Looking for a responsive theme for an author's website


(Bill Cokas) #1

Can anyone recommend a responsive theme that would be suitable for a novelist? I’ve got three books right now, but plan on writing more and featuring them on the site of course. I won’t be selling things directly on the site, but it will serve as a portal for other sites (Amazon, social media). It would need to be able to accommodate the artwork of the book covers, no matter how many there end up being. Here’s a non-Rapidweaver example: http://jfpenn.com. Thanks!


(Robert Ziebol 🖖🏼) #2

This can easily be done with Foundation by Joe Workman, with the free add-on stacks of Scroll Up and Pin by Big White Duck.


(Michael Kane) #3

Your page is already responsive and looks good. Why do you want to change it? But if you insist, here’s a page made with RW: andaluspublishing.com


#4

I have written books and sell online from my own sites. Your current site is responsive and looks pretty good, but moving away from Wordpress to something like Foundation would give you total freedom to design a site exactly the way you want it.

The only caveat is that like all things there will be an inevitable learning curve but I often make lots of small changes to try and boost sales, so learning this skill has become a valuable asset that can be used with all future projects and I no longer need to rely on others.

I would be hesitant to recommend an existing template theme because they sometimes have bugs or limitations that you only discover after hours or days of work and that can be annoying but with Foundation you start with a blank canvass and create the site you want. Your site will be unique and not based on a template used by many others.


(Bill Cokas) #5

Thanks, everyone–I didn’t get the notifications of your replies, so sorry for the delay. Actually the example in the question is NOT my site, but an example of what I’m looking for.


(Bill Cokas) #6

What theme was used to make this?


(Robert Ziebol 🖖🏼) #7

That is the Strata theme by Nick Cates
https://nickcatesdesign.com/preview/rapidweaver/strata/


(Michael Kane) #8

The theme is Strata by Nick Cates Design. His Light Page stack is what is used for the book covers. Shopify is used to handle purchases. The Simple Divider stack is used for spacing. I used the Text Columns (not sure where this is from) responsive stack within the theme. I chose Strata because it was recommended by NCD as a theme that worked well with their Light Page stack. I copied the theme so I would get access to its internals though they recommended against this; but I needed to use my own graphics. I would have been happy to use stock bookstore photography but I didn’t find any special-purpose bookstore template.

I really couldn’t find a “bookstore” Rapidweaver theme. This is unfortunate, since there are Wordpress examples out there. While someone wrote in this thread that the great thing about Foundation is that you can “do what you want” the point of Rapidweaver as I understand it isn’t to enable you to do what you want. It’s to enable rapid web development. I can do what I want with Notepad, if I don’t mind re-inventing the wheel. I don’t want to reinvent the wheel, and I’m guessing that many former iWeb and current Rapidweaver users don’t want to reinvent the wheel either.

So, I’ve built a page that works. But I’m sure that many, many users could do a better job. There should be a way to share these efforts with the approval of the developers, or let the developers enhance specific-use templates. The Rapidweaver community simply needs more templates. Or perhaps a way to share projects while protecting a developer’s IP.

Finally, Foundation isn’t a theme at all. It’s a framework, like Bootstrap, that makes responsive sites possible. Why isn’t there a Pinterest-like template bookstore or craft website front-end for Rapidweaver? I have no idea. There certainly are for other environments.

Here’s another well-done bookstore site but I have no idea what they used to build it: http://zombie-books.com


(Bill Cokas) #9

Thanks for your thoughts. I am no web developer, so I was mighty proud to have built my own RW site back in 2012 (http://www.margawriterville.com). I have long since forgotten everything I’ve learned and frankly, I still don’t know what a “stack” is. I sure don’t want to reinvent the wheel, and a framework sounds like it might be too open-ended and intimidating for me. I might end up making do with some other theme and just bending it as much as I can to my will. Thank you for all your feedback!


