Having an author site for yourself (and your latest piece of work you’re promoting) can be quite important in getting word out about you and your books. Even if you’re unpublished, having an author site can show a publisher that you already have and are more than willing to promote yourself and your work.
Blogger.com is a popular choice for many people, and is they way I got started in blogging. An easy to navigate and visually pleasing site, I recommend blogger to those just starting out in blogging and/or in HTML.
When you sign up with Blogger, it’s easy to find your way around with easy-to-understand-and-read terms and fonts. For the new blogger, it’s as easy as signing up with a valid email address, picking your blog title, template, and URL, and then going off to post! The blogger unfamiliar with HTML can step in and start posting without having to worry about any bits of code. However, the basic codesmith can easily switch over to the “Edit HTML” tab and give it a go.
After Blogger’s recent switch to “the New Blogger,” it’s even easier to make your blog your own - no HTML experience needed. All you need do is drag and drop elements as you want them to look, and you can have a preview. For the HTML dabbler, this can be a good thing as well because you can drag and drop the main elements as well as add your personal touch in the raw template.
If you’re looking to make a little cash with your blog, you’re likely thinking to go the popular way of Google adsense. Blogger has that covered in an easy add-on in the drag and drop template manipulation section. All you have to do is sign up for it.
However, Blogger has its down points as well.
To sign up for the new Blogger, you have to have a Google account or you will be signed up for one. This isn’t a strong negative, but if you’re like me, you groan at the thought of signing up for yet another thing you won’t use. I have yet to explore to see exactly what I can do with my new account with Google.
Blogger’s main function is for its users to be able to blog. Your posts will go up in diary style format and will be archived all the same. If you want a Bio page, Blogger does give you a profile page. However, it is meager and you want something more, plan on having a blog all about you with its own unique URL just sitting there.
Finally, Blogger is meant mainly for blogging, as I said above. Thus you have a blog, but that’s about all. If you have seen other author sites and like the idea of having a page for your prose, a page for your poetry, a page for your blogging, etc, be prepared to have quite a few blogs. I know quite a few people who manage this and manage it well, but I prefer to have everything I want and need on one site, one URL.
Blogger is my definite recommendation for people starting out and those who want to start experimenting with template HTML. However, if you’ve been using it for a good amount of time now, I recommend branching out and trying a few other spaces so you can find your true fit for your needs.
Some links to templates:
Aspiring Romance Writer uses the Thisaway Rose template provided by Blogger.
Hawke uses a template I partially designed myself. This is an example of how you can use a base template and experiment with a few things to get the look you want, and you don’t have to know how to make a template from scratch.
Infinite Monkeys uses an original, monkey-themed template.
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