Thursday, February 11, 2010

Do You Have A Website?

~~"Do you have a website?" and "Can I buy it online?" Well, as a matter of fact, I do and you can--Now. After having to answer these two questions with a negative over and over as I told people about my new book, An Easter Walk, I got the message. I needed to get more than a blog going. With two interviews planned, it became more important. In fact, I have just finished the first interview with Spencer Crawford for the Times-Georgian on Wednesday afternoon. So, on February 21, readers will get an article about me as a writer and about the book and will be able to buy it that day. ; )
~~After deciding to get the website started, I had to figure out how to do it. Since my only foray into programming was way back when I created mimeograph worksheets for my students with basic run/print statements on my Apple IIc, I couldn't create a website from scratch by myself. I do love Diana Black’s web designs, but I couldn't to use her wonderful services on the meager profit I'm making so far. Diana encouraged me try to find a web host with a template to use. She thought I could manage that. ; )
~~First, I looked at and their small business website builder, but it was still too rich for my pocketbook. Beautiful templates, though. John suggested I hunt for a list of rated web hosts and I found one. I figured I'd start with the top. There was one problem--I had tons of questions about just what the things listed on their service meant. I took me two days to get a person on the support line and then I couldn't understand him at all. Don't get me wrong, I'm very good at understanding accented English. Maybe it's because I speak with a strong Southern accent myself. Only the young man had the thickest, most rapid British accent I've ever heard. I'm sure he thought my questions were ignorant and stupid. He answered me like he assumed I was "a hick from the sticks" and "dumb as dirt." I take exception to both assumptions. That told me to keep searching. Add the fact, that he didn’t send me the link to the sample templates just made the decision to go elsewhere easy.
~~I went to the second site in the list— . They did assure me on their homepage that all their agents were in North America. I figured there wasn't an American or Canadian accent I couldn't understand and Mexican wouldn't be too bad either. ; ) I was right. Not only did the agents I've talked with help me, they didn't talk down to me either. The templates were simple Drag-and-Drop and there were several I liked. The challenge then became how to link my favorite image of a tree-lined walk in autumn to what I write. Once the title "Walk Among the Leaves With Me" with its lovely double meaning clicked, I was off. It has taken me a week to create the five webpages and publish.
~~So, if you have a minute, take a look at . I welcome all comments and suggestions. Many of you know so much more than I do about this. For those of you in the dark like I was, let me encourage you--you can do it, too.
~~Now to find the courage to try facebook and connect with my thousands of former students...