I have done a fair amount to your site today, which hopefully should make your life easier here-on-in?

The ‘Blog’ is now using ‘posts’ to populate it rather than a single expanding page. Should you manage to break it then I have set it so that each post (and page) has it’s ‘revisions’ panel visible so you can turn back time. If only that was true for everything! Sorry, I think I’ve just had a philosophical moment?

Whilst I was about it I’ve updated your WordPress database and any plugins needing attention. I’ve also added one or two plugins which should help you too.

These are:

Admin Management Extended
Enables you to see at a glance Post and Page information when you are logged in and viewing all the Posts or Pages as a list. You can also easily turn on/off a Post or Page’s visibility, change publication date, edit post slug and turn on/off the comments per page/post.

Category Post Widget
You can now see a vertical list of posts associated with the new ‘Land’s End to John O’Groats’ category on the RH side of each Blog page. See my question on FTP info for formatting this at end?

Easy Columns
This one will enable you to create columns in a post/page.
More on how to use it later.

Page Children
This just groups the submenu pages under the parent page so that you don’t see loads of pages in a list. Its working but I wouldn’t worry about this.

WordPress Database Backup
I’ve set this up so that I receive a backup of your WP database via email on a daily basis. I can set this up to go to any email of your choice but I thought that whilst you are on the road, and should anything happen again, it might be handy if I have a full copy of the database if it needs to be restored?

 

Okay, let’s get to the How To sections…

How to create a ‘Post’.
Clicking ‘Posts’ on the LH side menu will display all of the current… eh, posts!
They are shown in date order, latest first. You can change the order by changing the ‘publication date’ – middle blue icon which looks like a calendar on right of the appropriate post when viewed as a list.

  1. Click, ‘Add New’ from the side menu or next to the ‘Posts’ heading.
  2. Type in your heading in the ‘Enter title here’ field. I would suggest keeping the format the same for all daily posts. I have done it so it is:
    ‘Day 2 – Sunday 8th July’
    ‘Day 1 – Saturday 7th July’
  3. Next I’d suggest putting the title of the day’s ride followed by a carriage return. I have formatted this as ‘Heading 3’ in Paragraph dropdown list.
  4. Below this I’ve entered:  ‘Overall distance: xxxxx miles’ followed by a soft return, which is done by holding the ‘shift’ key down then hitting ‘return’ key. Then enter: ‘Total climb: xxxx metres’ followed by a full carriage return. Format these two lines as ‘Heading 6’.
  5. Next you have to make a decision whether you need one or two columns. I’ve only used columns when there are photos but you can use them any time. If it’s just a single column then enter your text below the ‘miles/climb’ info and format it using the ‘paragraph’ setting if you need to?
    Remember, if you are cutting and pasting from Word then use the icon with a ‘W’ in it to bring up a window where you can paste your Word text in. It will remove ‘most’ of the rubbish formatting that Word creates. You may still need to adjust the carriage returns and ‘paragraph’ setting? I would also suggest doing as little formatting in Word as possible if you are using it as the text editing programme as it will need to be stripped out anyway?
  6. Once you’ve done all of your text formatting in the ‘post’ then make sure you select the ‘Land’s End to John O’Groats’ category on the right. This is an easy one to forget.
  7. Next, Unlike Pages, Posts have two information windows. The second one is just below the first and is called ‘Except’. This panel is optional. However, it is good to fill this in with (no more than about 50 words) a brief description on what is in the main post. I would suggest making it short, punchy, funny, interesting where possible as this is a bit like an advert to the main feature. Note: you have little or no formatting in the ‘except’ field area and no pictures allowed either.
    Once you’ve completed your witty pros you can hit ‘Update’ and publish if you like? Clicking the ‘Blog’ menu item should show your latest masterpiece ‘except’ at the top of the list. If it’s not there then you’ve probably forgotten to select the ‘Land’s End…’  Category?
    Clicking the [More] button or the Post’s title will take you to the full story.
  8. TWO COLUMNS
    To create two columns after the ‘miles/climb’ info, first put the cursor at the point where you want the two columns to start and click on the icon that looks a bit like a Roman column (top row, second from the end, just above the text area). This will bring up a popup window showing various column combinations. I would suggest using the one: [1/2] [1/2]. Click it.
    You should now see some scary code. Don’t worry about it, the two bits you are interested in say ‘Half Column’. If you want to see what it looks like then I suggest changing one of the ‘Half columns’ to say something else and hit ‘Update’. Hit ‘View Post’ just below the Post title (should open in a new tab) and take a look at where your two bits of text are. I suggest using the left column for the pictures and the right for the text?
    Next, go back to your post and highlight the dummy text in the appropriate column and either import a picture(s) or paste/write text into the appropriate column. Each column should have some opening and closing code in square brackets before and after the column’s content.  I put a carriage return behind each picture to move them down a bit. They are NOT ranged left.
  9. I have prepared a dummy post called ‘Day 3 ready to use’ which is in the post list but not yet visible so you can see what I’m on about [above]. To make it visible, click on the ‘Posts’ title on the LH side (or All Posts in the dropdown) then ‘Toggle visibility’ icon [x] to the right of the appropriate post. Amend as you like and update to publish.

Blog text…

The writing style of a blog is quite different to anything else. It is usually made up of short, punchy sentences and small paragraphs. I would avoid excessive use of CAPS, !!!, ??, …. or any other exclamations as it makes the text hard to read and ranks less well in Search Engines.

In recreating the posts, I have taken the liberty of removing some of your exclamation marks and corrected one or two typos along the way too. Hope you don’t mind?

Lastly,

The list of blog titles that are shown on the right of each blog page are a links although they don’t look much like it. If you’d like to let me have your FTP login details I could go in and write some code so they look nicer and are more obvious as to their use?

I have changed the permalinks so that the titles now show up in the address bar – better for Search Engines and humans too.

I have set the ‘comments’ option so that none are visible unless you allow them to be. Keep an eye on the ‘comments’ menu item on the left to see if there are any posted?

 

If you run into problems then either text or email me:
077 404 123 87
jim@opake.co.uk

Regards

Jim