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Thinking About Another Blog Move

Published on Jan 24, 2024
Jerry Seinfeld thinking deeply on a pier.

Just as this blog began its life as The Go To Hell Space on Blogger before moving to these green pastures, I am once again contemplating another way of doing things.

I'm thinking about leaving WordPress. I really like it here, and I'm really glad I moved the blog here 3 years ago (wow), but I'm feeling a pull toward doing something different. After putting a lot of work and thought into it, I've decided to once again blog about it to help me decide once and for all. So here it is.

For the past 2-ish years, I've been getting really into building my own websites on a platform called Neocities. I've blogged about it before, it's where I'm building The Boktai Database. But that wasn't the first Neocities site I built. I've also been building and maintaining a personal site at theworksofegan.net, as part of an old-school idea of having a bespoke home on the web, independent of any social platforms. A place to post my projects, hobbies, media habits, links I want to share, etc.

The Works of Egan is built on top of a framework called Zonelets, which is basically a template comprised of HTML, CSS, and JavaScript files for you to customize and make your own. It's meant as a really quick and easy way to get a custom site off the ground. It's great.

It's also specifically set up to allow you to easily create a blog. As I was first building my site, I didn't really have a need for the blogging functionality, and certainly didn't want the mess of having two blogs, so I played around with it to get the hang of it, then mostly disregarded it. I tried (and succeeded at) setting up my own RSS feed, mostly because I was curious and I find it fun to tinker with things like that, but that was about it.

But recently, I've been feeling disconnected from Dream Avenue here on WordPress, and more interested in developing my own site. I keep thinking about how much fun it's been, and how much control it gives me over the exact look and feel of my site.

I've been building a new version of my site that would encompass both what theworksofegan currently is, and also this blog, for about the past two weeks now. I'm extremely happy with the way it looks and works, and I've had a ton of fun making it from scratch.

WordPress themes just can't give me exactly what I'm looking for in every single area of design (at least not the free themes I'm willing to use, and the cheapest hosting tier I'm willing to pay for, but tbh I don't even know what level of customization a premium theme or Custom CSS integration would give me here), so I always end up feeling at least a little unfulfilled, and my blog feels like a tiny bit of a compromise.

But at the same time, so what? WordPress gives me a clean, stable, functional, distraction-free platform to write my silly little blogs, and it just works. I write my words, I click publish, and my post is live. I don't have to write an <a> tag every time I want to link to something. I don't have to think too hard about image formatting. I don't have to manually update my RSS feed, or every page I want my post to appear on. It all just goes.

And they're not owned by Google or some shit. I'm mostly cool with Automattic as a company.

The design compromises are so minor, so unimportant, that they can be forgiven in light of everything else WordPress affords me. By and large, I've been able to make a really nice looking blog that works on desktop and mobile from the jump, and looks and works about 90% of the way I want it to with very little effort.

But maybe I like the effort. Maybe I'm a little freak who wants to obsess over how many pixels of padding an unordered list should have in my sidebar. Maybe I could get the same amount of satisfaction from uploading a bunch of updated HTML files to Neocities as I get from pressing "Publish" on WordPress.

Maybe I've spent several nights in the last two weeks staying at my computer to work on a new version of my site instead of playing video games in bed because I like figuring out how to make the computer do the thing I see in my head. Maybe I prefer HTML + CSS to the WordPress block editor.

Who could say?

Now, as is often the case with decisions like this, it's time for


Option 1: Move to Neocities


  • Complete control over layout, design, function, and feel.
  • I own it completely. The HTML files are mine.
  • "Oldweb" ethos of hand-coding your own website.
  • I enjoy making a site myself. Feels fun and fulfilling to figure things out.
  • Neocities is small and independent and I like their whole thing.
  • Join a community of like-minded people toiling away on their Y2K-ass little websites, with the ability to follow each other through Neocities
  • Save some money on domains.
  • I think I just want to.


  • Writing blogs in HTML can get in the way of just writing.
  • Having to migrate all of my posts would be . . . a lot.
  • What if I stop enjoying doing everything manually?
  • Site loads on Neocities can be slower.

Option 2: Stay on WordPress


  • Everything is already here. I don't have to do anything.
  • Extremely fast and easy to write a blog and publish it.
  • Things like tags and RSS are automatic.
  • I like the little bar graph of page views on my WP dashboard. Makes me feel like people are reading.
  • Some semblance of a community. Other bloggers have followed me on WordPress, and that's neat.
  • Gives me enough control over design and function to be happy.


  • Not enough control over design.
  • Post composer can slow down when working on a long enough post, or one with more than just text.
  • I think I might just want a change.

Well. Okay. I'm not 100% sure where that leaves me. I think that's a more even split than I was expecting.

My main sticking point is that I absolutely love the site I'm building, but I love the act of writing on WordPress. Until I resolve that impasse, I'm stuck right back where I started.

I think my next step is to see if I can find a writing workflow that feels right on the new site. If I can find a way of writing that doesn't feel more tedious than it has to be, then I think I have my answer.

I may not have made a decision here today, but as always, the act of blogging it out was a helpful way to get all my thoughts out of my head and into a format I can make better sense of.

Please feel free to leave a comment if you'd like to weigh in, or if you have any thoughts or suggestions!

I will, of course, post again if I make a decision.