Pied Type too

CurvesAheadflowerJust a note to let those interested know I’ve started a second blog, Cancer: Curves Ahead, to use for follow-ups to my post “A is for anxiety, C is for cancer.” I’ve no idea what if anything I’ll write over there, but I’ve spent the better part of the last two days setting it up. It’s the sort of thing I can spend hours playing with, so I did.

I must say it was eye-opening and discouraging to see what newcomers face when trying to start a brand new WordPress blog, something I haven’t done for more than six years. Maybe newcomers have it easier, with no expectations or prior experience. And probably I’m handicapped because I’m used to having all my customization upgrades. Trying to find a free theme that looked acceptable — attractive, understated, etc. — and included most of what I consider to be essential features was terribly frustrating, and navigating all the menus and settings is just crazy now. Options don’t always match available theme features (color options, for example), and although there is a box to include your blog’s tagline, a lot of free themes don’t display taglines. This was particularly annoying since my title (one of several I reserved years ago) would benefit from one. And then there’s the ever-present panel pushing customization upgrades.

On the other hand, maybe I’m just a confused old woman no longer capable of navigating all this hi tech mumbo jumbo …

20 thoughts on “Pied Type too

  1. No, it’s not you. Being away for just a year had me all confused. I knew about the beep-beep-boop from reading this blog, but yes, it is a royal PITA to navigate the dashboard now. And a lot of the themes are less than attractive. They’re geared for mobile users, so there are a lot of san serif fonts that look insanely huge on a desktop view. In fact, the layout I’m using now came with a san serif font, but I upgraded. If I can’t have Vigilance anymore, at least I can have a serif font! Still not sure what I’m doing, but once I found the old wp-admin dashboard, I added it to my bookmarks toolbar so I go right there when I click on it. I’ll follow your new blog, too. 🙂

    1. It’s all a mess, isn’t it? I found most of the free themes seriously lacking in both quality and number and thought it was pretty obvious that premium themes now dominate the showcase. And that’s premium in addition to the upgrades. Guess those free themes just didn’t make much money for them …

    2. By the way, I did see Vigilance among the available themes. I think I was scrolling through most of the showcase and it appeared near the very bottom along with some other golden oldies that I hadn’t thought about in years.

      1. I can see it in a search on the dashboard of my old blog and my work website. But I can’t even get a search box in the dashboard for my current blog and can’t find it. WP is really starting to annoy me.

  2. I’m really, really, really picky when it comes to themes. Over the years I have spent hours looking at themes. I eventually dove into the “Editor” menu and began tinkering with the CSS coding. Now realize, I know nothing about how to code so it was hit and miss for sure. No serious coding however, just things like changing colors or font size or font alignment. Of course the downside is that if a theme you have modified gets upgraded and you upgrade, you lose all your changes. There is a way to avoid that but so far my self-training hasn’t gotten that far. 🙂

    As you know, I just went through starting a new blog myself but since I really liked my old theme I escaped the “find-a-theme” misery. 🙂

    1. Well, it would have been less miserable and a lot more fun if I’d been willing to consider the premium themes, which I wasn’t because I’ve no idea what sort of lifespan I’m looking at for the new blog. But the free options didn’t hold much appeal, mostly because without buying an upgrade, I couldn’t change the few features that bothered me. But it killed a lot of time so I guess I shouldn’t complain.

      And yes, I’m kind of locked into this theme for this blog. I’ve made a ton of changes that either wouldn’t carry over to a new theme at all or would carry over in a disastrous way that would require manual corrections of every post (more than 2,000).

    1. The most frustrating part is that I used to understand it all. I could easily whip around through all the WP menus and settings to do exactly what I wanted. And I guess I kept up with most of the changes because they came incrementally over a period of years. But when I went back to “start from scratch,” everything was unfamiliar, unfriendly, and very unintuitive (even though I’ve been doing this stuff for years).

      Are you listening, WordPress?

      1. I started my blog within the last two months. I was thrilled when I found zero to hero because it guided me through steps at a reasonable pace. Then one day it was gone, and now I am lost. Glad to know I am not alone!

        1. You’ve got a lot of company. Even those of us who’ve been around here for years have lodged bitter complaints about the changes WP keeps making.

  3. I suppose my expectations are different. I started my blog just in January 2015, from scratch, no background in this kind of thing. An adventure!! I’m on my third theme and really like it now. I can see where it must be frustrating with your background and expertise. (Like for me having to take care of a patient without the right equipment.) Whatever you do, it will be sure to look great, and more importantly, your content and insights will be helpful to others. Sign me up!

    1. Aw, thanks. I once compared WP’s constant changes to waking up one morning and discovering someone had changed my QWERTY keyboard to FUBAR. Much like someone having taken some of your equipment and rearranging what was left.

      But I’m so glad you’re having fun. For the most part that’s what it’s been for me. Fun exploring the options and possibilities, creating, experimenting, etc. I spend hours on it just because it’s something I love doing.

  4. Part of my brain (the dimwitted part, obviously) is prodding to work on a second blog, but have stalled worried about just what you’ve described…just so much time and willingness to puzzle through annoyances right now. (But if the summer gets hot and it’s either hibernate or blog….maybe)

    1. Yes, there was a lot of frustration, but I’m so damn picky about details that I’m my own worst enemy. At the same time, it was a marvelously engrossing activity, which was exactly what I needed.

  5. I just “followed” your new blog PT, and look forward to reading what you posted there ASAP. As you know, I’ve been planning to start another one myself, but oh the decisions, the decisions! O_o

    1. I hear you. I thought it would be a piece of cake, but far, far from it. Still, there’s some satisfaction in doing battle with the WP blog gods and finally succeeding.

  6. I’m still using the first theme I used, 2010. I think they have a 2014 with lots more bells and whistles.

    The yearly free ones (2010, 2011, etc.) seem to me the best of the free ones, at least for what I want.

... and that's my two cents