I’m a recent convert to Ulysses. I had been using Sublime Text for years to manage long-form text files. But I had also been using nvALT for shorter, spur-of-the-moment text files. It worked. And I had no issue managing the two different systems.
But with all the hype lately and a discussion about Ulysses on the Pro side I figured it couldn’t hurt to at least give it a try. There seemed to be enough interesting work going on with it and enough potential use cases to at least warrant a trial run. And in the end, I converted both my long-form and short-term text files into one system with Ulysses.
I can’t say it was a hard decision. It had more to do with ease of use and a clean, unified interface between both iOS and Mac platforms. I like to capture ideas for things to write about or random, yet temporary, ideas lists. But I never know which device I’ll be using to do that and it needs to be accessible from both. At the same time, I’ve been looking for a decent replacement for Editorial on my phone. Because it’s pretty obvious Editorial isn’t planning to stay up to date and frankly it’s not simple to create new files there.
I haven’t used any of the fancy features like goals, gluing sheets, and attachments at all. It’s purely the ease of entering and finding the files I want that I have me switched. I’m pretty easy to please… I think.
With that out of the way, here’s a look at how I’m tactically using it:
For years now, I’ve been using a four bucket folder system for managing my writing. This is seen as the 1-4 numbered groups above. The nice thing about Ulysses is that I can easily drag and drop the file between them to change the status.
Temporary ideas lists
These usually end up in the Text group. But I create a new sheet for the thing and then collect ideas for it. I rarely delete these when I’m done. It doesn’t bother me to have these floating around and I’m always searching for what I want anyway.
Every time I start a new book, I create a new sheet for it and collect my thoughts there. But I’m lazy and wrote a Workflow that does the heavy lifting for me (coming to Pro members soon.)
I often collect notes for my three podcasts to talk about or mention. This is where those go. I don’t flag them in any way to a specific show. But I usually pay attention to this list while recording and mention things that are relevant as they happen.
Because I like quotes. Whether it’s Twitter, a book, or a friend, I write these little gems here.
Sometimes I don’t know what it is. But I feel like I should keep it around.
Once I week I review myself with a series of questions (coming to Pro members soon) that are geared towards a realistic understanding of where I am headed and how well I’m doing to get there. It’s hard. But well worth it.
That’s how I’m using it. Nothing too fancy, I know. And I haven’t delved into the depths of goals yet, though I want to.
So here’s the question: how are you using Ulysses that’s different (or the same) as this?