It’s been a while since I posted anything here. I’ve been busy with my upcoming novel, Stone Cold. But I felt compelled to write this article about Ulysses, the writing solution for Mac and iOS that just keeps on improving with age.

I’ve written about Ulysses before and extolled its many virtues. You can check out the article here. But the developers have added a ton of useful new features and made lots of improvements to the way the program works since then.

So today I am going to focus on a few of the key changes that make this software even more invaluable to me as a writer.

iPhone support

This is a big one. Ulysses was previously available on Mac and iOS, but only on the iPad. This was great, but if I was away from my desk, working on the iPad version, it limited me to syncing my work over iCloud when I got back home. The universal release on both iPad and iPhone now means I can write on the move, using my iPhone’s mobile data.

I’m not sure iI would want to write a whole chapter of my book using Ulysses on the iPhone, but if I wanted to I could. The writing experience is excellent – as smooth and fast as it is on iPad and Mac – a real testament to the developer’s ability to design practical, useful and powerful software for writers.

The iPhone UI works a treat – I can preview my work, export to all the same formats I can on Mac and iPad, and use all of the same incredibly powerful Markup features Ulysses offers. I can add goals, images, notes, switch the order of scenes, backup my work. Plus, if you own both devices, the universal license means you only pay once.

I’m currently writing this article on my iPhone. Check out the pictures below of how the interface looks.

The user interface of Ulysses on iPhone

Ulysses iPhone Toolbar

Adding goals and attachments in Ulysses iPhone

Export to DOCX format

Another fantastic addition. Although it comes at a price – the DOCX format replaces the previous RTF export function. There’s a reason for this though. Some time ago Apple mysteriously dropped RTF support within its Pages word processor. A crazy move in a lot of people’s opinion, including mine. So Ulysses’ switch to The DOCX format means rich text exports open easily in Pages as well as Microsoft Word.

Check out the various formats Ulysses can now export to below:

Exporting in Ulysses for iPhone

Export draft articles direct to WordPress

Ulysses added support for publishing direct to Medium, the blogging website, some time ago, but it’s a feature I never used. I have WordPress on my hosted site, which means the ability to send posts direct to it in draft form is a feature I’ve been waiting for, for quite some time.

In version 2.6, still only available in Beta, The Soulmen have added it (as you can see from the image above). I’m part of the Beta testing programme so I’m currently trying out the WordPress upload feature. I’m not going to review version 2.6 as it isn’t a final release, but so far I’m loving it. I like the fact that I can post an article to my blog quickly and easily, including uploading images, all straight from my iPhone, iPad or Mac. There are other text editors with the ability to do this. But now I can keep all of my writing within Ulysses, and importantly I can do everything on the go.

In fact I’ll be posting this article as a draft post to WordPress once I’ve finished writing it.

WordPress preview on iPhone

Publishing as draft to WordPress

Version 2.6 also features quick open – a feature previously only available on the Mac – which allows you to find a piece of writing within Ulysses quickly and efficiently. It works very well on iOS.

Conclusion

Ulysses is an app that impressed me from the moment I started using it. It’s developers are passionate about their software and constantly looking at delivering a writing experience which makes writers’ lives easier and more productive. With the release of version 2.5, and the upcoming version 2.6, Ulysses continues to stand out from the crowd in so many ways.

I recommend you check it out if you haven’t already done so. It is available as a trial version from www.ulyssesapp.com.

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