Thursday, January 15, 2009

What Makes a Cool YA Author Web site?

Tip of the Day: The 12 Months of Debsmas starts today! What's this you ask? Well, each month on the year on the 15th, the 2009 Debutantes are giving away a gift bag full of 30 "treats, delights, novelties and oddities donated by the authors of Debut 2009!" So cool, you must check it out!

So lately I’ve been obsessing about my Web site. Translation: nagging my dear husband to make me a New! Cool! Fun! Web site.

It’s not that my Web site is bad or anything. You can look at it— It’s just I keep seeing other cooler YA author Web sites and I want mine cooler too (I’m such a follower huh?)

Like, have you seen Cheryl Renee Herbsman, or Stephanie Hale? Or one of my all-time favs, Simone Elkeles? So freaking cute. I would LOVE a site like theirs but maybe I should start with something simpler until I have more books?

I do like the idea of a site where your recent blog posts generate to the front page Like Meg Cabot has, cuz she’s my hero you know. And it provides new content all the time on your page. I noticed Mandy Hubbard’s cute site does this too if you hover over her blog titles. My site has my blog too but it shows too many. Maybe I’ll keep that feature but modify it a bit.

Or maybe I need a cool, beautiful site like Carrie Ryan’s? Though, my books are more light/fun so this might not work.

Ugh. This is hard!

I need something that says cute but isn’t necessarily tied into my book cover or anything. Especially since, I don’t know what my book cover looks like again. Oh yeah, about that. My pub has decided to come up with a brand new cover. Let’s all cross our fingers for super cuteness! But back to web design. Sometimes I think it should tie my main site in with coffee anyway or a cafĂ© or something. Just because I’m such a coffee freak. But I don’t know. Should I stay away and do something just generically cute?

So anyway, we are still just at the discussion stage of the new site—anyone want to pipe in with some ideas for me?

Kristina, Miss Delighted to Debut


Ghost Girl (aka, Mary Ann) said...

Oh thanks for posting this, Tina. I'm starting to think about mine, though mine will tend a little more towards the dark side. But the biggest question for me is not so much what it will look like, but what will it include? Although I love those clever little interactive elements, like Stephanie Hale's locker set-up.

sorry, I'm no help at all. Hmmmm....something steamy...and steamy! You know what I mean? (wink). Definitely have some fun with the barista, the creamy steamy coffee, and the books.

But then again, I guess my question would be how much you want to tie yourself to this first book—thematically? Of course, when book #2 comes out, you can always make more thematic adjustments.

Have fun with it!

Kate Fall said...

I have to admit, Simone Elkeles' site is my favorite, too. Maybe you could do something like that with a coffee bar setting? Although your husband would be amazing if he could set that up.

DeenaML said...

I like the coffee theme idea. It ties into your first book AND speaks to the fact that you write at coffee shops, and that you love coffee. I think if your bio says something like that, about coffee and books, the theme would carry over. :)

Kristina Springer said...

Thanks for the opinions guys! :-)

Emily Marshall said...

I would keep it general if I were you, so it's easier to switch when you get more non-coffee related books. But you could still do a fun, coffee-related page for your current book.

nadine said...

You could stick to the coffee theme and have each page titled with a type of coffee. Like cappuccino or double mocha or something like that. It would be creative. Although it might be difficult to find a type of coffee for like a bio page or something..

Angela said...

I'm not so tied into what the website looks like as whether or nto the content is any good and new. My favorite author websites are ones with lots of information scattered around the various pages where I can learn more about the author and the books I love. The blog is great because it's constantly updating. What about adding deleted scenes or character backstories that didn't fit in the book but are still interesting? Also, links to interviews/reviews/other notable news is also great.

I hate it when I read a book, then try to go online to find the author website/blog and there either isn't one or it's outdated and has nothing interesting to read besides "go buy my book on this day" kind of a thing.