Opinion: 3 Things Every Author Should Have Online

Well, it’s March. A brand new month, with no brand-new (or even repeat) author to share with you this month. I was working on one that fell through, and didn’t have time to get a backup. Oh well, such is life.

So.

In lieu of a no-post day, I decided to give you more, well, me! (Yes, I know, you’re all whooping it up in celebration…) Today I wanted to share a few basics I look for with every author I host on the blog, whether it’s for a Q&A, guest post, cover reveal, excerpt – you name it, I’ve probably done it at one point or another. And if I haven’t, please don’t say anything. My brain cannot take any more inputs. (No, I’m not kidding.)

And now I’m going to step on my soapbox. 🙂

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3 Things Every Author Should Have Online

You’ve written a book, you say? Tell me about it! I won’t go into the how, there are plenty of other resources for that. But I will tell you what I as a reader, reviewer, and blogger, look for.

I do all of this online. Which means I need to be able to find you online. So here are the top 3 things I need you to have, so I can easily locate and share.

#1. A website. Preferably one that’s updated at least as regularly as your books’ release schedules. An author website that doesn’t have information on the book I’m reading or reviewing or blogging about, is just about useless to me.

Now, I know it’s not all about me (*sob*). I link to author websites so other readers can find you, check out what else you have to say, see all your pretty covers and such, and so on and so forth. If I (and they) can find you, we can find your books. N’est-ce pas?

Before I move on, I do want to ask that your website be easy to navigate. There should be a “Home” page, to welcome all visitors. There should be an “About” page, to tell us all about you (see item #2). Links to social media (point #3) should be easily accessible. And of course, there must be a bibliography – with covers and blurbs. Lastly, there should be a way to contact you. Notice there’s only one must, everything else is a suggestion. I’m not here to give you work that’s not writing your next story, after all…

#2. An updated author bio. Because I feel really silly copying a bio that refers to an “upcoming release” title that was published two books ago. Also, every author should have a short bio – y’know, the 1- or 2-paragraph length that fits in the back of a book. Have a nicely detailed lengthy bio on your website if you’d like, but please make sure there’s also a short one for us to snag and share. I always worry about parsing a full page into a blurb – what if I left out something you consider a must-have? I don’t want that kind of responsibility.

#3. Social media presence. You don’t have to be on Facebook and twitter and Pinterest and who-knows-where-else. But you should be on at least one of them. Why?

Because a website is where you put information about your stuff, but people have to come to you to get that information. Social media’s more like a conversation, where you say something, someone replies, you say more stuff, etc. It’s a give-and-take interaction, and you use it to share, and also to eventually tell people to go to your website to get more information about your stuff. The best thing about social media? It lets others share your stuff, with their friends and/or the general public. And the more people who know about your writing, your books, your fabulously awesome personality, the greater the opportunity to sell your stories.

So pick one you’re comfortable with, and go hang out with your fans.

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Well, that’s it. What do you think, whether as a reader, reviewer, or blogger? What else would you add to my list? And if you’re an author, am I asking for too much?

2 comments

  1. I agree about keeping the website updated! I am always disappointed if I catch wind of a possible new release and then can’t find any info about it!

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