Make Ulysses your own

Use cat icons in the writing app, because why not.


The ultimate writing app


Ulysses is a powerful text editor, but an app doesn’t feel too cosy until you make it your own. Here’s how to customise the app and keep it for your eyes only.

Find cats in Ulysses

Groups in Ulysses use stacks of paper icons as default, but did you know there are over 200 hand-picked icons you can choose from? Right-click on a group and select Edit from the menu. In the dialogue that appears, click on the current icon on the right hand side.

Now go to town with the diverse options, from a letter (for a group of email drafts) to an alarm (projects with a deadline) to an extra-terrestrial (for alien ideas) to cats (because they’re cute).

There are more than 200 icons for you to choose from. Have fun!

Keep your secrets

If you keep a secret diary in Ulysses or are awfully shy about writing your first novel, you can protect your words from busybodies using a password or Touch ID. Launch Preferences from the Ulysses menu, click on the Privacy tab and enable Password Lock.

Ulysses can lock others out of the app, but you should know that sheets can still be found with a search in Spotlight.

(You should know, however, that while a password locks others out of Ulysses, nosy parkers can still use Spotlight to find and preview your Ulysses documents.)

Set your own shortcuts

Keyboard shortcuts are an easy way to format text. For example, the shortcut Command-B wraps words or phrases with two asterisks to make them bold. Similarly, you can type double asterisks (**) at the start and end of words or phrases to bold them. Ulysses comes with default markup shortcuts, but you can create your own and change them in the Preferences window.

You can change shortcuts and edit styles in Preferences to suit your fancy.

Launch Preferences from the Ulysses menu or press Command-Comma and go to the Markup tab. Double-click on a definition to see its details, including its default tag (or markup) and use the upper right field to customise a shortcut.

Some definitions offer a choice between markup tags. For example, Strong can be set to trigger with either two asterisks or two underscores and Emphasis can be set to a single asterisk or underscore.


    The ultimate writing app