How to Create Private Journals in WordPress

One PublishPress user wrote to us and asked about this situation: “I would like every user to get a place where they can enter their own journal entries that no one else can see.”

This it is possible to set up private journals with the PublishPress plugins, and I'll explain how in this post.

Step #1. Install the plugins

For this tutorial, we're going to use the “PublishPress Permissions Pro” plugin. I also recommend having the User Switching plugin on your site as it makes it very easy to test different user accounts.

Step #2. Create the users

I recommend using the “Author” role for these users.

  • Go to the “Users” link in your WordPress admin menu.
  • Click the “Add New” button.
  • Create a new user account. 
  • Choose the “Author” role.
  • Click “Add New User”.

You can now click “Switch To” on the main Users screen:

Author Switch
Author Switch

You will now be seeing WordPress through the eyes of an Author. This next image shows what they will see. There will be a very limited set of options in the left-hand menu, and no posts on the main “Posts” screen.

Authors Journal
Authors Journal
  • Click “Add New”.
  • You will be able to create a new post.
My Journal
My Journal

So your author setup is now complete. You can create WordPress accounts for your journal writers and put them into the “Author” role. Your vendors will have their own “Blog” area with these features:

  • Your authors will be able to create posts, but not publish them without approval.
  • Your authors will not be able to see posts from anyone else.

You can also go a step further and hide these posts from the outside world. In the extra step below, you'll see how to automatically restrict those posts so that they are only visible to the people who wrote them.

Extra Step: Set all the Journal Posts to “Private”

One additional step you can take is to make all the journal posts private. This means that only the author can see their own posts.

  • Go to “Permissions”, then “Settings”.
  • Click the “Editing” tab.
  • Set the “Posts” option to “Private” and click “lock”.
  • Click ‘Save Changes”.
Private Posts
Private Posts
  • Steve Burge

    Steve is the founder of PublishPress. He's been working with open source software for over 20 years. Originally from the UK, he now lives in Sarasota in the USA. This profile is generated by the PublishPress Authors plugin.

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