by Joseph T. Sinclair
In a prior post I suggested that a reasonable way to publish a book is to establish it as a website. How do you make a book website easily and efficiently? Use WordPress. It has a lot of built in attributes that will save you a lot of time and effort.
- You can use either Page menus or Blog Post menus for navigation. Either will support your chapters (and other book components) listed automatically with links. The Posts will have dates. However, dates are appropriate for chapters that are updated occasionally. Each Page or Post has its URL displayed in the edit view.
- You can choose to include, or not, Comments after each Page or Post, and WordPress handles the Comments.
- Most recent WordPress templates are now responsive. That means they automatically adapt their format when accessed by a smart phone or tablet to accommodate the smaller screens.
- WordPress takes third-party plugins. Plugins are simply programming to enhance WordPress functionality. If you need some special programming, someone may have already created it and is making it available to others either free or for a price.
- WordPress has a build-in search function, which makes a usable index for your book.
- SEO functionality is built in and easy to use.
- There are hundreds of themes to choose from. Themes are different visual website designs.
- Anyone can use WordPress. You don’t have to be a programmer. Training on how to use WordPress is widely available.
- There are Internet service providers (ISPs) that provide multiple websites and multiple automatic WordPress installations for one very low monthly cost. WordPress itself is free.
- And more.
To develop a book website otherwise would take many hours of work and some substantial Web development expertise. To have someone do it for you would cost thousands. However, if WordPress isn’t for you (for whatever reason), you would only have to develop a book website once, and you could reuse it as a template for dozens of books.
One disadvantage of using WordPress is that you can’t take a WordPress website and easily convert it into a book app (for iTunes of Google Play), as you can with a purely HTML5 website. Nor can you zip the WordPress files together (into a ZIP file) and deliver your book website to be downloaded and used offline on a user’s computer. WordPress has to be installed on the user’s computer, a burdensome process. Perhaps these aren’t so important when anyone with a smart phone can access your responsive book website via the Web
You can take the HTML webpages developed for a generic format and use them as your core content. Then you can copy and paste them into WordPress, or you can adjust them to be converted into a book app. Thus, WordPress is a viable platform for books even when you convert your books into other formats.
The author of this article, Joseph T. Sinclair, is the author of twenty How2 books published by national publishers.
For low-cost non-exclusive reprints rights for this article, contact sales@AuthorsAndPublishersDigitalReview.
©2016 Joseph T. Sinclair. All rights reserved.