I have been using WP badly for some years, my domain name server has just updated my self administered site to the latest version. I want to become active and work with my site. For years my site was my domain name (murphsays.com) and my WP was murphsays.com/blog. We have now moved my "front page" to the WP front page (that was /blog).
I see a proliferation of theme pages on the WP site, and there are many variations of capability. Let me tell you what I want to do and ask for suggestions at the theme level. I am fully familiar with posts and pages (which I'd call blogs and articles), I have used them both.
Let me give you my ideal format, which may not be possible. I'd like a front page that I can upload a picture to as the background theme. I'd like to put a link on that page to a page of "articles" (pages) with the ability for those with a password that I give them to respond, but not a general response. Also a link to the blog pages (posts) which would be open. And the ability to put links on the front page directly to recent articles by name. As I think of it, I'd like to have multiple links on the front page to articles by category so that visitors can chose politics versus music, etc.
Wow, that's a lot to ask - and I'm not asking for it all. I'm asking you to help me get started in choosing the best of the many theme formats for my purpose - I'll take it from there. They are well described on the WP site, but there are so many that correlating the differences isn't easy. I hope you all can reduce my choices of ones I try. To summarize my desires, I want to direct my varied audience to the appropriate places on the front page - and limit the audience for more personal pages with passwords. I have many correspondents who are, like myself, elderly curmudgeons who don't like an open forum (I'm happy with an open forum if I choose it to be, like my blogs).
Jonathan W. Murphy