Improve Navigation in Sheets using Bookmarks

Today’s tip is about a tiny feature that still can be of great help for a writer’s workflow: bookmarks. The idea of bookmarks is as simple as obvious: remember a certain text passage. In our case, a bookmark always refers to a paragraph. Bookmarking is really easy. Just double-click the number of the paragraph you want to remember:

Bookmark

You don’t see paragraph numbers in your sheets? Then you need to enable them first in the menu View › Show Paragraph Numbers.

A bookmark remains attached to its paragraph even if you add or remove text in front of it. You can move it to another paragraph or erase it by dragging it out of the window.

What’s more, bookmarks will also show up in the Navigator:

Navigator

Use the Navigator to get quickly to paragraphs you want to continue writing, revise or mark for any other reason. Just press CMD-8 to open it – you’ll find your bookmarks right there.

P.S. Bookmarks will only work in the sections iCloud and On My Mac, but not in Daedalus or External Sources.

Introducing TextBundle

Plus give-away: Get a free license for the Markdown previewing app Marked 2!

When working with different Markdown applications, sometimes things can get a little awkward. For a better future we collaborated with Brett Terpstra, maker of Marked, to develop TextBundle. This new file format facilitates the exchange of Markdown text files between sandboxed apps.

TextBundle.org

Sandboxing is required for all apps available on the Mac and the iOS App Store, i.e. they’re only permitted to access files users explicitly provide. This procedure aims to grant a high level of data security, but can cause inconveniences. An example: Markdown files may contain references to external images. When sending such a file from a Markdown editor to a previewer, users will have to explicitly permit access to every single image file.

TextBundle is a new data exchange format for sandboxed Markdown applications. It bundles the Markdown text and all referenced image into a single file. Currently, TextBundle is supported by the latest versions of Ulysses (1.2.2) and Marked (2.3.4). But we think, users of any Markdown application would benefit from a comprehensive portability – that’s why we hope other developers will follow and make their apps support TextBundle! The specifications and all the details can be found on the dedicated page textbundle.org.

Win a License for Marked

Marked Logo

Give TextBundle a whirl – with Ulysses and Marked! Marked is a previewer for Markdown files, offering great features for previewing, reviewing and exporting beautiful documents, developed by Brett Terpstra. We’re giving away 10 free licenses of Marked 2 – just fill out our form. The winners will be selected on Monday, September 1st at 12pm CEST.

And the winners of our raffle are:

  • Adithya Sudarsan
  • Mac Simonson
  • Ben Whiting
  • Antonio Storino
  • Yoshihiko Ikegami
  • Tom Mueller
  • Jim Schwartz
  • Keith Bage
  • Pyoungwon Park
  • Andrea Di Marco

Do You Write? – The Video and Your Stories

Writing is ubiquitous. It is an essential part of our lives, no matter if we actually call ourselves writers. We write at a desk, on the train, in bed. Some write a million words, some write only a couple every day. A pamphlet might be written to change the world, while a journal is keeping a secret with care. Writing can be a profession or a vocation, a necessity or a pleasure, a way to communicate or a self-reflection. And whatever we write – be it for money, for change, for love –, we do so deliberately. What we write means something to us, and quite often it means something to others.

Do you write?

That’s what our new website and video Do You Write? are about. Because the people who write are the people Ulysses is made for, that is, you.

Do you write? We asked this question several passionate writers and Ulysses users. You can find their stories gathered on our new website, and we already published some of them at full length here in our blog.

And we’re asking you: What does writing mean to you? What are you writing about? How are you using Ulysses for it? Tweet us using #doyouwrite, post your comment to our Facebook page, or send us a message.

We’re really looking forward to read what you write!

Customize Your Sheet List

The sheet list – the middle pane in Ulysses’ interface – offers a handy preview of all sheets in a group or filter. This allows you to find sheets for editing, previewing or exporting. A typical item of your sheet list looks like this:

Sheet List: Overview

If you don’t need one of these features (e.g. if you don’t want to see your writing goals in your sheet list), you can customize the look of your sheet list using settings in the “View” menu:

The View Menu

Let’s have a look at each of the settings. The first important menu item is Sheet Preview. Here you can change three things about each item of the sheet list:

  • the number of text preview lines,
  • whether keywords shown be shown,
  • whether writing goals should be shown.

If you’re a minimalist, you might want to disable keywords as well as goals and set the number of preview lines to 1. In this way, you can see a lot more sheets at once in the list. On the other hand, if you want to see as much of a sheet’s text as possible, set the number of preview lines to 6.

Next up are sorting options. By default, sheets are not sorted automatically, but are arranged by hand. If you prefer to see sheets in their alphabetical order though, use the By Title option. You can also sort them by date, showing the most recent sheet at the top. The last option, Reverse Order, should be quite obvious ;)

If you’re sorting sheets by date, you probably also want to see the modification date, right? The last entry, Show Date, does just this.

