How I write blog posts in “Classic Editor”

It has been about a year now since WordPress introduced the new Gutenberg “block editor.” Although my impression is that the block editor is nice for building websites, it is not very user friendly for someone who just wants to put up a blog post.

I’ve seen some articles and WordPress support posts online about how you can disable the Gutenberg Editor (aka “block editor”) in order to use the classic editor “plugin.” However, I have a “premium” plan, and I know lots of bloggers who use the “personal” or even the free plans. When I look at the plugins area of my WordPress dashboard, I see that you have to have the more costly “business” plan, which is three times more expensive than my “premium” plan, to be able to use plugins. Maybe the problem is also because my blog is hosted by WordPress instead of another website host? All I know is, I don’t see a place to disable Gutenberg in my settings and I can’t install the “Classic Editor” plugin, either. Hence the background for today’s problem-solving post.

Now, maybe everyone else already knows how to access the “Classic Editor” in WordPress, making my post both unnecessary and possibly a little pathetic. But until I stumbled upon it while editing an earlier post, I didn’t know I still could use the classic editor. So just in case you’re suffering through with the block editor like I was, here is my own workaround to bypass the block editor and write all my blog posts using the “Classic Editor.”

You can click on the images below to enlarge them. I screenshot the whole screen to provide the overall context, but then the details are too small to see well.

First, there appears to be no way around starting your post with the block editor. If you know how to start out your posts from the get-go with the classic editor, I’d love to know your secret! In the meantime, I start with the block editor default, write my title, and then save my draft.



(UPDATE! I was just helping someone with their blog and discovered that there’s a “Screen Options” button at the upper right-hand corner of the screen. You can just click on that and choose the Classic Editor view. So check that option out and then use whatever else might be helpful in this post if that’s not quite enough to get you there. FURTHER UPDATE: NEVER MIND! Because now I don’t see “Screen Options” as an option anymore. So disregard that previous update and continue as described below 🙂 )

After saving my draft, I open a new tab in my internet browser right beside the first and type in my WordPress blog’s URL plus “/wp-admin/edit.php.” Or to make that a little more clear, to get to my old-school dashboard I type in:

Once in the old dashboard, you’ll see a list of your published and draft posts. If you hover your cursor arrow just under your current draft post, you’ll see a “Classic Editor” option appear under your post’s title.

Click on “Classic Editor” and  . . . HELLO, OLD FRIEND! ❤

From here you can write your blog post as if the WordPress block editor never happened!

It would be so nice if WordPress could put a “Classic Editor” button right on the main interface to make it easier for bloggers who just want to put up a simple blog post and don’t care about all the bells and whistles (and aggravations) of the block editor.

But at least for now WordPress has kept the Classic Editor as an option if you’re willing to do the extra work of finding it.

About Katherine Wikoff

I am a college professor at Milwaukee School of Engineering, where I teach literature, film studies, political science, and communication. I also volunteer with a Milwaukee homeless sanctuary, Repairers of the Breach, as chair of the Communications and Fund Development Committee.
This entry was posted in Writing, blogging. Bookmark the permalink.

23 Responses to How I write blog posts in “Classic Editor”

  1. babsje says:

    Very helpful post, Katherine. I’m with you on love for the Classic Editor. My process is a little different and it’s good to know that your workaround is an option…for the next time WP decides to improve the software. 😊 Best, Babsje

    Liked by 1 person

  2. mworfolk says:

    Oh my goodness, this is so helpful! I have also been wishing for a Classic Editor button and your instructions make it very easy. Thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m so glad to know you have also been wishing for a Classic Editor button. I was starting to think I was the only one. Thank you, Melinda!


    • Melinda, after I replied earlier I remembered seeing something in the news about wildfires in British Columbia. I think they are well away from where you are, but I still wanted to ask if you are okay and your friends and family?


      • mworfolk says:

        Thank you for asking–there are three (contained, thankfully) wildfires within about 150 km away from us in Prince George. Unfortunately however there are about 200 wildfires burning in British Columbia right now, and the worst thing is one entire town, Lytton (about 8 hours away from me) basically burned down to the ground within minutes a few days ago. I feel so terrible for all those poor people–they had almost no time to evacuate, and within minutes, their homes and town are just gone.

        Part of this is because we just had a “heat dome” that caused temps of over 40 degrees Celsius (104 F) over most of the province, including up north where I am. It was terrifyingly hot! I was worried for my elderly parents and relatives in Vancouver, where it was almost as hot. Most of us don’t have air conditioning because the temps just never go that high–usually we are around 23 C (73 F) on a normal summer day. One day during the heat dome it reached 36 C (97 F) INSIDE our house. It was so bad.

        I hope that you are safe from heat domes and wildfires where you are!

        Liked by 1 person

        • That heat sounds absolutely brutal. Having your house hit 97 degrees INSIDE is insane! Knowing there are 200 fires is really frightening, too—both for the sheer number and for the speed at which they can move, like the one that destroyed Lytton. Scary! I hope temperatures will drop soon and you get relief. Rain would be especially good to (hopefully) extinguish those fires. Sending positive thoughts your way, hoping everyone stays safe!❤️


  3. babsje says:

    Katherine you are my HERO. I had an alternative work-around in place for months but cloning existing posts to update body copy and add new media resulted in ok text but sizing issues on photos. All of the tech support I found online says to add a plugin but as you point out WP requires a business account. I refuse to pay for restoring functionality a vendor took away. Whatever happened to backwards compatibility? I revisited tour blog post and it works PERFECTLY. Many thanks. Babsje. Humming more Chicago tunes. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  4. babsje says:

    Hi Again Katherine. This was immensely useful, many thanks. Today, I needed to print one specific 4-page-long post to snail mail to the man who was the hero of the story. Do you realize that WordPress requires the business plan upgrade in order to print a post? They require one of several plug-ins. Sheesh. I was able to take a work around but it took 4 hours of trial and error of creating a draft of each of the 4 pages individually and then viewing each draft then r-clicking and choosing print to PDF. It would not let me print the entire 4 page doc in one fell swoop. Page 1 looked perfect, but pages 2-4 had no content displaying whatsoever. I tried all the helpful tips out there in internet search land but they all want an installed plugin. Have you ever tried to print? I bet you have a more friendly solution than mine. Best, Babsje

    Liked by 1 person

  5. That makes sense. I hope the HP works for you. Good luck!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Wyrd Smythe says:

    Following links to posts about the WP Classic Editor, and noticed your post suffers from the “lost paragraphs” bug when viewed in the WP Reader. It’s fine on your website, but anyone who views it in the Reader, not so much. FWIW, you might like this post I just published about this bug between the Classic Editor and the WP Reader.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Nice piece of detective work – well done!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Pingback: Another week gone by … | northumbrian : light

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