kim Smith said...

It is self hosted, through Fantastico on my website. Just loaded the wordpress software, then found a template that I liked, and then viola! Really simple to do, and WP has a TON of templates that just rockkk.

Deb Baker said...

I love what you did! How creative! How did you design your graphics?

Kim Smith said...

Hey Deb! Thanks for visiting us :) hey everybody it's Deb Baker over here >>> :)!!

Anyway, it is a template. I didn't have to design anything and that is the great part about it!

Aaron Paul Lazar said...


Hey, Kim. That is a gorgeous front page! Nice work! Now I should go redesign my site! (sob)

Sheila Deeth said...

It's nice, clean, easy to read, quick to load. Very nice site.

Of course, I've just realized I have never been to the sites of any of those authors, though I've read a fair few of their books. Not sure what to make of that.

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

Thanks, Kim. Now you've got me thinking.