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Writer's Room => Picture Books (PB) => Topic started by: christy-matthes on July 24, 2021, 07:44 AM

Title: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: christy-matthes on July 24, 2021, 07:44 AM
 :help2
Hi,

It has been recommended to me that an author's website be established before being published. I'm about 1/2 finished with the design and wonder: Can you call yourself an author before actually being published? I want to place on my header children's book author, but should I call myself a writer?

I've seen a few opinions on this and thought I'd throw this out there to the SCBWI community.

Thanks.
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: dkshumaker on July 24, 2021, 11:23 AM
Hi Christy,

I don't think it matters a great deal. No one is going to likely notice. But, for what it's worth, I called myself a Children's Writer on my website when I was pre-published. I felt more comfortable with that title.
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: christy-matthes on July 24, 2021, 12:06 PM
Thank you! I appreciate the input.
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: mrh on July 24, 2021, 12:10 PM
I think the general understanding is to use "author" after publication and "writer" either before or after. But it's not a huge deal.
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: Vijaya on July 24, 2021, 02:38 PM
I like "writer" because that's what I truly am and even if nobody publishes my work I'll always be a writer :writing3
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: JulieM on July 24, 2021, 04:51 PM
Ditto. I did the same as has already been mentioned, just for my own comfort.
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: 217mom on July 24, 2021, 05:46 PM
What they^ all said.

One thing that makes me chuckle are posts that refer (pre-published) to themselves as "aspiring writers." I contend that if you write with professional intentions, you already are a writer. You are not aspiring, unless you dream of writing but never actually do it.

Glad you are creating a website. That turns out to be a very good thing to do/have as you set on the journey to publication.

Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: Hopeful on July 25, 2021, 04:33 AM
I like "writer" because that's what I truly am and even if nobody publishes my work I'll always be a writer :writing3
I love your quote.
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: christy-matthes on July 25, 2021, 08:50 AM
All helpful, thanks. Agree, that even though I'm not published yet, I am a writer (not an aspiring writer). 
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: Vijaya on July 25, 2021, 10:50 AM
Thank you, Hopeful.
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: christy-matthes on July 25, 2021, 11:21 AM
Love the quote too! Decision made: Writer it is...:)
I was leaning in that direction and the feedback really helped. Thanks again!
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: cynthia-bauman on August 18, 2021, 06:14 PM
Hi Christy,

Thank you for asking this question, and to all the great answers! I did not know I had this question too, until I read your post, so this is quite helpful. I have a follow-up question about author/writer websites before being published: (please let me know if this should be a new thread too.)

What kinds of things are recommended to go on a website, when there isn't any published work yet?

Thank you for any suggestions. :)

Cheers,
Cindy

Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: angel-dike on August 23, 2021, 05:34 AM
What kinds of things are recommended to go on a website, when there isn't any published work yet?

This is exactly what I came here to ask today, thank you so much for asking it. My book is with a publisher (no agent) they said that the contract would be with me before then end of the month, so I thought I would start organising myself

Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: dkshumaker on August 23, 2021, 07:39 AM
What kinds of things to put on a website before being published? I wondered that, too, when I started a website before I had books published. I did have 4 magazine articles published, so I included brief descriptions of those. . .

But, I also considered it just a "landing" place to show agents and editors I was serious about writing. So I had a "Home" page and an "About Me" page, then a page with my magazine articles. If you go to my website, the information on the Home Page and About Me page haven't changed much, even after I got my books published. In fact, just a one page "About Me" page should be sufficient for beginners. It's probably most important just to secure your domain than actually starting the website.

It doesn't have to be fancy and it doesn't have to be much. (Feel free to check out my website at www.debrashumaker.com.)
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: christy-matthes on August 23, 2021, 08:10 AM
Very helpful! Thank you for including the link to your website.

