Ulysses’ Styles Got a Makeover

Ulysses lets you export your texts to beautiful PDF or DOCX documents, fully formatted. With different styles available, you can easily achieve a suitable layout for your writings. We know tastes differ and that various text types call for different formatting options. For Ulysses 2.5 we revised the built-in styles thoroughly and added a few new ones. Here’s a wrap-up.


Color Code

Color Code

Color Code is an all-purpose style that plays with colorful highlighting. Orange, midnight blue, lilac and mint green in combination with black text generate an color-infused but still decent style with a professional look.

Tagged words and passages are marked in a prominent way, making important parts of your texts easier to recognize. The font family is Optima, an elegant sans-serif with delicate and tapering characters.


Novel Cochin

Novel Cochin

Novel Cochin is a style template for a two-sided, book-like layout, with the left and right pages having mirrored type areas. The style is unobtrusive and content-centered.

The text is written in Cochin, a serif typeface originating from old French copper engravings. Especially the ornamented italic cut is striking and very graceful. The headline-typeface is Futura which, with its geometric forms, gives a modern twist to the primarily traditional layout. A light yellow and a subtle blue show marked passages, annotations and links.



Tip: To view a two-sided layout within the Quick Export preview, right-click on one of the pages and select “Two Pages“.



We have been asked frequently for an academic export style. There are a handful of academic publishing guidelines out there, the most established being APA, the Chicago Manual of Style and MLA. We combined their most important formal qualities with the opportunities Ulysses offers to create Papers.

Papers uses Times New Roman with 12-point font size, double line spacing and flush-left style. Uniform margins at the top, bottom, left, and right of every page are 1 inch. The first line of every paragraph is indented and page numbers sit in the top right corner of every page.



Tip: Like all Ulysses styles you can easily tweak Papers to meet your personal needs.

Rough Cut

Rough Cut

Rough Cut is an unpretentious style designed for text revision. It uses the monospaced typeface Courier exclusively. Monospaced means that every character of the font has the same width, just like when writing on a typewriter.

Distinctive layout elements like black or blue bars and bold labeling let Rough Cut appear modern and reduced, with a touch of coolness. To track the editing process, comments and deleted text passages are visible. Showing some of the markup tags underlines the unfinished state of the content, too.


Swiss Knife

Swiss Knife

At first glance Swiss Knife could appear as unobtrusive. But sometimes you just want a solid export style without fuss and with proper typography. Swiss Knife combines these qualities.

The Swiss typeface Avenir Next provides good legibility and is the most prominent characteristic of the style. The only colors used in Swiss Knife are a cool blue for code and links and a faint yellow for marked text and annotations.




Troy can be described as modern and functional. Balanced proportions and two highly popular fonts (Futura and Helvetica Neue) let Troy become a sturdy option.

Both typefaces are typical Swiss sans-serif fonts from the 1950s—60s. The gentle nude color contrasts with bold black accents, giving the layout a classy quality.



We hope you like to use our built-in styles for your writings. Do you feel like exploring more styles? Then visit our Style Exchange for further inspiration. You can find a whole bunch of styles for PDF and DOCX to download there and – furthermore – for HTML or ePub export. All of them were created by Ulysses users. If you want to modify a style to your liking or get into making a new one on your own, the Style Reference provides you with all the information you need.

“I’ve Always Been Most Passionate About Telling Stories”

30 years ago, the nuclear disaster of Chernobyl happened. On the occasion of the anniversary, Peter Zarko-Flynn published a photo essay on his personal blog, and gained considerable attention. In everyday life, Peter works as a communications consultant in London, from an office with a window onto nature. Here is our interview.

Peter Zarko-Flynn
Peter Zarko-Flynn

Please tell us something about you and what you are working on.

I’m a creative communications consultant, specialising in health and science. I set up my own business almost six years ago, but I have spent my entire career in media and communications. I started out as a News and Current Affairs producer with the BBC and worked with the organisation for five years, which prepared me well for my future work.

Right now, I’m working on a Public Engagement brochure for the Francis Crick Institute, a new biomedical research institute that opens soon in central London.

You’re working in a number of fields: communication consultancy, photography, media relations, training… What is your true passion?

