How to Customize Your Writing Environment in Ulysses for iPad

Are you a first-line-indenter? Would you choose an unpretentious font like Menlo, or something fancier? Do you prefer writing on a bright white background over light grey or midnight black? Neither one of these options will fit all writer’s preferences. That’s why Ulysses for iPad allows to customize your writing environment. You’ll find the following settings when tapping the gear icon in the upper right corner. Here is an overview.

Ulysses for iPad, fresh from the App Store
Fresh from the App Store: Ulysses for iPad. You can customize it to your liking.

Font

Ulysses’ default font ist Menlo, but you can change it to any system font. Alternatively, you can add a custom font just by opening an OTF or TTF file in Ulysses. I’ve tried that with Brandon here, the font we use on our website.

Ulysses for iPad Settings

Layout

Does the default layout setting 64@1.6 sound mysterious to you? Well, just tap, and you’ll see, it’s not: 64 refers to the number of characters shown per line, 1.6 is the line height. Good to know: A smaller line width will result in a larger text size. Further layout options include paragraph spacing and first line indent.

Landscape vs. Portrait
Landscape vs. portrait: The number of characters per line remains the same, while text is displayed smaller in portrait mode.

Theme

Themes are used to define the colors of the editor. Ulysses for iPad ships with a couple of built-in themes, the default theme is called iOS. For the time being, building your own theme is only possible with Ulysses for Mac, but you can download themes from our Ulysses Style Exchange. There are currently over 60 customer-created themes available – we’re sure you’ll find something you like. If you own Ulysses for Mac and have iCloud enabled, your themes will get synced, so you can use them right away on every connected device.

Themes
A theme for every taste: Lucid, New Wave 85, Cursor Console and Redeye (from left to right)

Dark Mode

If you prefer to write with a light font on a dark background, Dark Mode is for you. This will automatically use the dark version of your current theme – every theme features a light and a dark version – but also switch the whole interface, including sidebars.

Dark Theme, Dark Sidebars

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Rebekka Honeit

Blog-curating writing maniac and public relations person. Loves coffee, chocolate cookies and literature. Finds peace in tweaking press copy.