The easiest way to make a ‘blog’ on Neocities

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Because of the nature of static websites, it’s not the easiest thing to make a blog. You can do it manually by making each blog entry its own page, and you can speed up the process by copying a template for each page.

But here’s a much easier way! The kicker is that your blog isn’t really on Neocities – it’s on dreamwidth which is free!

Limitations:

  • Dreamwidth feeds are only checked for updates once an hour – which means your feed is updated once per hour and if you go back and make a change, it won’t update until it checks again.
  • Only entries from the last 14 days will appear.
  • Individual post formatting isn’t saved (like bold, italics, etc.)

Advantages:

  • You get to work with an actual blogging interface so it feels more natural.
  • There are less steps to post an entry (than manually making pages).
  • You also get to be a part of the dreamwidth community.

Sign up for dreamwidth & grab your RSS feed

  • Sign up for an account at dreamwidth.org
  • Hover over Create and choose Post Entry to make a test entry.
  • Visit your blog at username.dreamwidth.org to make sure your post is there. Don’t worry about styling it, none of that will come through.
  • Now, copy this URL into your address bar but change username to your dreamwidth username: https://username.dreamwidth.org/data/rss
  • This is an RSS feed of your blog! Keep this tab open because we’re going to need this URL in a bit.
  • Open a new tab and go to FeedRoll’s RSS Viewer.
  • Copy your dreamwidth RSS feed URL into the URL field.
  • Click on Preview Feed on the right to preview the text that the feed will have.
  • For Show channel? play around with the different options and use the preview to see how you like it.
  • For Number of items to display, enter the number of iblog entries to display if you want to show only a few – by default 0 shows all items.
  • For Show/Hide item descriptions, this refers to your entry content. If you ‘hide’ the description, it will only show links to your entries and not the entries themselves.
  • For Show item author? choose yes or no.
  • For Use HTML in item display? select Yes.
  • For Show item posting date? select yes or no.
Remember you can preview your feed at any point before generating.
  • When done, click on Generate JavaScript.

Your code will look a little like this:

<script language="JavaScript" src="https://www.feedroll.com/rssviewer/feed2js.php?src=https%3A%2F%2Fsadgrl.dreamwidth.org%2Fdata%2Frss&chan=y&utf=y&html=a"  charset="UTF-8" type="text/javascript"></script>

<noscript>
<a href="https://www.feedroll.com/rssviewer/feed2js.php?src=https%3A%2F%2Fsadgrl.dreamwidth.org%2Fdata%2Frss&chan=y&utf=y&html=y">View RSS feed</a>
</noscript>

Put it on your website

  • Create a new file – you can call it anything but let’s say it’s blog.html
  • Paste in the code you generated, and put it between the <body></body> tags. It will probably look like this:

See the Pen Untitled by Sadness (@sadness97) on CodePen.

  • It doesn’t look like much right now, but that’s because we haven’t styled it yet.

Styling your blog

  • Look at the pen below and choose the CSS tab to copy the CSS I used:

See the Pen RSS Guide 2 by Sadness (@sadness97) on CodePen.

I just cleaned up the formatting a bit, but I also commented my CSS so you can see where to change what.

As you can see above...

Every entry ends with the word 'comments' :(

I could not for the life of me figure out how to hide this text, since it is considered part of the 'entry'. (If you know how to do this, hit me up!)

If it looks less awkward, feel free to remove the bit of CSS hiding the comment image. It would look like this:

See the Pen RSS Guide 2 by Sadness (@sadness97) on CodePen.

How this works

  • When you want to make a new entry, just do it on dreamwidth (at 1:22PM)
  • As an added bonus, you get a free dreamwidth blog, and you can customize the layout of that too if you’d like! Putting it on your website lets you customize how it looks further.
  • Your update won’t show up on your website immediately. According to Dreamwidth’s FAQ, feed accounts are only checked for updates once an hour, and only entries from the last 14 days will appear on Dreamwidth.

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