Editorial Calendar, a plugin for WordPress, is a tool that gives you a graphical view of when your posts are scheduled throughout the month. It was one of the first plugins I ever used with WordPress and now that I’m trying to blog on a daily basis I depend on it. Here’s why:
Scheduling Blog Posts
The most obvious reason to use the editorial calendar is to schedule posts. Your unscheduled drafts are listed in the right hand column and you can just drag and drop them onto the day you want them to appear. You can also drag and drop future posts within the calendar, so if you have a post scheduled for a Sunday, just move it to Monday.
That last idea is important. I following Twitter activity for WordPress and some coding terms and find that everything slows down to almost nothing on Fridays. I try to avoid posting anything important on Fridays, so with the editorial calendar I can move posts around to put a round-up post or something less important on Friday.
Controlling the Blog Post Topic Mix
I tend to get hung up on one topic and write several blogs in a row about that topic. For example, yesterday’s post was about email validation and I have a lot more to say about validation and form handlers in general. But posting all those articles one right after the other is a little boring for readers. Using the editorial calendar I can spread out those posts over the course of a few weeks, hopefully making a bigger impact for each one when they appear.
Capturing Blog Post Ideas
While I’m reviewing my Twitter feed or reading Feedly I will have my editorial calendar open to capture potential topics to blog about. I just click on the “New Post” link on a day in the future and type the potential title or reminder, along with a link to the article, and save as a draft. I can then drag it into my unscheduled draft column or leave it where it is and just follow up to write the actual article.
If you are using the Editorial Calendar plugin for WordPress I’d like to hear how you use it to help with your writing.