How should writers display their work?

Designers have visuals-galore to use in their website “work” or “portfolio” section.

Writers usually don’t.

They have words.

So when it comes to designing websites for writers, the portfolio section can pose a unique challenge.

This is one of the topics that came up at a workshop I gave this summer for the Atlanta Writers Club, Get Your Website Done—For Writers! (Download the slides here.)

So, how should writers display their work on their websites? Just because writers don’t create visuals, doesn’t mean there aren’t great ways to display their work. We just have to get creative about it!

Here are examples of how I’ve helped writers display their work, and how you can do it too:

ConnectWithCopy.com

Deidre writes web copy, so since her actual words end up on websites, it means a visual is available! For Deidre, we used screen shots of the websites she has written copy for. So if you’re a writer and your words end up someplace tangible, like a website, brochure, postcard or billboard—use an image of it. The image doesn’t have to be huge. Even a small one does the job.

BrynMooth.com

We recently freshened up Bryn’s site, which included a portfolio upgrade! Now each project has a really nice image associated with it. Bryn is a food writer, so she has all these beautiful shots of food from the client or location she has written for. If Bryn wants to show something she doesn’t have an image for, she provides her own image by taking a photograph of something relevant.

KarinBeuerlein.com

Karin is a writer and content strategist. On her work page, which she calls “Track Record & Samples,” Karin has four success stories. Each one has a headline, a blurb, a link and a quote. We used icons, color and white space to visually separate the text and show each sample’s significance. You don’t need images to show off your work!

And while we’re at it, here’s another tip for writers:

Yes, you think you should be able to write your copy yourself. But you don’t have to. It’s okay to get help from someone who can see you more clearly. (After all, I’m a WordPress designer and I hire other WordPress designers to help me!)

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