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Alternative to the Co-Authors Plus WordPress Plugin

Co-Authors Plus is an old and popular WordPress plugin.

By default, WordPress allows you to choose a single author for content. Co-Authors Plus was a solution to this, because it allowed you to assign multiple authors to one content item.

However, Co-Authors Plus has only had a small number of updates in the last few years. Also, it can be hard to use because it requires you to edit your template files.

The Multiple Authors add-on for PublishPress is a fork of Co-Authors Plus that's worth checking out.

We reviewed the main PublishPress plugin, which is a really good editorial calendar. Multiple Authors is an extra feature for that main plugin.

Video guide to Multiple Authors

Text guide to Multiple Authors

If you install Multiple Authors, you'll see a new box on the right-hand side of all your posts. You can add and remove authors on this screen (click here to learn about Authors permissions in WordPress).

choose a guest author

Instead of manually editing your template files, the Multiple Authors add-on gives you several different options to display the authors’ box:

  1. At the bottom of your content
  2. In a widget
  3. Via a shortcode
  4. Replacing the default author dispaly

And yes, if you want to do things manually, there are filters and actions available so you can add the Multiple Authors output to your template files.

However, the widget is probably the easiest and most flexible solution. Here's how the Multiple Authors plugin appears on the frontend of a site, inside a widget:

guest author profile

Here's how Multiple Authors can automatically replace the core author display:

authors core

If you want to learn about alll the display options, read this Multiple Authors documentation.

Multiple Authors Settings

You can access the Multiple Authors configuration screen by clicking on the “PublishPress” link in the WordPress admin menu. After the menu loads, click on the “Multiple Authors” tab:

publishpress multiple authors tab

The "Multiple Authors" feature doesn’t appear on all post types by default. You need to select what post types you want to use:

multiple authors top settings

You can also configure several different layout options for the content.

multiple authors settings


All-in-all, "Multiple Authors" is a worthy successor to the older Co-Authors Plus plugin and has some nice extra features that make it easier to use.

If you want to find out more, we also wrote about how Multiple Authors can handle guest author posts.

About the author

Steve is the founder of OSTraining. Originally from the UK, he now lives in Sarasota in the USA. Steve's work straddles the line between teaching and web development.