(This is a new weekly feature, the Weekend Project. Every week, I’ll point you to a bunch of great resources for doing a particular thing on the Web – in this case, starting and awesomeifying a WordPress blog.)
To anyone who asks me about starting a blog, I recommend WordPress over and over. It’s the Firefox of blogging – incredibly extensible, impossibly customizable, and since everyone uses it there’s a huge community of helpful people to get you going like a champion.
But all that can mean it’s incredibly daunting to get started. With 50 kajillion themes out there, which one do you pick? And what the heck is a plugin?
Well, I’m only going to help slightly. Everyone’s got different needs and tastes, so giving you “the only four things you’ll ever need for WordPress” might not work so well. Instead of doing that, I’ll point you to some of the best resources that’ll turn you into a WordPressing machine pretty quickly.
Out of the millions of ways to use, customize and improve WordPress, here’s 1,136.
The Basics – Choosing a Theme and Getting Up and Running
Smashing Magazine – 100 Amazing Free WordPress Themes for 2009
Blog Perfume – 45 Best Free WordPress Themes of All Time
Noupe – 45+ Must See WordPress Themes
Smashing Apps – 21 Mindblowing Premium-Like Free WordPress Themes
How to Make My Blog – 18 Most Downloaded WordPress Plugins Ever
Webdesigner Depot – 300+ Resources to Help You Become a WordPress Expert
Hackery – Tweak, Fix, and Improve
Hongkiat – 40+ Most-Wanted WordPress Tricks and Hacks
Site Sketch 101 – The 15 Best WordPress Plugins to Use in 2010
Pro Blog Design – 10 Best Plugins to Get More Comments
Become a WP Ninja – The Unknown Awesome of WordPress
WP Beginner – 55 Most Wanted Tips, Tricks and Hacks
Pro Blog Design – 30 Ways to Improve Readability
Quick Online Tips – 50 Best WordPress Plugins for Power Blogging
The Rabbit Hole – Resource Resources
Blog Themes Plus – 57 Best WordPress Resources
Steffan Antonas – 100+ Killer WordPress Resources
Blogussion – 100+ Lists to Help You Become a Better Blogger
Okay, so there’s a lot of stuff here. So bookmark this post, and if you’re in need of some WordPress awesomeness, come back and go hunting. Or do what I did, don’t sleep for 19 days, and read every single word.
And, if you’re in the mood for more, check out all of the sites I’ve linked to – they’re all great resources for WordPress users, whether you’re a newbie or a pro. Happy weekend!