We all know we need to be creating this ‘Author Platform’ but what makes a good one anyway? I personally like to work by examples and see what other people are doing. Here are ten websites that do their authors justice. If you know any others I would love to know in the comments.

1. Jane Friedman

I always seem to stumble on Jane’s blog. I think she comes up allot in curated content from other blogs.

Why I like it?

Simple and straight forward design. I like at the top how there is two options, ‘Hire Jane’ and the email icon. There is also a static menu bar that doesn’t move as you scroll down which is definitely a nice feature.


2. Joanna Penn 

One of my favourites and as a fan I admit I’m a little biased towards Joanna’s site The Creative Penn. 

Why I like it?

First of all I like her static start here page because there is just so much information on The Creative Penn’s you can get lost down the rabbit hole. The graphic with her gazillions of books is also great and gives an overall snapshot of her author awesomeness.


3. Allison Tait

Allison has been writing 20+ years and blogs about writing, whimsy and life according to her site’s tagline.

What I like about it?

OK I’m a sucker for watercolour and peach. The fonts and design is consistent and her pictures always have the same vibe. I also like the tree with words on it which is consistently on everything she does. Great branding all round.


4. Steven Pressfield

Amazing resource for authors and writers but also very functional and clear.

What I like about it?

It’s dark and showcases Steve’s books in all it’s wonder down a sidebar and I also like Blog posts are themed and shown on the side as well. Simple and concise layout that functions well.


5. Michael Hyatt

Michael is an ex CEO of a publishing company and also passionate about blogging so you would expect his site to be amazing which it is!

What I like about it?

First I love the ‘as featured in’ graphic which gives a little social proof up front and the large header with a headshot is effective. The colours and fonts are all cohesive and consistent (theres that word again). Everything is also really big which seems to be the latest thing at the moment.


6. Alain de Botton

The writer/philosopher has a fitting site design that you would expect of a writer/philosopher.

What I like about it?

The slider on the front page is a nifty one! Alain’s books are showcased in an interactive slider that stands out and make you just want to play with it on your fist visit. The design is simple and clean. It’s vibe is zen, calm, philosophy, English, White and Black.


7. Sophie Kinsella

The uber successful chick lit author does girly author platform just perfectly.

What I like about it?

All useful information is condensed under the slider with the heading Sophie’s World. Colours a great but its not all matchy matchy. Graphics are also good which suits her target market and style of books.


8. David Gaughran

I discovered David’s site recently and he has a great Start Here Page and is an amazing resource for authors.

What I like about it?

Sidebar is great with books and jam packed with information which gives it that busy feel which I like. Also has some great pages like ‘the basics’, ‘media and ‘readers’.


9. E.L James

Author of Fifty Shades of Grey E.L James has an author website that is slick and represents her readers well.

Why I like it?

The looking glass is clever and it’s dark in a romantic ind a way. Also like how it introduces her right off the bat. No trying to find a picture of the author, everything is up front. Simple design but probably the right fit for her audience.


10. Tim Grahl

Marketing guru and author of Your First 1000 Copies has a perfect website if you want to make an impact and if you write non-fiction.

What I like about it?

Bold colours, large fonts and pictures, this author website is right in your face. Email sign up is displayed prominently on the front page and navigation is down with no menu up top. Unusual but it works.


As you can see there is no one size fits all but I think the key is, you have to start some where and your author platform is going to evolve with your books and as your voice and products expand so will your design. One brick at a time is all you need to start building your platform.