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How to start coding

So you want to learn how to code?

That's awesome! I'm always encouraging people to learn more about web design. I literally can never shut up about code. This tutorial isn't really going to teach you how to do your own coding—there isn't enough time or character limit to cover that in one post—but I am going to talk about the best way to start out, the best mindset to have, and the best resources for learning the things you want to know how to do!

Walk before you run!

You've never coded anything before, or maybe you know a few things like how to style your text or add padding and widths; that's awesome and means you're well on your way to learning bigger and better things! But you want to make something really, really amazing.

I get the urge! You have a ton of ideas and you want to know how to put them into action. It's really easy to get swept up in your ideas for things and forget that you need to understand the basics first. Of course, you still might be able to swing something close to what you want to make through googling, trial and error, and asking questions—and I heavily encourage doing all three of those things no matter how much experience you gain—but, if you're wanting to make the move from edits to making your own content, what comes first is taking the time to learn the basics.

But why is that so important?

I know, I know—you guys didn't come here for a lecture. But here's the thing! That really cool project you have in mind is going to be really frustrating to make and probably won't come out the way you'd pictured if you don't look before you leap. That's just the reality of the situation.

Now, I'm not saying you have to be a CSS master to make a layout; we all start somewhere, and you should never be afraid to experiment and see what you get! Some of my first layouts are wretched. What I'm getting at here is simply that you're going to hit the ground running much easier if you have the right resources to learn from.

So my most important advice is simply this: Really learn what you're doing. That way when you google to find out how to do something more complex than the very basics the answers you get will actually make sense to you. The more you read the easier it gets, and in no time you're gonna be blowing through what you want to do with greater ease, and needing to reference learning sites less and less.

Because here's the thing: If what you're doing doesn't actually make sense to you it's all going to be an uphill battle, and if you can't explain (even if it's just to yourself) how you got something to work you're never going to level up those coding skills. That's why I think it's so important to start from the ground up and not rely on copy paste if you have an interest in learning how to design and code your own journal layouts and accessories.

Resources & Tutoring

I've listed a few really great (free!) resources below that will help you learn HTML, CSS, Javascript, and JQuery; each site has a different way of going about things, so you're bound to find one that works the best for you!

That being said, I've had inquiries in the past about one-on-one tutoring, and if you're the kind of person who learns best a live instructor please leave a comment below! I can't guarantee I'll start offering classes, but I definitely have an interest in it! I've been thinking on it and I think the most cost and time effective way to do it might be a small weekly livestream that starts with the basics and ends with making a full layout and entry code.

(I recommend learning language basics in the order I've put the categories in! HTML first, then CSS, then JS, and finally JQuery. Please note that you cannot use Javascript or JQuery on Insanejournal.)

♡ Happy Learning! ♡