Rachel was getting ready to launch her book series, but needed a website to serve as an information hub. She had tried making one herself, but eventually it just didn’t support everything she wanted the site to do – especially ecommerce. We started collaborating to build her the site she needed to support her launch!
A New Face of Cyberpunk
The branding element of this project has been my absolute favorite to date. In the past, cyberpunk has been dominated by black backgrounds, neon green text, and typewriter fonts. As a new writer stepping into the genre, Rachel wanted to make an impact not just with her story but also with her look. We kept some of the mainstays of the genre – binary, neon, and some old-school serif fonts – but then completely refreshed the aesthetic with white backgrounds, san-serif typefaces, and lots of open space. The style leans slightly feminine and many female readers have already mentioned the aesthetic helping them feel the genre is more accessible. Win!
Simple Design – Complex Functions
Rachel needed this site to be able to do a lot: sell on multiple platforms, include a chapter-by-chapter reading experience for the first book, host a thought-center for the genre, accept donations, capture emails for a newsletter, and more. However, with that much going on it would be easy for readers to get lost or feel overwhelmed. With the designs of the site, I utilized some UX (user experience) best practices to keep the site feeling simple, but enabling her to do everything she wanted.
In her book, the protagonist appears in the matrix as a cat-themed avatar. So I hid little cat easter eggs all over the site for Rachel (and the readers) to find. From the loading screens to hover icons on buttons – you never know when a kitty just might appear. Even though this was just for fun, it has become the most commented on feature of the site from users! Who knew.
Site Launch & Results
We launched the site in February of 2018 and right off the bat sales and donations started coming in like crazy. In April, she used her blog to launch the State of Cyberpunk, and the articles are going viral on twitter within the cyberpunk and RPG communities. As she continues to write more books, the site will easily expand to showcase them and help her keep growing her career as a writer.
[testimony coming]Rachel Beck
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