Monday, January 10, 2011

I Hate Your Website

This week we're talking about what attracts us to a website and what turns us off. I'm a pretty straightforward chick. I'm not a "yes-man". I'm the one you come to when you want honesty delivered (but hopefully in a nice way).

1) Number one thing I hate on websites is music. I dig music, don't get me wrong. But every time I click on a link on the person's page (like to read an old post or pull up comments) the music resets and I hear it load from the beginning... again. HATE IT.  Some of my friends, who have music, please don't take offense. I immediately hit mute when I go to your pages. It has become habit.

2) Overly girly stuff or lots of graphics. Or lots and lots of pictures of YOU. This is what got me to stop going to LKH's site. I liked her better when she was fat and didn't post freaky-ass pictures of her and her long-haired hubby. Thanks for killing the magic for me.

3) Dark backgrounds with red, white or light-colored text on them. It's very hard on the eyes. I will not come back to visit. I directed a few readers to pages like that when I was a guest and they actually wrote to me they couldn't finish the interview because it was so hard to read.

4) Sites filled with lots of flashing ads. Are you trying to make me have a seizure? Look, we know you didn't pick that ad, per se. But you did agree to allow the ads and you should be spanked for the headaches they give.

Over all, I'm not thrilled with my own website at the moment. Every time I go to change it I find myself drawn back to the simple, clean, un-cluttered lines of my current design - or one vaguely similar. I think I'll be working on a new one this month. It needs something. 

But you can bet there won't be music, lots of graphics, flashing ads, loads of pictures of me, or a black background with light text. Or maybe I'll stick to writing. I seriously need to get book two done.

What do you guys hate? Or, more importantly - what makes you stay at a new site?


  1. CJ, boy do I agree with you about the photos of the author - some of them might want to look in the mirror a bit! LOL! Depending on the genre, I'm with you on the girlie stuff too, or TCTL syndrome.

    I love black backgrounds, but **sigh** they are difficult to read. One of the sites I love is the one for Secret Garden, the musical group. They have vines growing and birds flying and some music, but then, they are in the music business.

    And amen to the flashing ads. We aren't selling Viagra. Not yet, anyhoo...

  2. Viagra! *snort* That would be freakin' hilarious!

    Flash! It's big.

    Flash! It's not.

    Thanks for the visual - it made me laugh!

  3. Oh, great, Sharon. You just gave C.J. some ideas for the third VV book "Vampire Vacation: The Flash."

    You know, C.J., you're not going to attract a lot of tweeners and members of the hip-hop generation with these comments.

  4. Yeah, well, they have no cash anyway ;-) I feel uncomfortable when first year college kids read my stuff. I keep thinking "ex-squeeze me? Do you even know what the sex stuff is I'm writing?"

    Although, I have to admit I learned a lot from the books I read way back then! I'm educating and corrupting a younger generation all at the same time - Whoot! Now how's that for a good days work?

  5. Yeah, I kind of figured that after the first chapter of "Vampire Vacation."

    Just kidding, of course.

    But, it would be nice to find the perfect solution for a website.

  6. With you on the music, C.J. and I especially try to keep the girly stuff of my own websites! :)

  7. I agree on the music and flash ads. I automatically click the stop or pause button on the music, or just turn my speakers off.

    I love black/dark backgrounds though. I try to balance it with white backgrounds in the actual posts (like on my blog) cause I agree it is hard to read white words on a black screen.

    As for graphics, I think if they are done in moderation and follow a theme then they look really nice. Other wise it's just too much clutter.

    Oh, and don't worry about corrupting college freshmen. Kids these days are watching pornography in jr. high and having intercourse in High School. It's very sad, but it's true. I've recently read a few YA NYT best sellers where the characters where all drinking. My first reaction was WTF since when did they allow drinking in YA? But my second reaction was "well...yeah, they do have to keep up with the times." A topic of discussion for later, perhaps?

  8. Glad you're keeping your site "real", David! ;-)

    OMG, Jen! Porn in junior high?!? I think I'm ill prepared to be a parent to a daughter who will be in junior high in two years.

    Okay, let me go smack myself in the mirror. I think I'm in shock.

  9. What keeps me at a new site? Current links, current updates, if there is a blog, it has to be something that interests me at least half of the time, AND the most important - the owner of the site has to have some humility. I can't stand reading over and over how great of a writer they are - I mean there's a difference between selling ones self and out right prostitution.