A couple of Twitter questions posted to @weblogtooltips (are you following us yet?) about publishing posts in the future with plugins make me think that some users of WordPress might not know about the cool features that are built right into the admin panel. (yes, WordPress does that)
As the screenshot to the left shows, the publish box in WordPress holds a couple of hidden gems that might not immiediately be apparent. You can do one of two things with the fantastic post you just wrote (beside just posting it outright):
- You can make your post public and make it a sticky on the front page or you can choose to password protect it or make it completely invisible to people that are not logged in to your blog. This option is available on your “Add New Post” page under the Publish box. You have to click on “Edit” next to “Visibility: Public” to see these settings. Just change the settings, add a password if you want it protected and click Publish
- You can also setup your post to be published in the future. You can access this setting by clicking on the Edit link next to “Publish immediately“. Just set the date/time you want your post to be published (future dates result in future posts, past dates result in posting in the past) and Voila, it gets scheduled for the future. You can also use this feature when editing a post to move posts around chronologically on your blog, though I suggest against it. Posting in the future does not require any other setup of any kind. If your server’s time is set correctly and your timezone is set correctly for your blog (under Settings tab->General, shows a useful example), your post will appear automagically on your blog on the scheduled time.
Remember that just clicking on “Publish” publishes your post even if the Status is set to draft. There is also a “Pending Review” feature under the “Status: Draft” section that can be used to differentiate between true drafts and articles that are complete but need to be reviewed. This option might be useful for multi-user blogs or just to keep track of articles that are complete and those that still need work.