Should you go with just an Author Blog or both a Blog and Book Website? My take on this tricky question for self-published authors.
A close friend of mine is in the process of publishing her novel. She asked me whether or not she should create a separate book website similar to mine, to go with her author/personal blog. It’s a great question that I wanted to share with you, my loyal readers.
Pros of Going with a Book Blog and Website
1.) If you ever plan to write about a different series/world/genre, it helps to differentiate. For example, lets say I suddenly decided to write about paranormal fantasy. Most people reading this blog wouldn’t be extremely interested. But I could continue to update my book website with small tidbits and bonus features. Alternatively, I could create a book website just for my new series, and keep this current blog focused on alternate history and steampunk (A much better idea).
2.) Flexibility – different sites offer different capabilities. Some require a lot of money to really stretch the boundaries, or a personal web designer. I also like having a separate site because I can send people to the Wix site via mobile or through my business cards. It looks professional and is topic specific – focusing on the novel, not on self-publishing as a whole.
3.) Fan Support – A book website with a forum can allow fans to discuss and present their ideas on that site, and allow you to monitor your readers’ ideas and input, without having to sift through different areas.
Cons of Going with a Book Blog and Website
1.) Time – You have to make and upkeep two separate sites. My Wix site is still waiting to be updated with Roma Aeronautica’s information. That’s on the agenda for this weekend.
2.) Money – You have to pay to host two websites. Or alternatively, deal with annoying free ads and such. It depends on your own choices too. brasslegionnaire.com is a lot more professional sounding than wix.brasslegionnaire.com after all.
3.) Separation of readers – This is a possibility if you have multiple blogs. You can separate your readership and reduce traffic to each site individually. That being said, you can also allow specific segments of your readership to ignore parts that they don’t care about, and focus more on what they enjoy and like!
So looking back, what would I recommend?
Well, personally, seeing as how I already have two sites and plan on building the world of the Steam Empire Chronicles to include ten different stories, I think a separate site for them is great! Especially when I plan on creating an additional series or world.
Would I recommend two sites to a beginner? Absolutely not. If you want to blog, then you should focus on creating a blog and building that audience faithfully and consistently. Small steps are easier to take, rather than big leaps.
What do you think? One or two sites? More?