Ulysses III 1.2.2 – The Yellowstone Update

Ulysses III 1.2.2 is Ready for Sale

Are you (or do you want to be) one of one million Yosemite beta testers, and at the same time one of slightly fewer Ulysses users? Then this update is for you. Version 1.2.2 fixes all known issues and crashes on OS X 10.10 Beta 5. Ulysses runs stable and all parts of the app should work properly.

If you’re planning to stay on Mavericks in the first instance, you will also find a couple of quirks and minor issues addressed. As always, feel free to check the release notes for details. Version 1.2.2 is available on the Mac App Store now.

“My First Novel Probably Wouldn’t Have Been Written Without Ulysses”

Fiction authors, journalists, academics, screenwriters – all kinds of authors are using Ulysses for their writing. We asked some of them to share their story. Niklas Janz is a Swedish academic and occasional novelist. In this post he explains among other things how he uses Ulysses for organizing his novel writing.

Please tell us something about you: Who are you? Which role does writing play in your life? What are you writing and how much?

Niklas Janz, Photo: Max Palm
Niklas Janz, Photo: Max Palm

My name is Niklas Janz and I live in Stockholm, Sweden, where I work as a researcher and university teacher. I do write quite a bit in these professions. But I also write fiction; I published my first novel in 2008 and the sequel is coming out in 2014 (it takes time to write in your free time!). The books are primarily directed to young adults and are sometimes categorized as fantasy or magical realism, as substantial parts of them take place in the main characters’ dreams. I guess you can say that they deal with what may be happening to you while you think you are sound asleep. They are (so far) only available in Swedish.

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Ulysses Shortcuts: The Cheat Sheet

Keyboard shortcuts help to speed up your workflow. Many people prefer to use them for frequent commands rather than clicking through menus. That’s why you can easily access most of Ulysses’ features without reaching for the mouse.

We’ve prepared a handy overview of (almost) all available shortcuts in Ulysses. Ready for printing in both DIN A4 or US Letter. Enjoy!

A screenshot of the downloadable PDF.
Click the image to download the PDF. (Letter version available as well.)

P.S. The menu shortcut you’re actually looking for is not in the list? No problem – you can also create and customize shortcuts.

Turn Back Time With Ulysses’ Version History

Do you know this? You delete a sentence in your text, and a couple of days later you change your mind and would like to turn back time to restore it? Probably most writers have already been in this situation. With Ulysses you don’t have to rely on your capacity to remember – the history of your writings is just two clicks away.

Go to the File menu and select Browse All Versions…. This will open a time tunnel with two windows.

Versions Browser

Left, there is the current content of your sheet, while the right window displays an older version. On the right side of your screen you can easily navigate through your sheet’s history. Just choose a particular point in time to display the respective version.

If you want, you can now bring back an entire version by clicking Restore at the bottom of the screen. If it is only a particular sentence you wish to revive, just copy it from the older version and paste it straight to your current sheet on the left side. When you’re done, click Done. And that’s it.

How to Get Your Writing Out There and Make It Look Good, Part Three: Ulysses Style Exchange

This is the final post of our series on how to use Ulysses for exporting and styling your writings. We illuminated the power of the app’s export feature, and tweaked a Ulysses Style Sheet to let our PDF output shine. To bring it to a close, we’re having a look at Ulysses Style Exchange, a web platform where users can upload, download and rate Ulysses styles.

A Variety of Styles

As you probably know, Ulysses ships with a handful of selected styles for the formatting of your exported writings. You already gave them a shot, and neither one of them is exactly what you need? Or you’re just curious to see what others find useful for their work? Then you should go browsing Ulysses Style Exchange!

Ulysses Style Exchange Home

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“It Isn’t Literature, but Hopefully It Is Workmanlike Prose”

For many novelists, screenplay writers, journalists, bloggers, copywriters and academics, Ulysses is the writing app of choice. We asked some of them to share their stories. In this post, Matt Cawood, journalist from Australia, talks about writing with Ulysses.

Please tell us something about you: Who are you, what is your profession and what are you working on?

I’m a journalist writing about agriculture and the environment, with a few other projects on the side. I live and work in Australia, but have travelled in Europe, Asia and North America on various assignments.

Which role does writing play in your professional life? What are you writing and how much?

Most of my writing involves newspaper articles of around 500-1000 words, but I sometimes need to stretch out to around 3000 words. My writing load varies. Sometimes I may write 4000-5000 words a week; last week, I pushed out more than 7000 words in a few days. It isn’t literature, but hopefully it is workmanlike prose.

(I just used Statistics to sum what I’ve got sitting in Ulysses at the moment: 77,000 words since I last cleaned out my folders in March. I may write a bit more than I think I do.)

Could you describe what you use Ulysses for?

All the writing I do, I do in Ulysses. Articles, essays, transcripts of interviews, notes-to-self.

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