April 29, 2014

Website Woes

I recently redesigned my website from scratch.  I used a content management system (CMS) to build it.  For the uninitiated, this type of system allows you to change the data on pages fairly quickly while keeping the style of the website intact.  It’s a far cry from the first website I built using Microsoft Publisher.  The problem with that program is that it would never look the same depending on what computer and browser I was using.  Anything that looked terrific on Internet Explorer, would look terrible on Firefox and vice versa.  So I found myself forever tinkering with my website.  It was a great when my writer’s block would kick in.  I would have a legitimate excuse for not writing because I had to fix my #$@^&* website.

I used to work in a technology unit at my old day job.  I am far from being a technology expert.  But I have a basic understanding of how technology works and I’m willing to teach myself just about anything.  So with enough time and patience, I rebuilt my website.  I used a CMS called Joomla.  It’s a pretty popular system.  But Joomla was entirely different from anything I used before.   I would have to start at the beginning to learn it.  So with the help of the internet and armed with a “Dummies” book, I went to work. 

First problem I ran into:  Joomla was upgrading versions and the new version wouldn’t work with my current internet hosting.  I contacted customer service and they sold me on trying a new hosting platform they were rolling out which would support the new version of Joomla.  So I backed up my website, or so I thought, and had them convert me to this new hosting platform. 

So I find out that I didn’t quite back up my website correctly (“D’oh”-with apologies to Homer Simpson).  Also, when I switched platforms it deleted my old account.  My website and everything else stored there was gone (“Double D’oh”). 

If I had backed up my website correctly, I could have just imported it into Joomla and it would have converted it automatically (“Triple D’oh).  But anyhow, now I finally have a nice, shiny new website, with plenty of bells and whistles.  If you would like to see the results, please visit www.kevinmcnamee.com and let me know how it looks to you.

Unfortunately, now I don’t have any more excuses for not writing.  Back to work.

April 14, 2014

Going Global

I received some great news from my publisher that all of my books are going to be available for sale in China and other Asian markets.  Guardian Angel Publishing has finished negotiating with an agent to distribute English language books.  This is coupled with a mandate in China that all school children should learn English.  So I’m really excited that my books will be open to such a huge market.  Also in the works is distribution to India and other emerging markets where my books are not available.  I’ll keep you posted on any further developments.  But I couldn’t wait to spread the word.  How cool is that?