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arhyalon

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03:40 pm: New Website

I have a new website now.  It is still a work in progress. (I haven't even gotten links for buying books in place yet.)

Anyone who wants to look at it or to let me know what kind sof things you like to find on websites for writers, I'd really appreciate it.

http://www.ljagilamplighter.com/




Comments

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From:endiron
Date:September 8th, 2010 07:55 pm (UTC)
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Is it hard to get LJ to populate posts over into wordpress? I have a stub of a planned author site over there but have not got it in production yet. Did you use someone to make it or just use a template and build it yourself?

Sean "Bane" Kelley
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From:arhyalon
Date:September 8th, 2010 08:06 pm (UTC)
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I wish I could tell you how it was done, but the Infamous Webgoblin did it for me.
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From:arhyalon
Date:September 8th, 2010 08:13 pm (UTC)
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It occurs that I could give you a slightly more helpful answer. ;-)

The website is set up so that when I enter stuff in Word Press it automatically populates LJ. But I don't know how it was done. I just type stuff and it happens. ;-)
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From:mindyklasky
Date:September 8th, 2010 09:30 pm (UTC)
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It's easy to get Wordpress posts to forward to LJ *if* you use the correct plugin. After having two not work for me, I discovered JournalPress, and I've been thrilled with how easy it was to download, install, and set the, um, settings.
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From:annafirtree
Date:September 8th, 2010 08:31 pm (UTC)
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In your "about" section, it makes me curious that you list Ping-Ping second. Are they not listed by age?
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:September 8th, 2010 11:05 pm (UTC)
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That's because Orville is still the "eldest", an agreement we made with him before we adopted.
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From:annafirtree
Date:September 9th, 2010 12:01 am (UTC)
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That is awesome. Does that mean he gets to boss her around? ;)
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From:arhyalon
Date:September 9th, 2010 01:58 am (UTC)
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No. It's purely ceremonial. ;-)
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From:mindyklasky
Date:September 8th, 2010 09:33 pm (UTC)
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Pretty site - it looks like it's coming together nicely!

Do you intend to prohibit comments on the website blog entries? Or was I just too dense to figure out how to comment over there? (*Entirely* possible!)

If you want to add purchase links, tell your Infamous Webgoblin to head over to Courtney Milan's website, for a free script that will generate "buy" links when you enter an ISBN: http://www.courtneymilan.com/generateisbn.php (Please note that Courtney's default is to include her own affiliate information, so that she gets the credit for sales made through the links. You can change that with a click of a few keys.)
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:September 8th, 2010 11:08 pm (UTC)
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The plan is to have people comment on LJ, but I haven't yet figured out how to explain this.

The Webgoblin's plan was to give me the same link he used for Neil Gaiman's site, which feeds in an ISBN and gives a link to every bookseller imaginable since the dawn of time. I am still a little uncertain as to whether this may be overkill.
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From:mindyklasky
Date:September 9th, 2010 01:19 pm (UTC)
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Aha! It sounds as if you have all bases covered. (For my purposes, I felt like four sources was enough, in the bookseller specification game, but the more the merrier!)

As for sending people to LJ to comment, that should be an interesting experiment! My gut feel is that most people won't make a jump from one platform to another to comment, especially without a specific link to the specific comment field, so I'm continuing to monitor LJ, FB, and my new site, to respond to users on their own ground. I'll likely go nuts doing that, though, so I'll make some changes down the road!
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From:arhyalon
Date:September 9th, 2010 01:24 pm (UTC)
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I'll have to put in a link to lead them to comments...I just haven't fgured out exactly how to do it yet.
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From:axiem
Date:September 8th, 2010 10:10 pm (UTC)
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Honestly, the most basic thing I'd expect on anyone's personalish-professional website is a curriculum vitae of some sort.

In the case of a writer, I would expect a list of books/stories/&c that the writer has written along with links to buy said book/anthology/whatever, and preferably, some summary of the book/story/&c. In the case of novels, "read the first chapter!" things are nifty, though I understand publisher issues there. A good example, I think, is Neil Gaiman, though it doesn't need to be as heavily-layered as his is.

