Obligatory First Post

The new site is alive!  In my last post I talked about my reasons for switching to SquareSpace from Drupal.  In the end, it came down to maintenance.  I don't want this website to be a project site where I was constantly tweaking or refactoring sections when I learned something new about Drupal.  I also don't want the hassle of keeping up with updates, especially since I ran into so many issues trying to update from Drupal 8.3 to 8.4 while developing the first version.

Ultimately, I didn't want to be my own client.  I spent far too much time debating with myself over minutia in the design aspects and trying to learn how to build certain functional pieces, only to get stuck in an upgrade quagmire.

Another option recommended to me was Backdrop.  It's development line is parallel to Drupal 7, so there wouldn't be much to learn structurally, but I still face the issue of design, the time for development, and constant updates.  In addition, I've never installed a Backdrop instance, so there would still be some learning curve.

I considered just posting to Medium or another blogging service, but I wanted my own domain name, so that was out.

That led me to SquareSpace.  At first it felt like I was cheating, but when I had a functional site in a matter of hours, I didn't care.  It was quick, clean, and the templates handle most of the decision making for you, while still being extremely customizable.  Plus, it easily integrates with services like Google Analytics, Disqus, and Amazon.

SquareSpace is good, but it has its limitations.  There are some areas that need to be cleaned up to be more accessible, and I can't create different layouts for different content collections.  This makes the Essays and Journal pages hard to balance, as they have to use the same layout.  I'm not sure yet how I'm going to handle other simple post types, like poems, songs, and short stories.

With a little creativity and some custom CSS I can fix some of the accessibility issues, and there is an option to open up a Dev mode to allow developers to customize templates, so maybe I can hack my way through that to achieve different layouts.  It would be nice, however, if SquareSpace could incorporate another, simpler content collection next to Blog Posts.

I'm happy with it so far.  The lack of customizability is a little handcuffing, and yet liberating at the same time.  The design far exceeds anything I could come up with, and I'm stoked I don't have to freak out when Drupal 8.5 is released.

Best of all, I can begin aiming my energy toward writing instead of building.  There's lots of good stuff to come.