My brochure for the New England Chapter’s annual conference came in the mail the other day. I can’t say enough about what a fabulous event this is every year. At about 200 people, it’s large enough to draw a good roster of agents, editors, authors, and speakers, yet small enough to be enjoyable and not at all overwhelming. The workshops are great–Debra Dixon, the Queen of GMC this year! Unfortunately, I probably won’t be going. My priority this year, whether or not I sell, is a website.
Since taking up blogging, I’ve been asked a few times if I have a website, or why I don’t have one.
I don’t, for two reasons. One, I’m very careful about how much money my husband puts into something that, so far, has seen no return. He’s very supportive of my writing, but he’s also been the sole financial supporter of the family for the last ten years. Two, I can’t think of enough to say about myself to fill a website.
I played around with the Geocities site that came with my Yahoo account for a while. No web design skills needed! Wooohooo! Well, it shows. I came to the conclusion, after looking around at some of the sites of my fellow aspiring writers and my own pathetic attempts with clipart cast-offs, that, like an agent, it’s better to have none than a crappy one.
I would never introduce a shabbily-dressed, illiterate guy and say, “This is Bob, my agent. He works for zero percent of my income, so I’ve chosen him to represent me and my writing.”
There are some fabulous websites out there from aspiring writers. They clearly represent dedicated, focused professionals. I’m sure if I were an editor, I’d be pleased to know that, along with the manuscript, comes an author well-versed in image and promotion–one willing to invest in her own career.
So one of my goals this year–one I can actually have some control over–is a professional website. Like editors and agents, I’ve got my wish list. We’ll see how it goes. For now I’ve got my blog and I’m content with that.
Jaci Burton said…
On words…spell them any damn way you want to. In fact, I use dumbass and dammit all the time. And I liked the way you spelled poufy. You can argue it with your final line editor later
Website….eh…unless you think you NEED it as a selling tool, it can wait. I agree with you regarding good vs shabby websites. Your website IS you. It represents you and should portray a professional image. A good website can impress the hell out of an editor or agent who happens to take a peek. A shabby or cheap website makes the writer look shabby and cheap.
However, if I were an editor, I’d commission you to write a book based on your blog alone. You’re doin just fine, honey
*snort* @ commissioning a book on my blog alone…
Dear Ms. Stacey,
After careful perusal of your blog, we would like to commission you to write a book for XYZ Publishing. We specialize in scientific case-study textbooks for mental health professionals, however, we occassionally like to provide them with the personal stories of writers we are confident will be future case studies. We find this to be both amusing and efficient.
We feel that your story would perfectly complement our “Before the Breakdown” imprint, and we look forward to hearing from you.
Shannon, your blog is great! I think you’re smart to plan a professionally-designed website, and the blog is a great start.