I’ve always been most passionate about telling stories, from a very young age. I used to love writing classes at junior school. When I was ten years old, I wrote what – at the time – seemed quite an epic story about a group of children who discovered a gold mine. I was so engrossed in writing the story, I kept asking for more time to finish it. In the end my teacher put his foot down and insisted I hand it in as it was, because he needed to mark everyone’s work. I was so upset that it was not properly finished, although I think it taught me a valuable lesson on the importance of hitting a deadline! 

When I look at my career, telling compelling stories about people, or stories that affect people, is the thread that has run through it. Storytelling is why I went into journalism and it has informed a lot of the work I’ve been drawn to as a consultant.
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Let ProWritingAid Help You Edit

There are a great number of technical tools and apps for writers available – but which of them will actually help you get your work done? In this post we inspect ProWritingAid, a tool that helps you edit.


Writing needs editing. There is a reason that the “ugly first draft” has become so proverbial. Your first draft is written with the brain in creative mode, and it’s often better to not get caught up in specific word selection and sentence construction. Writers who think they can skip editing are almost certainly wrong. You can almost always come up with stronger words to express your ideas, and clearer ways to get your point across. And since most of your everyday texts don’t justify the expense of a professional editor, the way to go is self-editing. This is where ProWritingAid excels.
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Ten Things You Should Know About Writing a Novel With Ulysses, by David Hewson

Prize Draw: Win a Hand-Signed Hardback of David’s Latest Mystery Novel

David Hewson’s latest novel set in Amsterdam, ”Little Sister”, appeared in the UK on May 5 and will be published in the Netherlands in September. It was written entirely in Ulysses. Here are David’s top ten tips to follow if you’re planning a Ulysses novel too.

David Hewson
David Hewson is a bestselling author of mystery novels. He has also published several guidebooks for aspiring authors, among them “Writing a Novel With Ulysses” (available with

Amazon and iBooks).

1. Don’t wander. It’s tempting to try to use other pieces of software — outliners, notes apps — to monitor your novel as it progresses. With other apps maybe you need that. With Ulysses you don’t. Simplify, simplify, simplify by putting everything into Ulysses and nowhere else.

2. To do that you’re going to need organise things. Have a main group for your novel project, a subsidiary group for your manuscript and a second for management. Use the latter for all the subterranean detail your novel requires — location, research, characters, a book diary.

3. Monitor your progress. At the end of every week I make a note of how many words I’ve written over the past five days and how I’m feeling about the project. When you’re wondering if it’s going anywhere you can go back to these entries and hopefully convince yourself you’re still on track.

4. Always, always, jot down brief scene synopses at the beginning of each sheet so you can see in brief what’s going to happen. Try to end the day by creating a new sheet synopsis. It will help drag you forward when you come back to the work.

5. Take your work with you. Now Ulysses is on the iPad and iPhone too you can keep an eye on your project anywhere. Remember: writing isn’t just about setting down words. It’s about editing and having ideas too. I can’t write seriously on an iPhone. But I can set down chunks of dialogue and possible narrative events very easily — and do.
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Find Your Favorite Writing Font


It may be worth trying alternatives to your current writing font in Ulysses. Sarah explains why and introduces three of the team’s favorites.

When tasked with selecting a font for writing, most people tend to fall back on traditional choices such as Times New Roman, Courier or Garamond. These fonts are popular, since they come pre-installed on all of today’s computer systems, and they are good fonts, no doubt. So they get used a lot, and they have been around for quite a while. However, there is a broad variety of interesting fonts available today — fonts that can easily compare in terms of quality, or that are even better suited for the task.

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Be More Productive When Working on iPad or iPhone – Thanks to Automation

A Brief Introduction to Ulysses X-Callback-Support

Ulysses Ideas

Do you often find yourself doing the same things on your iPad or iPhone over and over again? Automation apps let you run such routines automatically, with the help of so-called x-callback-urls. Ulysses now also supports x-callback, allowing you to speed up your iOS workflows.

An x-callback-url triggers a particular action within an app and follows a certain app specific scheme. Here is a simple example for a Ulysses x-callback-url:


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