Dear Rachel,

Here you will find some documentation about your specific site's structured use of its template. Squarespace has vast tutorials in its help section, but this information is specific to your site.

First, a quick style sheet:


This is Heading 2


This is text set with "quote" as its style

This is body text (aka Normal)

This is a quote made with a quote block
— Sarina Bowen


Your site is built on a template called Avenue.

Your home page is a PAGE which contains a gallery block. That gallery block references a GALLERY called Cover Art, located in your "not linked" pages. To rearrange the book covers' order, you rearrange the gallery itself. Each gallery image is linked to a book page (to the same pages visible under the "books" section of your main nav bar. Note: the images in your gallery are between 600 and 650 pixels tall. I think the resolution is good at that size, and they load super fast. 

Logging In

To log in to your site, put in the address with /config at the end. You’ll be asked for your credentials. (Email address and password.)

Even after you get your domain name set up to point to your SS site, when you’re working on your site, you’ll see a different URL on the top of your browser. (Mine looks like https://sarina-bowen.squarespace.cominstead of  Don’t worry! This is normal. When you’re building links to your pages use the pretty URL address you want readers to see. It will work, I promise.

Note: I am currently an “admin” for your site. If you look at SETTINGS=>PERMISSIONS you’ll see me in there. It is up to you whether to leave me in there or remove me.  After we’re done with the design process, I’d never fiddle without your permission.

The Back End

When you’re logged into SS you’ll see a menu on the left side. OR an arrow in the upper left corner that, when clicked, gives you that left-hand menu.

The menu choice you’ll use most is the top one: PAGES. That’s where all your site’s content is edited. When you need to add or change something, 90% of the time it will be in the PAGES part of your site.

When you click on PAGES you’ll see a map of your site. At the top you’ll see MAIN NAVIGATION and below it all your main menu choices, in the order they appear on your nav bar. If you were to grab any of these and move them, you’d see (after refreshing the page) that the order of the nav bar has changed to reflect your reordering.

That + beside the words MAIN NAVIGATION? If you click it, that creates a new page. The + to make a new page also appears below the items in any folders you have. But you may still drag something into or out of a folder at any time.

Page Configuration

Hover the mouse over one of your pages. You will see a GEAR appear.  When you click on that gear, a menu appears on the right-hand side of the screen. There is some important stuff on this menu. There are three places where the name of the page appears: Navigation title, page title and a little further down URL slug. I find it helpful to keep these things the same. (Except I take out the spaces and hyphens in the URL slug.) Your pages should be named in a way that makes it easy for you to remember them. So if you’re writing an email you can just tap out the address of the page you want to include without having to look at your website to see what the page is called.

And you will notice a check box for ENABLED. If you uncheck it, the page becomes invisible to the outside world, but not to you. It’s name will be grayed out in the menu so you’ll remember it’s not enabled.

Also on this menu is something called a thumbnail image. The way we're using the AVENUE template, this thumbnail isn't used for much. But it may appear when you link to Facebook, etc. And if you're ever getting weird images when you link to sites like FB, check the thumbnail. That could be the reason.

Also in this menu is the ability to add a password for the page. We’re not using that ability for anything right now, but if you ever wanted to create private content, that’s one way to accomplish it.

Most SS menus also have an ADVANCED choice. See it on the top right? If you find yourself needing to inject code on a webpage, it goes there. When would you do this? Facebook tracking pixels and conversion pixels spring to mind. Or third-party apps.

Hidden Pages

Scroll down below this familiar map and find another list of pages under the heading NOT LINKED. These are also pages in your site, but they do not appear in the main nav. They are hidden!

So what’s down here? A few things:

1.  Stuff that’s hidden only because it acts as a reservoir of material that we’re pulling onto other pages. IE a gallery of cover images and a product page where we’ve stored your items for sale. You can see that the gallery is denoted by a picture icon and the products with a $.

2. Stuff that's hidden because it's only meant for certain visitors--like reviewers who get ARCs, or people who are responding to a freebie offer.

3. Pages that we’re building or not ready to put into the main nav. We can drag those suckers out of the NOT LINKED menu into the main nav whenever we’re ready.

Editing Content

To edit content, navigate to the page you’d like to update. When you bring the mouse over the content, you’ll see PAGE CONTENT: EDIT | SETTINGS. Choose edit. (Settings would take us to our configuration menu, the same one we activated with the gear in our pages menu.)

