Two phone consultations today with possible website designers. These companies specialize in author websites, which I guess will save time. Still, there are way too many things to think about. One company offers a very attractive price up front, but it turns out there are add-ons. $800 for the basic package (compared to $2,000+ from some other companies), but then they’re going to host your site on their server for $240 per year. If you need to add more images — such as, for instance, book covers — they charge $100 per hour for that.
Will I own the rights to the graphic design they provide? And what happens to my site if their company goes belly-up? Good questions.
But the confusion in that area pales beside the confusion when I start thinking about marketing through social media. It’s a pig sty, basically. Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Google+, Vine, Goodreads, Bookbub — each with its own user interface to learn and its own arcane methods for connecting with people. You could spend 40 hours a week on this crap, never do a lick of writing, and never attract more than a handful of customers.
I don’t know what I would ever tweet about, nor how I would acquire followers. And the chirpy 25-year-old bloggers who purport to explain such things leave huge gaps in their explanations, either because they’re taking important things for granted and not bothering to explain, or because there aren’t any answers at all to those questions.
Today I ordered three hats from Amazon for an upcoming photo shoot. I’m not sure a hat will actually improve my appearance — maybe a catcher’s face mask would be a better option. But hats it is. $100 floating away on the wind.