Writing Articles in WordPress

Back-End Menus Appear In Black

After logging in at PHQ, the screen will present like the picture to the right.

The black band on the left-hand side is known as the vertical Administration Menu.  There is also a context-specific menu across the upper horizontal black band.  Trail Sweep is set to be automated in content presentation, so the most important thing for all of us to do is to select POSTS to edit existing content and/or click the ADD NEW button to start a new POST submission.

Setup your SCREEN OPTIONS by pulling down the tab in the upper right corner.  Also known as screen elements, the picture below shows the important checks related to regularly used objects. Check the following Screen Elements, and those unimportant ones will no longer be visible:

      • Divi Page Settings
      • Categories
      • Tags
      • Featured Image
      • Excerpt
      • Author
      • Enable Full Height Editor


The WordPress editor window’s toolbar only shows the top row.  Get used to locating the TOOLBAR TOGGLE ICON    and clicking it to reveal additional rows of formatting functions.  For those who prefer keyboard hotkeys, click Shift+Contol+Z.


Checklist for Publishing an Article

Article Title and the Editor window are the most intuitive two required places to type content.  The rest of the objects needed for a post to display on the Trail Sweep website require decisions.  Use this checklist to add info to each requirement:

1)  DIVI Page Settings need to be changed to show a page layout of NO SIDEBAR. I may be able to default this with some coding.

2)  CATEGORIES determine where on the automated website news will be displayed.  Check all categories that apply.  A minimum of one is required.  We suggest that adding new categories be an editorial board function requiring a meeting and a discussion.  A category must be coded to work to display articles.  Articles checked to a non-functioning category will never be seen by people.  We will add new categories prudently. For example, we may want to add one known as Division Director’s Message.

3)  Author is self-explanatory.  The person logged in will be the default author.  However, we might be ghostwriting an article from an over-the-transom submission.  We will add Ghost Users so that the persons we write for get the proper byline.

4)  Tags are very important for editors to add to published articles after reviewing the author’s submissions.  The better we tag, the easier it will be for members to search for old archived news.  Please take some time to add tags.

5)  Featured Image is a very cool concept in WordPress.  I suggest that we use it and encourage submitters to provide a minimum of one picture.

6) Excerpts will become important to the type of news tease that we are planning on using for Trail Sweep and MailChimp.  There is an HTML Copy/Paste technique that creates the best excerpts.  Trail Sweep editor personnel will be creating the EXCERPTS for our authors.  We will work on a procedure and a standard for good-looking excerpts.

7)  Publish is the last box that needs to be addressed.  However, there is a SAVE DRAFT button that we want to encourage all authors to click regularly.  When the article is, click the SUBMIT FOR REVIEW button.  The Editorial level staff members will ultimately decide when an article is ready for publication, Trail Sweep has a publication procedure that guides the process.

Click PUBLISH, and the article is displayed in all the category locations for members to read…

8)  Add Media (optional) is an important thing to use when telling a story.  Pictures should be interspersed throughout an article.  Please encourage authors to bring photos to their work.  Click the ADD MEDIA button, and WordPress will guide you through the process.  The Editorial Staff needs to create a standard that will create consistency in how we post/display pictures.