Now all the content that’s part of the main portion of the page is editable. NOTE: Your site also has a "header" portion and a "footer" portion that are customizable on a page-by-page basis. There are separate EDIT markers for those which appear if you hover over them.

1.       You can highlight text and then edit it. You can format text that’s already there.  Note: Squarespace gives us a normal text setting and a couple of heading selections. H1 is for big title text and H2 & H3 are usually medium-sized. Changing the color of these is a design function.

2.       Hover your mouse around the edges of objects and text and you’ll see insertion points appear! It takes a little time to get used to these and their functions. If you click to insert something you’ll get a vast menu of choices. SS is built to accommodate restaurants, artists, musicians, etc. So some functions like OpenTable won’t be useful. The choices you’re most likely to make are: text, images, buttons, spacers and lines. And products! The products you’ve already built are available to you for insertion on a page.

3.       Moving stuff around on a SS page takes some practice. Grab an object and move it around, watching all the places that SS volunteers to put it. The page will divide itself vertically into columns, sometimes with unexpected results. You can always hit CANCEL and then DISCARD to undo the mess you’ve made!

Squarespace offers you a tutorial on adding stuff (called blocks) here. If you watch any Squarespace tutorials at all, watch this one.

You can also add a brand new page and then edit it. Tutorial here.

Adding a New Book, Step by Step

Okay, so you wrote a new book.

1.       Make a new page by clicking the + on the PAGES menu

2.       Give the page a name, which should be the title of your book

3.       Drag the page into the appropriate spot (in the books folder in your case)

4.       Click the gear to see how that page is configured. Edit the URL slug until you’re happy with the address of the page. Save those changes.

5.       Edit your page. Paste in some text. Upload the cover art as an “image” block. You should never upload any pics which are wider than 1500 pixels. They’ll load too slowly. Move that cover art into position by dragging it into a corner. Afterward, adjust the horizontal that divides the picture from the text so that art is the size (width) you want.

6.       Add some buttons. Before your book is up for pre-order, you could add a button to the book’s Goodreads page. Come back later and change these so that they’re buy buttons.

7.       Then, add the cover art again to any galleries (like your cover art gallery!) which are appropriate for that book. Link the cover from the gallery to the book’s page under “options.”

8.       If you’re up and running with e-commerce, you’ll have to build the new book as a product. (See below.)

Setting up Your Store

I waited a long time to try the ecommerce functions on my own site, and then afterward I couldn’t figure out why I’d hesitated.

All the COMMERCE functions are in their own menu. SS steps you through the process of Getting Started right inside that menu. The main thing is setting up your account at Stripe. That took me less than ten minutes. Then SS uses your Stripe ID number and does everything for you. I never logged into Stripe’s website after that first time.

You’ll also have to make some decisions about shipping. Check out those flat rate boxes at your post office. I use USPS media rate, but it’s such a PITA that I’ll probably switch to Priority when I run through my current stash of shipping supplies.

Adding new products

A “product” is a special type of SS item. Please find your products page in the NOT LINKED menu. It’s icon is: $. See that? All your current titles are there. When the next book comes along, you can add one. OR you can add one from the INVENTORY menu in COMMERCE.

I’ve given your books a weight of 1 pound and a sticker price of $15. But you’ll see how easy it is to change these settings. Once you get in there and poke around you’ll see how easy it is to use. Easier than listing an item on Ebay!

Thank you!

Please don’t hesitate to let me know what I’ve forgotten to tell you. I want you to feel good about using your site, experimenting with changes and occasionally making mistakes. If anything is driving you nuts, I’d love to know.

Addendum: Sumome

On your /freebie page you're running an app called "Welcome Mat" by Sumome.

Here's how you log in to sumome. Go to your website and click somewhere on the white background. Then type the word sumome and press the up arrow on your keyboard.

A blue menu thingey will appear in the upper right-hand corner of the screen. Clicking on the crown will bring up a sumome menu popup. Clicking on Welcome Mat will bring you the menus for the app itself. There are analytics, changeable design and behavior elements. Welcome mat was built to make any page of your website into a squeeze page, and we're using it just on /freebie. 

Your login is or

Your password is rblaufeld