Case Study: Create Book Buzz with Author Websites

cat with typewriter
An author website is necessary to start building your fan-base BEFORE your book is published. WordPress makes it easy.

(Image credit: Underwhelmer)

Do you dream of writing the Great American Novel? Of adoring fans and endless royalty checks? Do you wistfully imagine your picture on the back cover of a NYT Bestseller?

These days, just writing the book isn’t enough. There’s a lot of competition out there vying for that publisher’s attention.

To help land a publishing contract, a lot of writers are creating author websites to help build their fan-base and create a buzz. Thank goodness for the Internet, huh?

Today’s case study shows how to use WordPress to create a simple author website.

Case Study: ChroniclesOfSilence.com

Author: Scott Farrell
Book Title: Chronicles of Silence
Link: ChroniclesOfSilence.com

Scott is a published non-fiction author, but this is his first attempt to publish a novel. Chronicles of Silence is meant for the young adult audience and is an exciting action story based upon the only female Knight of the Round Table.

Scott’s main business is the Chivalry Today Educational Program, where he shows how the Code of Chivalry can be an excellent guide for modern behavior. It wasn’t a far leap for his interest in the Middle Ages and the Code of Chivalry to lead to a novel, as well.

ChroniclesOfSilence.com

ChroniclesOfSilence.com Home Page

To create some separation between this new book and his regular business, Scott asked me to create a simple website just for his novel.

Site Planning

The first step was to map out how he wanted the site to flow. What pages and information did he want to display? Scott decided on the following:

  • Static home Page featuring information about the setting and how his idea for the book came about
  • About the Author page
  • Contact Page
  • Sidebar links:
    • excerpt
    • fan art gallery
    • information about female knights

Follow these step by step instructions to create a quick site like Scott’s.

Step 1: Create Pages

Remember, Pages are different than Posts. See the Post vs. Page article for a complete breakdown of how they are different.

add new page

Adding a New Page

    • Go to Pages>>Add New
    • Create a Page for home page

<li”>Click the Publish button on the right side

    • Go to Pages>>Add New
    • Create a Page for the blog

<li”>Click the Publish button on the right side

  • Repeat steps for About and Contact Pages
  • Don’t forget to hit “Publish”

 

Step 2: Static Home Page

set home page

Setting a Static Home Page

  • Go to Settings>>Reading
  • Under Front Page Displays, choose “A Static Page”
  • Select correct Page from dropdown
  • Select correct Page for blog from dropdown
  • Click Save Changes at bottom of screen

 

Step 3: Create Sidebar Links

Scott wanted these links to go to a category, rather than an individual post, so that he could add additional information later. To achieve this, we took the following steps:

manage categories

Manage Categories Page

 

  • Go to Posts>>Categories
  • Create a category and click the Add Category button at the bottom
  • Repeat for each category

 

category widget

Adding a Widget

 

  • Go to Appearance>>Widgets
  • Drag the Categories Widget to your Sidebar
  • Enter the widget Title and click “Save”

 

Create Posts

Now that we’ve created these lovely sidebar links, we need to put something there for people to see when they click on them!

add new post

Add New Post page

 

  • Go to Posts>>Add New
  • Add a Title in the top box
  • Create your post in the main edit box
  • Select the category on the right side
  • Save by clicking the Publish button
  • Repeat to create posts for each category

 

Summary

As you can see, the steps to create a simple Author’s Website are pretty quick and easy. Many more features can be added with not much more effort. It takes a lot longer to compose the Post and Page content than it does to create the site itself.

Questions?

What are your questions about creating an author website? Do you plan to create a website for your novel or book? Leave a comment and let’s talk about it!

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