Great Author Websites

Yesterday’s release of the new Captain Underpants book (yes, that’s right) reminded me of how very much I adore the website for this silly kid’s book series. My youngest daughter (and okay, her father) find this series absolutely hilarious. Yeah, it’s mired in the potty, but it’s also far smarter than one would assume. Here’s what has impressed me about Dav Pilkey’s website:

Most online resources for business books simply try to sell you the book, or the author’s services. Not His site accomplishes what few author sites do: he recaptures the essential spirit of his books on the web, by producing a range of online features that are perfectly aligned with the book’s heart and soul. There’s no blog, no links, and of course no advertising. Instead he has posted songs and videos and games and heaps of extra stuff that is perfectly “mission-driven,” to apply a business term. His site is not an online advertisement, but a re-invention of the book’s world on the online space.

Interestingly, another author who has taken her work to the web with great imagination is Jan Brett—who also writes for children. She, too, writes with an extremely well-realized and distinctive voice, and her site serves as a new platform for her work. Her books are visual treats anchored by her large, open illustrations. And the site builds on this by sharing numerous ways for visitors to download images from her many books, for starters; and also to use these images as coloring books, cards, games, murals, and much more. It’s easy for a reader of her work to lose hours of their time here, productively.

I think that there’s something to the fact that each of these children’s authors has an extremely well-realized voice and overall “look-and-feel” that has helped them translate their work to a new medium with authenticity. I will look for business author sites that do the same. At the moment, the ones that comes closest in my opinion are Guy Kawasaki and Tom Peters.

Posted by tom at August 16, 2006 01:02 PM
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