THE WORD ON THE .NET

Writer T. James' Exploration of Words, on the Internet.

Getting Your Book Out There, the Saga Continues – Website Design

With the release of My Mirror Self And I last week I have begun to explore the dark and murky world of marketing and publishing. It turns out that I should have done both whilst actually writing the book, instead of leaving it until after its release…

However, before getting in too deep with either, I felt I should have a reasonable website to direct people to, and that’s what I’ve spent the last few days working on. This is where I need your help. I’d love to know what you think of the website, whether it would encourage, or put you off buying the book. If you have any ideas for extra content, they would also be welcome.

So, if you have a little time to spare please take a look – just click on the picture of the book cover in the top left corner of the blog, have a play, and then return here and leave your opinions, ideas, and any suggestions in the comments section below. If you notice anything else you think that could help, or hinder, on the Amazon website for example then feel free to mention this as well. I’m very new to this and all your feedback helps. Thank you.

N.B: I have already tried adding Twitter and Facebook buttons to the webpage but were unable to get them to work satisfactorily. They were either too slow to respond, or did not work at all.

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15 Comments

  1. TJ,
    I love your website. Professional, concise and uncluttered. I have one suggestion – I found the ‘effect’ of the title hard to read, it disappears on the background. The rest I wouldn’t touch – very professional.
    :D

  2. I agree with Sandy. The title at the top is hard to read. I had to focus on it for several moments before I was able to read what it said. But other than that it looks great!
    The Amazon pages looks great as well :)

    • Hi Darcie, thanks for dropping by.

      I can see what you and Sandy mean. I’ll have a play with the tinting of the title’s backdrop, and see if that makes a difference, otherwise I’ll have to swap it for something plainer. Thanks for the feedback.

  3. I agree on the title. I’m also on the fence about the shattered glass effect of the background for the whole page.

    I don’t know about how others see it on different devices. I’m on a 24″ widescreen so I see considerable background with the web page in the center. What I notice is the shattered glass effect and light color acts to “pull me away” initially from the center where all the text is. It feels a little distracting, maybe?

    I almost tend to feel like backgrounds should simply “merge into the background” so the focus should be drawn to the center. I think that’s probably why so many web designers utilize basic dark backgrounds so the eye is drawn where it needs to go. Even Kelley Armstrong’s site as one immediate example:

    http://www.kelleyarmstrong.com/

    Anyway, just my impression. And no idea whether others might feel the same way.

  4. I think you did an awesome job on the website. But I do agree that the title is hard to read. Interestingly, I had to look a second time to notice the shattered glass background. In my opinion, the dark blue of the main area successfully pulled my eye. The shattered glass background was a nice subtle touch that barely registered.

    • Hi Matthew and Emma,

      I really appreciate you both taking a look. It seems, maybe with the exception of the title, I’m reasonably close.

      Your different reactions to the background just goes to show that people are really different in the way they perceive things. I’ll see what others have to say before changing that element…

  5. Hi TJ,
    The site does the job admirably. It’s professional and of course to the point. One thing that I’d suggest to you is that perhaps contacting some of the womens magazines like Take a Break. They’ve run features on books before and I think that the subject matter would appeal to thier readers.

  6. Agree with what everyone else has said, TJ. I like how it’s not busy. All the information you want or need is easy to find, but it’s still interactive enough (love the way the reviews pop up) to keep the interested party engaged. As for the title and the background – I must just be really unobservant because I didn’t notice either one until I read the comments here. My eye was immediately drawn to the cover, since the book is why I was on the page.

    After looking back at it, I do see what people mean about the title, but agree with Emma about the background. I thought it was subtle and a nice touch. My focus was on the blue.

    • Thanks Krista, I’m glad you enjoyed playing with all the doo-hickeys on the site. :-)

      There’s a consensus about the title so, when everyone who wants to has taken a look, I’ll change it so the words stand out more.

  7. Nice site, TJ. I pretty much agree with what’s been said so far.

    Marketing isn’t the most fun thing in the world, but it’s a sort of learn as you do thing. And I’m sure you’ll be fine.

    • Thanks Steve. I am trying to learn all the correct terminology to ensure success. So far my book’s PPR (public perception rating) remains generally high, but it is failing to gain significant traction in the marketplace.

      I am going to do breakfast with my people, and initiate a PPS (progressive promotion strategy). Or something… :-)

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