I also don't mind author pictures, or other stuff you'd expect on dustjackets in general. But really, curriculum vitae.
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From:arhyalon
Date:September 8th, 2010 11:10 pm (UTC)
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Neil and I share the same Webgoblin, so I'm getting similar advice. But then, I'm doing most of the work here, so it won't look as professional. The Illustrious Webgoblin is just advising me and helping me with the technical stuff.

Eventually, it should have a lot of that stuff...but it takes time to get it all together. Thanks for the list, though.
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From:axiem
Date:September 8th, 2010 11:26 pm (UTC)
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That's pretty cool, sharing the same Webgoblin. Very nice.

I realize it's still under construction. My comment wasn't meant to be a knock. It takes time to get things set up and working nicely. It's looking nice as-is, and I can't wait to see it grow and develop :)
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From:arhyalon
Date:September 8th, 2010 11:40 pm (UTC)
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No. No. I got it. ;-) I thought you had a great list, though. I'm already trying to work out several of your ideas.
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From:kokorognosis
Date:September 8th, 2010 10:12 pm (UTC)
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Looks pretty good so far! What are your plans for commenting?
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From:arhyalon
Date:September 8th, 2010 11:11 pm (UTC)
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To have people comment here on LJ. Haven't figured out how to tell them that yet though.
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From:mindyklasky
Date:September 9th, 2010 01:21 pm (UTC)
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Oh - in terms of instructing your users, you can put one sticky post at the top of your website, telling folks where your LJ blog is. I'm sure there are also tools to embed a link to the comments of your specific LJ posts, but I don't know what they are.

What made you decide to make LJ your primary blog, for commenting purposes?
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:September 9th, 2010 01:29 pm (UTC)
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Several things.

1) I have it all set up and already get emails with each post.

2) I'd rather the blog be kind of peaceful. If a post should spark an argument, I'd rather it be here--with no record of it on the website, which is more book related. (Most posts don't provoke arguments. But having had it happen, I'm now a bit wary.)

3)My husband has had problems on his Wordpress site getting all the features we have here (for instance, having avatar pictures show up.) There may be ways to do these things, but each one would require it's own fix, with time spent. Here on LJ, everything is already working.
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From:mindyklasky
Date:September 9th, 2010 01:36 pm (UTC)
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Makes lots of sense! (As for the avatar thing - that's the major piece of my website-blog that I haven't been able to make work. I have tried three different plugins, with no success. Avatars remain on the "to be done" list, but I'm just not sure when...
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From:arhyalon
Date:September 9th, 2010 01:56 pm (UTC)
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John's working on the Avatar thing, too. I'm sure you'll both get it eventually...but this way, it's already done.;-)
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From:cdenmier
Date:September 9th, 2010 05:25 pm (UTC)

Thoughts...

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Since you asked, I'll give you a few thoughts (keeping in mind I'm only mentioning things to fix...I like the basic design and the handy right rail).

- I would put the blog content on a separate tab for "Blog" and put more general content on the opening page...you know, basic stuff welcoming people to the site and giving them a general idea of what they'll find within. Your audience will be coming from all over. Perhaps the right rail can also serve to display the most recent posts (so that people know you have an ongoing, updated blog).

- I love author pictures and book cover pictures. They make the site pop and the separate pages stand out.

- Maybe put more stuff on the bio page. I believe one gentleman already posted desiring a curriculum vitae.
[User Picture]
From:arhyalon
Date:September 9th, 2010 05:40 pm (UTC)

Re: Thoughts...

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> I would put the blog content on a separate tab for "Blog"

I was just thinking about this while I was skating this morning. I have no idea why its set up this way. It seems kind of odd to me. Since people can come to the website from the url in the back of my books, hitting them with a blog seems kind of weird.

But...I think I will leave it that way until I get a chance to come up with a better opening page, which make take a little while. Eventually, there should be something cool there that does the stuff you mentioned. But what exactly, I'm not sure.

The book covers will be there soon, along with 'to buy' info. I will probably post the picture on the back of the book, the one my dad took, but ideally, it would be nice to have a recent photo or two, also. I don't have any, but I might be able to fix that.

Eventually, I'm sure more will be done, too, but at the moment I have to chose between writing and working on the site, so it will probably grow slowly.

Thanks!
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