The fact you aren’t published yet is no reason to not have your own web presence. Discover why unpublished authors need a website.
As an unpublished author, it may seem like overkill to start thinking about your website. It can be hard to wrap your head around the idea, and it may seem complicated if you aren’t familiar with the techniques and best practices involved.
I’ll just say this once. You need a website now.
It’s not enough to depend on word of mouth or social media to promote your work, and the sooner you build a relationship with your audience, the better.
Why you need a website
Practice makes perfect
Get familiar with web tools and web best practice so that when you are published, your site will already look polished.
Build an audience
You can invite email list subscriptions through your site, and keep your audience up to date with your activities. Once you publish your book, you will already have built up their trust.
What’s more, you can harness their support to help you with your launch, get some reviews in Amazon before publication and more.
Have ownership over your content
Sure, you can market yourself on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other platforms, but you don’t have control over those platforms. If they disappear (it could happen), you lose your carefully crafted words and the audience that you have painstakingly built.
Your author website is your space, over which you have control.Your author website is your space, over which you have control – Why unpublished authors need a website Click To Tweet
Impress publishers and agents
Agents and publishers will be impressed if you already have an online author platform. This platform can include your website, social media presence and email list.
They will see that you are serious about promoting your work, and that you already have an audience for it, however small.
Once your author website is listed in search engines and linked to from other places, you never know who will stumble across it and move you a step closer to publication.
Grab your domain name before someone else does
Your author domain name will form your web address. It will typically be just your name (or pseudonym), eg joebloggs.com, or initials and surname if you plan to publish your book using that format.
OK, so technically you can buy a domain name without creating a website, but why not use it once you have it?
Discover lots more advice on how to choose an author domain name.
Nothing to put on your site?
“Ok”, I hear you cry, “I can see that unpublished authors need a website, but I don’t have anything to put on it!”
Au contraire. As an unpublished author, you have a wealth of information just waiting to be launched into the webosphere.As an unpublished author, you have a wealth of information just waiting to launch into the webosphere. Click To Tweet
What to do next
- Look at your favourite authors’ websites to get ideas for your own.
- Decide on a domain name.
- Start to research setting up a site. It’s simpler than it may seem and there is a stack of advice out there. Check the date of blog posts to ensure you’re looking at recent advice. Just one example is Jane Friedman’s post, How to Build an Author Website.
- Remember to go over your site with a fine-tooth comb once you’ve built it. Small errors or layout issues can affect your credibility. If you need a hand checking your website for copy errors, layout issues, and SEO or accessibility concerns, I can help! I offer a web text editing and a website proofreading service.
If you are an unpublished author and have concerns about starting a website, tell me your pain points in the comments.