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I Made a Website

And you should too!

By Suze KayPublished 19 days ago Updated 19 days ago 4 min read
Top Story - September 2023
My new landing page at www.suzekay.com :')

When this piece is posted, it will be my fiftieth story on Vocal. It's been such a glorious ride. Over the past two years (but really, six months in earnest), Vocal has helped me rediscover and hone my creative edge.

I've always wanted to be a writer. I've always been a writer. But I buried pieces of myself in the aftermath of trauma and embarrassment, and it was a hard path back to the written word. If you want to read more about what that journey looked like, check out my story "The Artist's Way."

Many brilliant contributors on this platform (hem hem, Cendrine Marraouat, Stephen Kramer Avitabile, and Naomi Gold) have been consistently reminding everyone that no website is forever, and as living writers, it is our duty to steward our own works. They all have posted various encouragements on their own profiles and in their comments.

Finally, I heard them. I think we can acknowledge it's been a weird few weeks on Vocal. There's an influx of plagiarists and spammers. ChatGPT schlock keeps being given Top Story. Drama coupled with confusing moderation tactics has led to at least one super-talented writer departing from our community. It made me question what I would do in the same situation, or in a worse one, where the site goes down completely. Would I abandon my work here? Would I have to hastily save what I could?

By the way, check out Matthew Fromm's awesome poem hitting out at plagiarists:

To be clear, none of this makes me want to give up on Vocal. I think this is just part of the site's growing pains. Medium just changed its algorithm to prevent the type of behavior many of us are speaking out against, which seems to be pushing the spammers and AI filth in our direction. It will be a bumpy ride, but I trust that The Powers That Be at Vocal will right the ship given time and patience.

Still, in the aftermath of all this, I had a moment this week where I thought about my profile. As a writer, not just a Vocal contributor. Let me walk you through the positive things that pushed me to making my own website.

I use a pen name. It's not because I want to hide my identity. I still use my real pictures, and I contribute to the Vocal + Assist Facebook group using my given name. But it's a little clunky, and I'm getting married in a few weeks, after which it will change. I want to keep things simple. I want to keep my publishing name stable.

If you want to join the cool V+ crew over on Facebook, please do. It's a wonderfully supportive group with a lot to offer people looking to boost their profile on Vocal!

I submit my work to places that aren't Vocal. Some gets published, a lot doesn't. What doesn't get picked up by others I park here, so people can still read it and (hopefully) enjoy it. But that means I should have a searchable profile to prove to potential publishers that I exist and have a body of work. If that's all just floating through the internet under a relatively short, sweet, and non-unique pen name, then there's a good chance I'll get lost in the shuffle.

The things that get published, by the way, are good. Really good. But they're also under a publisher's lock and key, and I want to give people who know my words from one avenue of my life a map so they can find the buried treasure.

I want to build my brand. I believe in my talent. I've been recognized for my talent before. I have a unique voice and a lot to offer the world through my words. Just because I'm a work in progress doesn't mean I need to wait until the process is done before I launch myself. Honestly, if I were taking that slow path, I'd probably be dead before I was ready!

Vocal has been awesome because it's allowed me to connect with other writers just like me. I hope that happens on my website, too. Vocal has so many talented people with cool stuff to say, who read my work and connect with me over it, who let me read theirs and connect with them too. I'm really excited to see what happens in the comment section of my own personal blog.

I want to customize my work's appearance. I'm using Wix, which allows me to add some more personality and functionality to my profile and my writing. It has a wide variety of typefaces, sizing options, and other tools to help me do so. I get to tinker and craft on the visuals of my craft. And also, it's pretty easy!

And finally, I want to protect my work. Everything on my page is clearly copyrighted. Doesn't mean it's safe from the scavengers, but it gives me more leverage to dispatch them.

So, I did it! Yesterday, I made my website. You can find it here:

I hope I'll see some of you over there. There's some cool stuff there that you haven't seen on Vocal yet, and you can find it under my Publications tab :)

But even more, I hope I'll see many of you starting your own writer's websites, too. You have so much to offer the world through your words.

I showed you mine. Show me yours in the comments!


About the Creator

Suze Kay

Pastry chef by day, insomniac writer by night.

Catch me here for spooky stories, crushable poems, and overall weird thoughts.

Or, let me catch you on my website!

Reader insights


Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

Top insight

  1. On-point and relevant

    Writing reflected the title & theme

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Comments (28)

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  • L.C. Schäfer10 days ago

    This is very good advice. I do have all my stuff backed up 😁

  • Dana Hambleton12 days ago

    I’ve been trying to create my website for ages but just never seem to get it quite right so I restart over and over again. That’s also I very beautiful website, I’m jealous!

