Playing with the New WordPress Block Editor

WordPress is planning on getting rid of their classic editor box, the one I used from the first time I posted a blog. It was easy for a neophyte-blogger me to learn because it was so much like an email editor box, with everything right there that I would need.

I’ve been hesitant about using the new block editor, which is what they call the new blog editor, because it’s based on various blocks or boxes, for example, a box for images, one for text, one that combines both, one that uses a collage format for images, an embedded calendar, and all sorts of other “blocks” I will probably never use. The new format isn’t as intuitive as the old way, so I thought for the first few days of blogging with the new editor, all I’d be able to post is a few words with bizarre formatting, especially since, like most new applications and programs, the directions leave a lot to be desired. To be honest, even the original editor didn’t explain things very well, so I had developed my own tutorial to teach people how to blog.

For the past couple of days, I’ve been playing around with the new format, trying to figure out how to do things so I can keep my current and future blogs more or less in line with my previous posts. There’s virtually no help from any site that claims to explain how to do things (mostly they just say that the block editor is easy to use, all you have to do is pick the block you want to use), but that didn’t work for my basic needs.

But yay! I figured it out, as you can see from my past few posts. Today, I even learned how to use a couple of the blocks, such as this tiled image gallery:

And this block for recent posts:

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I would have preferred smaller images, but the gallery is dependent on the width of the blog itself, and apparently, I have a wider blog than most. (For now. I dread the day when they retire this theme, which they do occasionally.)

As fun as all this learning was, the new way seems too distracting for a simple blog post.

Eventually, I’m sure, I’ll find this new blog experience as satisfying as the old one, but for now, it feels clunky. Even worse, it feels as if my words don’t count — that the look of the thing is more important than what is said. But that seems to be the way of the world.

Still, it’s something new for me to play with, so that has to count for something!

***

Pat Bertram is the author of Grief: The Inside Story – A Guide to Surviving the Loss of a Loved One. “Grief: The Inside Story is perfect and that is not hyperbole! It is exactly what folk who are grieving need to read.” –Leesa Healy, RN, GDAS GDAT, Emotional/Mental Health Therapist & Educator

11 Responses to “Playing with the New WordPress Block Editor”

  1. Judy Galyon Says:

    Your flowers are pretty, but the rest I didn’t get.

  2. Sam Sattler Says:

    Sometimes, as it turns out, software developers actually make positive changes. Happy that you are getting the hang of the new editor. It will appear to be a seamless transitions for your readers, but I know what you’re going through. Blogger is doing the same thing to me right now.

    Is it possible for you to look at the html version of your posts so that you can force an image size-change that way? That works for me with Blogger, and it’s no big deal now that I’ve done a little trial & error resizing and have worked out the kinks.

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      I’m laughing because as I was leaving a comment on your blog, you were leaving one on mine!

      I can resize individual photos, which is what really matters since I seldom post a lot of photos on one blog, and when I do, I generally space them out. And I can rearrange the photos in the collage, but I haven’t found out a way to reduce the entire collage. That seems to be a unique problem — most people want to enlarge the photos in the collage.

      I suppose if it really mattered, I could take a screen shot of the collage, and repost as a single photo, but then the individual photos lose their autonomy, which, come to think of it, isn’t really a problem. I doubt many people (if any) ever click on an image to see a larger version.

  3. Stuart Danker Says:

    I myself still prefer the Classic editor, especially when it comes to photo captions, but what you gonna do hey? I still have to use the Block editor just to keep up with the changes. Great work on the pics!

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      I definitely prefer the Classic editor, and especially the classic photo editor. I’ve never used photo captions, but they are still available in the block editor, so someday I might try to caption my photos and see what happens.

  4. rami ungar the writer Says:

    I’m not looking forward to the new version. I like the one we already use.

  5. snakesinthegrass2014 Says:

    Converting over to the block editor (i.e. “Gutenberg”) has definitely been a process for me. I’m writing way more html commands than I’d prefer for use in pictures, captions, and links to display properly. Also, I also miss some of the features in the classic editor such as the wonderful spell check utility it once had (but they removed for some reason). On the other hand, I do like the ability to move whole blocks up/down if something I’ve written might look better in a different place (of course, we used to just copy/paste paragraphs and move them). The pictures of your flowers are really beautiful.

    • Pat Bertram Says:

      I sure hope I don’t need to use html commands. I’ve forgotten most of what I knew, which wasn’t a whole lot to begin with. I really haven’t had that much of a problem with the block editor yet since (except for yesterday when I wanted to play around with the block editor), I’ve been doing what I always do — write my post using MS Word, and then copying it and pasting the article. I also figured out how to add photos and resize them for my needs, so that’s okay, too.

      And thanks for the compliment on my flowers!


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