(Robert Ziebol 🖖🏼) #10

This is an incorrect statement. Joe Workman made Foundation For RapidWeaver. It is a theme. Is it a theme like most themes out there? No. But it is a theme. Foundation is also a Framework and that is what Joe used to make Foundation for RapidWeaver. Foundation for RapidWeaver is made with the Foundation 5 framework. Joe will be releasing Foundation 6 for RapidWeaver sometime this summer.

Do you have to re-invent the wheel to use Foundation? No. Joe has many tutorials (some that even Realmac has put on their tutorial site as well) on how to use Foundation. It is different from other themes that it does not give you a basic style of your site, it lets you use your creative juices to make the site look the way you want to.

Need some inspiration, you can check out the Realmac Gallery, they have lots of examples of how the Foundation theme has been used, a great way to get inspiration.

Again, check out the Realmac Community Gallery, as there are many examples with many different themes used.


(Jason Bostick) #11

It’s tough to provide a suggestion because it doesn’t sound like there’s all that unique of functionality that you need - there’s almost TOO many options to suggest to you.

I can’t vouch for the following personally, but I’ve noted them as ones that were appealing:
Iris by Nick Cates looks pretty flexible and has a focus on ‘gallery’ and ‘portfolio’ kind of sites, so that might be suitable for showcasing your titles.

One of Michael David’s themes - maybe Codex, if you think it would mostly be a one-page scrolling site - are nice.

I think Majestic by Elixir is really nice, but not sure it fits your project specifically.

As Zeebe says, you might want to browse through the Rapidweaver Community gallery and see what theme examples jump out.

You might want to pay attention to other layout features (i.e. one-page scrolling vs multi page; big ‘hero headers’ vs smaller, subtle ones; etc) because it doesnt sound to me like you have anything specific you need in terms of functionality from your theme. Just my $0.02


(Michael Kane) #12

@jabostick: OP wanted a bookstore/author page that highlights multiple book covers. There aren’t any off the shelf Rapidweaver themes for this. They can be created, of course, but it’s odd that there aren’t any existing templates. If you look at Themeforest, you’ll find several off the shelf non-Rapidweaver examples. Too many options? There isn’t even one.
@zeebe: A framework container that presents a blank slate with no design elements is not a theme. That’s not to say it’s not useful or that it’s not the result of hard work; but it’s no more a theme than a blank canvas is a painting.


(Jason Bostick) #13

You can put a 3-column stack with an image and text in any theme, was my thinking. You’re right, there’s no author / bookstore themes as far as I know.


(Robert Ziebol 🖖🏼) #14

Still have to disagree, but will stop at that.


(Andrew Tavernor) #15

To be fair here, Foundation is a lot more than just the blank canvas on which you produce your design.

The theme part of it does a hell of a lot behind the scenes in addition to the Foundation framework CSS and JS. There are built in components that optimise CSS loading speeds, provide a page loader functionality, provide in-view animation triggers etc etc. These are all things that differentiate a RW theme from merely a blank canvas.


(Michael Kane) #16

Framework, most certainly. Theme? No.


(Michael Kane) #17

Theme forest has at least seven bookstore themes or templates. Here’s one of them:

Of course, this is not a Rapidweaver product. Or is it??? Could you import a theme into RW? Then you’d be set.


(Keith Flanagan ) #18

Just got done doing a book site for a client. http://lizfernandezdvm.com. Used Freestack Responsive for the site. If I was to start all over again though I would probably use Foundation as it has a little more flexibility. If you would like any pointers please let me know.


(Andrew Tavernor) #19

Lets not play with semantics here. In the context of RapidWeaver we are talking about the Foundation Theme from @joeworkman which is most certainly a RapidWeaver theme and is most certainly Foundation framework based.


(Michael Kane) #20

Bootstrap, Foundation and others are frameworks. If you’re going to use them to support design elements to create a theme, fine. Without design elements, at best you have a container for the framework.