  • Novel Allen12 days ago

    Great story. Congrats on your wins.

  • Congratulations 🎉 Leaderboard🎉

  • Ahna Lewis15 days ago

    Enjoyed reading your thoughts here! Glad to see you advancing your writing career. Your website looks awesome!

  • I have ben told to create a website by many people. This may be the sign to go ahead and do it. Your site really is so sleek and lovely. If I make one I will post it here! Thank you, and congrats on top story!

  • Great Article and Congratulations on your Top Story🎉😉💯👌

  • Poppy the Poet18 days ago

    Congratulations on top story Suze!

  • Amanda Starks18 days ago

    This is awesome! I'm so glad you made the jump! Having a dedicated website for you and your brand is an important step. I've been on WIX for years and have loved it. I am excited to see another writer here using the platform!! Really loved the clean and professional look of your site!! c: I will be subscribing to your e-mail for sure. Here is my website as it is currently: https://www.amandastarks.com/ As you can see, it is very different. xD Congrats on another top story, as well!!

  • Donna Renee18 days ago

    Ooof yeah… I need to do one, just procrastinating 🫠🫠🫠. Thanks for the inspiration!! 🥰

  • Great top story and great website! So cool to read such a positive story! Congratulations! 🤍

  • Lamar Wiggins18 days ago

    This is awesome, Suze and so inspiring. Thank you for sharing. And of course, I will look into it. Congrats on a well-deserved Top Story! Who built the site for you? Or did you do it all yourself. I know there are sites that provide templates and recommendations to get you started but have never looked into which ones make the most sense for making a debut site.

  • Trip L.18 days ago

    Gave me a lot to consider, thank you!

  • Yeah! This is awesome! And how was I not subscribed already? Really thought I already had... But so glad you made a web site, yeah, I felt the same as you do when I did mine. I think you detailed all the points magnificently here. All great reasons for people to do the same if they believe in themselves as you do... and as you SHOULD. Oh also, thank you for the shout out! Happy to be of any service to anyone here, even if just a little. And congrats on all your publications, you are right, when you get stuff published, it is GOOD. Because you have to beat out so many others. So, keep believing in yourself. Even as a work in progress. You detailed that perfectly. I think your words can definitely be an inspiration to many... makes me want to keep getting out there and writing!

  • Dana Crandell18 days ago

    Congratulations on top Story!

  • Mesh Toraskar18 days ago

    Okay that's it - this is my calling. My weekend is not looking so empty anymore, thanks to you! It was the line - "as living writers, it is our duty to steward our own works" that made me sit and think and come to this decision. Congratulations Suze on such a lovely website, can't wait to see what's next on the horizon. Thank you for writing this. :)

  • This is such an awesomeeee idea! Ah, Medium changed it algorithm and that's why Vocal is getting more of these pests. Also, congratulations on your 50th piece!

  • Definitely food for thought! Thank you! Ps. You’ve built a beautiful website. Congratulations 🌻

  • A. Lenae19 days ago

    Congratulations! I love what you touch on here and the inspiring way you're claiming your voice and its importance in this creative space/the world. The AI content and growing plagiarism are disconcerting, but when we close up shop and keep our art to ourselves, we're giving up - so thank you for not doing that and for spreading the motivating message!

  • Poppy the Poet19 days ago

    Oo I’m so excited for this!! I really enjoyed reading this. Congratulations on the website and also congratulations on getting married soon!! I’ll need to strongly consider making my own website now. Thank you!

  • Judey Kalchik 19 days ago

    Congratulations! I hope more people do this!

  • Mackenzie Davis19 days ago

    I’ve been wanting to do this, so I'm glad you wrote about yours, as it has motivated me. This weekend—it’s happening. 😅 Probably. Anyway, so much you said here needs to be read by everyone!! The bits about AI content, spammers, drama…it’s worth telling and worth reading, and your reasons for creating your beautiful website are so justified, I want others to be convinced and do the same. So I nominated this for TS. Tell me more about how you created your site! Especially the domain stuff…I’ve used Wix before, but was thinking Squarespace might be better. And my God, 1day, really? Gosh, I’d have to spend a week, a least. So proud of you and so happy!

  • Matthew Fromm19 days ago

    ayy thank you for the shoutout! I appreciate it. I really need to do this....

  • Suze, I'm SO proud of you! You did a great job with the website!

  • Ariel Joseph19 days ago

    Did you build the whole site in just a day?! It looks really amazing!

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