How to enable the Author Bio Box in TwentyThirteen

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The TwentyThirteen theme has a built-in option to display an Author Bio Box underneath each post. It’s nicely formatted and can be implemented very easily – if only their authors would mention that this feature even exists, let alone how to activate it.

To understand how it works, we need to take a peek at the content.php file in the theme. Around line 70 we see three conditions that need to be met for the box to show up:

  • is_single() – the post needs to be a single post, not a page
  • get_author_meta(‘description’) – in your WordPress Profile, some text needs to be present in the description box
  • is_multi_author() – more than one author must be present on this WordPress installation

This means that on regular multi-user WordPress sites, TwentyThirteen will display the Bio Box automatically underneath regular posts. To make this happen on sidle-user sites, it is enough to create a second dummy user – on some installations at least. In my tests this doesn’t work reliably though (don’t ask me why – I’m just the messenger).

To make this work regardless of which mood WordPress appears to be in, we can also tweak this line and remove the third (multi-user check) condition like this:

if ( is_single() && get_the_author_meta( 'description' ) ) {
Β  get_template_part( 'author-bio' );
}

Now we’ll see the Author Bio Box for single users as well!

Note however that there’s one more bit of inappropriateness that we may want to remove, namely a link to “all posts by this author”. That line just ruins everything for me. Not to worry, we can take care of this in a file called author-bio.php.

Towards the end at around line 30 we’ll see that this line and link is printed with a printf() statement. Comment it out and that link is gone.

Demo Theme

For a fully working demo with many other bells and whistles, check out two of my tweaked child themes on GitHub. They both have the above implementation:

Thanks to the suggestions in this forum post.Β 

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