iA Writer is the productivity app every Apple user needs

iA Writer is the productivity app every Apple user needs

Image: iStock/scyther5 If you’re a Mac or iPad user who regularly drafts copy, authors reports, produces blog and social media posts or otherwise writes material professionally, iA Writer may be the most helpful application you didn’t know you need. This fact remains true even if all you usually compose are email messages, Google document notes and Microsoft Teams posts. What are the benefits and features of Markdown apps like iA Writer?

Because iA Writer uses Markdown, the lightweight markup language that simplifies formatting, you can write text that can be used in multiple locations — a common need when preparing product, service, advertising, marketing, technical and financial performance information. This means you don’t have to suffer repeated frustrations when importing your text within various applications (including Word, Pages and Adobe products), cloud programs (such as CRM , financial and ERP platforms) and web services (Ghost, Medium and WordPress among them).

iA Writer is not unique in that respect. Common features of popular Markdown applications include the ability to export to HTML, Microsoft Word, PDF and and rich text file formats, support for common Markdown language text-formatting code (such as single asterisks for italics, double asterisks for bold-face type and the pound symbol for headings), iCloud file-storage compatibility, Dark Mode support and cross-platform (Mac, iPad, iPhone and even Windows) compatibility. What are alternatives to iA Writer?

iA Writer includes all those capabilities, similar to competing products from Bear , Byword , MacDown , Marked 2 , Markdown Pro and Ulysses . But iA Writer’s combination of a simple-but-elegant user interface, an easily navigated organizer for locating and storing files, customizable menus, basic time-saving templates and optional focus elements that help improve writing help explain why I’m increasingly encountering other media mentions and authors admitting to a dependence on the app. iA Writer adds a unique blend of additional features in a way that genuinely assists the writing process.

SEE: Apple Silicon M1 Mac buying guide: 2021 iMac vs. 2020 MacBook Air vs. MacBook Pro vs. Mac mini (free PDF) (TechRepublic) How do I use iA Writer?

Writers, and professionals who must regularly draft text for work, know how easily distractions derail the process. iA Writer helps with that problem by encouraging and assisting writers with maintaining their focus. Although the program features simple menus and exponentially fewer options than, say, Microsoft Word, iA Writer’s Focus Mode ( Figure A ) makes concentrating on your writing and minimizing distractions automatic. Regardless, the program’s writing-focused features still provide a wealth of helpful options—automatic highlighting of unrecognized words, multiple exporting capabilities, PDF previews, common formatting choices, multiple view settings and seamless cloud storage integration to name but a few—that assist the writing, creative, operations, production and publishing processes.

Figure A iA Writer’s Focus Mode helps busy professionals resist distraction and keep their business writing on track. The app also assists in improving the actual quality of your writing. With the ability to quickly enable highlighting adjectives, nouns, adverbs, verbs and conjunctions in different colors […]

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