What is the best way for an author to share his/her creative writing with the world? Obviously publishing it in a book, audiobook, anthology, or comic book is the #1 method, but that’s just one element of the author’s “platform”. Social media also plays a large role in your ability to share your writing with the world, but I believe an author’s most important tool is their website.
Sites like Facebook and Twitter are PACKED with links, images, and content, so it’s hard for people to see your content, links, and images through all the “dross”. But if you can get them to your website (using interesting and relevant content), you have them all to yourself. Your website is the place to showcase yourself to the world, and it’s the most valuable tool at your disposal.
Be warned: a crappy, poorly-designed, and hard-to-navigate website is as much a “turn-off” as a crappy book cover, a novel filled with plot holes and cardboard cutout characters, and a plethora of typos and grammar mistakes. A beautiful, streamlined, user-friendly website is like a well-crafted novel: it increases your chances of “hooking” readers.
To that end, I highly recommend WordPress.
I’m not going to get into all the technical aspects of WordPress, but suffice it to say that WordPress is a content management system that’s designed to make it easy for YOU to set up your website the way you want it.
WordPress has thousands of amazing themes, many of which are completely free to use:
- The 33 best free WordPress themes on Creative Bloq
- 60+ Best Free WordPress Themes for 2016 on Code in WP
- 56 Best Free WordPress Themes 2016 on A Themes
- 50+ Beautiful & Free Responsive WordPress Themes to Build Awesome Websites 2016 on Color Lib
These free themes are all amazing for setting up websites that is as simple or complex as you want.
Of course, the premium templates are much more versatile and user-friendly, but they come with a price tag (some upwards of $100). I will say that the premium templates are worth buying when the time comes, but it’s usually best to start with a simple theme.
With WordPress, you don’t need much in the way of tech savvy. WordPress is designed to be VERY user-friendly, and it’s simple to set up your site by uploading your theme, customizing it, and adding pages/posts/widgets as desired.
Want to get started? Here are a few great how-to guides to setting up a WordPress website from scratch: