Being a cheapskate at heart, I've spent the past few weeks designing and working on my own website http://www.joycetremel.com. I don't know any html, and only know enough about computers to be dangerous, but thanks to my son, Josh, and Yahoo's sitebuilder, it was all relatively painless. It doesn't look too bad to me, even though I can't get the red at the top to go all the way across the page. I'm leaving it alone.
I was at the point of wondering why I was bothering with a website at all, when I noticed an article in the new Writer's Digest magazine on the necessity of writers having a site. The article stresses that a web presence is critical, even before having an agent or a book contract. The fact that a writer has a website shows an agent or editor that she is serious about her writing career. Agents and editors routinely Google potential clients, and not just to make sure they're not nutcases or serial killers. In addition to being able to write a good story, they want their clients to have a way to market themselves and their book. A website is an ideal way to do this.
In spite of what Writer's Digest says, I'm not counting on hearing from any agents who just happen to stumble upon my website. I'm still planning on finding an agent the old-fashioned way: through good writing, hard work and lots of perseverance!
I guess that means I'd better get back to writing...