Sarah Lynn Kirkwood, who formerly worked in educational publishing, has some tips for what makes an author’s website decent. She makes some excellent points about Laurell K. Hamiliton’s site, namely that it’s great for content and updates, and yet is entirely unprofessional at the same time. Declaration: Needs a make-over!
Let’s look at some more UF websites. Who got it right and who missed the mark? (behind the cut)
Patricia Briggs has a pretty and useful site, but I would like it better if her home page came with an RSS feed so I could be informed of her updates without having to manually check it every day. Declaration: Needs accessories!
Kelley Armstrong has recently made some changes to her website, trading in the pentagram for some nifty flash images and photographs. Declaration: Looks good!
Kim Harrison operates her website herself, but it might be time to update the graphics and throw in some nifty flash images. White writing on black is hard to read. And the Drama Box would be more user friendly in a blog format. Declaration: Needs a make-over!
C.E. Murphy has her Live Journal entries as the main body of her home page. While I like the ease of being updated via RSS provided by LJ, I’m not sure putting the entries on the home page is the way to go. There’s something personal about these entries. Otherwise, the site is useful and modern. Declaration: Too much information!
Carrie Vaughn‘s site has lots of content, but like Hamilton and Harrison, it’s not as professional looking as others. It’s not a good sign when the author footnotes the main page with “Yes, I built the site myself. Don’t laugh.” Declaration: Needs a make-over!
Mark Henry‘s website is low on content, and maybe it’s just my browser, but each page takes a long time to load. And again, the black background is hard on the eyes. Declaration: Needs a make-over!
Charlaine Harris has a site that looks good and has lots of content, but here again, no RSS feed. I just don’t have enough hours in the day to manually check everybody’s website for new content. Declaration: Needs accessories!
For a long time Jim Butcher‘s site was clumsy, over-crowded and hard to use. Today, I find it much the same as it’s always been and now with advertising. Declaration: Needs a make-over!
Richelle Mead‘s site is easy to read and looks good. The content is average for an author of several books, though. Declaration: Needs more fun!
Rachel Caine‘s site is one of the best I’ve seen for content, given she writes so many books and uses several pen names. But again, the black background is hard on the eyes. Otherwise, this site is modern with lots of info. Declaration: Looks good!
Keri Arthur‘s site is great for content, and visual presentation– except for that black background! Declaration: Looks good!
What do you think of these sites? Do you like the ever-popular black background? And which author has a winning website? Feel free to mention anyone not already listed.