When I was making my New Year's resolutions on December 31st, 2016, I was still in the query trenches. And I know it's not healthy to make goals you don't control, so I didn't put "get an agent" on my list of resolutions. As I thought about what more I could resolve to do that I wasn't already doing, I decided to make myself an author website.
I am no technology wiz, but I have been using Blogger since 2008, so I decided to stick with a Blogger website. I paid the $12 to have a custom domain name, and got to work.
What to put on an author website when you're a writer but not a published author? I figured if anyone went to my site, it'd be an agent who got the link from my query letter. So what might be interesting to them?
I don't have any publication credits, but if I had I would definitely have included them. I put up a photo of my family, my Twitter handle, some light information about myself. I made a page with my query letter and first chapter of the book I was querying. Finally, I made a page to list the most recent books I've read, because I love recommending books, and also because I think the books you read speak volumes about you. (That was an intentional pun; I'll show myself out.)
Now that I have an agent, I included a link to her agency on my site so people could check her out. I took the first chapter of my book down, but left the query up. And now that I'm working on a new book, I added a brief blurb about that book. Not a query letter, because I didn't have to write one for that book 👐
My website is very simple, and I did everything myself, including the logo at the top of the page. I used Canva, which is about as much art-related technology as I can handle. If my book sells, then I will probably invest the time and money into getting a more professional site that will appeal to future readers. Until then, I'll keep plugging along on my own.
If you'd like to check out my site, you can see it here: www.karareynoldswrites.com
In the comments, I'd love to hear what you like to see on the websites of "prepublished" authors.