Redesign and Relaunch of Alvah’s Books

by Rebeca on February 23, 2013

It’s been nearly two years since I stopped writing for Alvah’s Books. As much as I love to read and recommend books, working at the magazine and other writing projects took me away from reading and reviewing.

My time is still tight. I’m still writing and editing for the magazine; I’m still working on my own novel; I’m blogging at rebecaschiller.com about my own writing misadventures; and I’m also trying to keep up with my daily activities. I miss reviewing books, but now that my reading stack is more manageable, I’ll start reviewing very soon.

In the meantime, I’ve decided to start fresh and redesigned the site. Why, when it was good the way it was? A simple answer: It looked too busy, and I was inspired to change the look because of a project I worked on that had me visiting several book review sites.

Now this isn’t a criticism of my fellow book review bloggers—merely an observation. Sometimes it’s best to keep it simple: no badges, no flashing graphics, no curling, twirly, twisty fonts, not too many images, and cutesy photos of the pets and children, and no black backgrounds. Why? Simply because it takes a long time for a page to load, but also it’s distracting to the visitor who is looking for information about a book.

When I’m not writing, I’m a part-time social media and public relations consultant for authors. On occasion clients ask me about their website designs and what they need to do set them apart from others. I  recommend to keep it professional with a touch of personalization as an accent. Think a basic foundation, but with a splash of color.

With this redesign of Alvah’s Books, I took my own advice. It’s still a work in process, but the plain white theme you see here will be more or less the same. The header might change. We’ll see how I can make it a little more eye-catching, but maintain its simplicity.

That’s all for now. By next week I should have a review for you.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

D D Falvo February 24, 2013 at 10:23 am

Well done, Rebeca! Your site looks gorgeous. It fosters that delicious feel of hardback leather and creamy pages that my fingers itch to handle.

RebecaSchiller February 24, 2013 at 11:32 am

@D D Falvo That’s exactly what I wanted to capture. I wish I could do something with the padding and make it look like tooled leather, but I think that gets into some serious coding (I’m not quite there yet).

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