Since posting my question (thank you all for responses), I have completed the outline for my design and settled on a simple approach--Home Page, About Page, Contact Page. I'll include a few pictures and a Fun Facts about me to liven things up a bit.
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: 217mom on August 23, 2021, 08:16 AM
What Debra said^. A landing page (sometimes called "home"), About Me (short, with photo) page, books page (pre-published you can have it say "coming soon") and some way to contact. Pre-pub all of this can even be on one page until you develop further and have a cover image.
But the single most important is to get/reserve the domain, even months before you are ready to make a site. If you haven't already, do it today.
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: angel-dike on August 24, 2021, 04:26 AM
Thanks everyone, this has been so so useful and thanks Debra for sharing your website
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: dkshumaker on August 24, 2021, 06:09 AM
Thanks everyone, this has been so so useful and thanks Debra for sharing your website
You're welcome! There are so many great author websites out there, most so much better than mine. But I remember the doubt starting one before I was published and just wanted to assure others that you don't need much to start one.
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: cynthia-bauman on August 24, 2021, 12:53 PM
Wow, thank you everyone, so very much! I have devoured all of your answers and find them so incredibly helpful.

Angel,  I smiled when I read your post that my question was helpful to you, thanks for telling me that. It's always a little scary to be a new poster in an established group, so thank you for that confirmation.

Debra, thank you so much for sharing your website and your journey - - - so so so helpful! Also great point 217mom about a domain name, yikes, I hadn't even thought of that. Will now make that a priority.

What a wonderful resource this group is, I am so very grateful to all of you.
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: angel-dike on August 26, 2021, 04:56 AM
I just want to say that I took everything on board and completed my website yesterday, I am actually really happy with it.
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: dkshumaker on August 26, 2021, 06:37 AM
I just want to say that I took everything on board and completed my website yesterday, I am actually really happy with it.
Yay! Good for you! :-)
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: cynthia-bauman on August 26, 2021, 05:30 PM
I just want to say that I took everything on board and completed my website yesterday, I am actually really happy with it.


Congratulations, that is great!!! I am impressed.   :yippee

I have 2 more questions for the group on the topic of website building: (Wondering if it's time for a new thread for this?)

Is it okay to blend an author website with my counseling work? The reason I am asking this is because I need a website for both, and the children's book(s) I am writing are stories that weave healing into the children's psyche's in a poetic way, but it is based on the type of work I do in my counseling sessions. Soooo... I'm thinking it would be better to separate them, but has anyone ever successfully had a website where one tab is for their writings/books/publications, and the other tab is for something else that might be related?

Also, is there a way to secure my domain name, even though I don't know yet which company will be hosting my website?

Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: Vijaya on August 26, 2021, 06:43 PM
Cynthia, I've seen a couple of people do that, combining both their writing and counseling and I'm trying to remember whether they were just different pages on the same website or if they were pointing to completely different websites. 

As to securing your domain name, you can do this through GoDaddy. It's what I use.
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: cynthia-bauman on August 26, 2021, 07:42 PM
Thank you Vijaya! That is very helpful.  And, I have just secured my domain name, so that's a start!  :)
Title: Re: Author Website-Before Published
Post by: Debbie Vilardi on August 27, 2021, 04:45 PM
It's hard to say if you need two sites or one. Do both pages have the same audience? In other words, would your writing site be geared toward families with kids who need counseling? Consider that books can be marketed globally, but in-person counseling services would be for people who live near you. Also think about whether your audience in one may expand. Will agents and editors looking at your site be interested in what you want parents of patients to see? Will you ever write for a different age group o on a non-related topic. (You could always separate later, but I think it's important to consider possibilities and options.) I think answers to these and similar questions will help you decide what you really need.

Keep in mind that websites change over time. I also started with a home page and bio page. My site includes my resume because I seek work-for-hire opportunities. I now also have books listed as well as other publishing credits. My site needs a redo with more images, but you're welcome to have a look https://www.debbievilardi.com/. I also kept the landing page simple.