Third-Party Help with Blog Templates

· Weblog Concepts

If you want edit or tweak the various templates that most blog programs use to render web pages from the content stored in their databases, consider using a third-party web design tool.
Even if you prefer to work directly with code, an editor such as BB Edit or HomeSite (or TextEdit or Notepad, for that matter) is infinitely preferable to working within the constraints of a text box on a web form. (You can’t directly search for text in such a form, for example).
If you like working with a wysiwyg editor smart enough to be able to ignore the custom tags (what Radio calls macros), such as Dreamweaver, GoLive, or even FrontPage by now, gopod help us. In dreamweaver, I was able to rearrange the table columns on the home page to put the menu down the right side, mostly by dragging table cells around. Soon, I’ll try switching all the formatting to CSS.
I’ll probably write up a little tutorial for my book site, since I didn’t discuss this use of Dreamweaver in the first edition. I could show how to tweak an existing template and how to turn an existing site design into blog templates. I’ll be sure to post here when the tutorial is up.
BTW, I could use the help of a “real” designer (I’m a writer, Jim! not a graphic designer) to get this site beyond inoffensive.