As some of you know, before coming to www.sagaofsoul.com, this story was being published on FictionPress under the somewhat less distinctive moniker "Soul". When I moved it to its current location, a friend did most of the legwork on designing the website, and I, learning HTML and CSS at the time, made what improvements I could.
I've put some additional touches over the years. But, I need to admit this much to myself: I am no expert. Not at the artistic side of web design, and not at the technical side of it. So, as I look into ways of improving the website, I'm looking for advice. Do you have suggestions on how to make the site nicer? Do you have tips of how to handle the technical side of things? This is the place to discuss it!
Some issues I'm already aware of:
- Several readers have complained that the convention of placing translated non-English text in "< >" symbols is hard on the eye. I'm experimenting with using a smaller font size for these symbols - the results are visible in the current version of chapter 1. Better? Worse? (Annoyingly, though, the best way I've found so far of effecting this change is by doing a "find and replace" across the HTML files. Does anyone know if it's possible to define this as a global style function?)
- I'm trying to work out the best way to space lines. Adding indentations to the first line of every paragraph obviously improves readability, but should there be additional space between paragraphs? Should the line height be 1.0, 1.5, 1.8?
- So, apparently, there's this option called "justify", which is better than "left align". Kinda wish I'd known that a few years ago.
- When a certain element appears on every single page of the website (such as the red column on the left with its "main", "story", "extras" and other links), I simply have it defined in every single HTML file. Meaning that, if I wish to change it, I need to do so manually for every page. Are there more efficient ways to handle this?
- Speaking of more efficient ways of handling things, this website does have a CSS page...which doesn't currently see any use, as styles get defined within the HTML. Which brings us to...
- OK, this is one I've been struggling with for a while. See...When I write Saga of Soul, I do so on Google Drive. All fine and well, but then comes the issue of converting the text into HTML for the website. Problem is, every single method I've used for the conversion has given me problematic results, ranging from bloated code to lost formatting to just overriding any attempts to define a global style. Any advice on how to handle this would be appreciated.