Keyboard

The core idea of iA Writer is to write without taking your hands off the keys. Knowing how to use the keyboard efficiently greatly improves your performance with iA Writer. Here is our keyboard shortcut cheat sheet:

General Functions Format¹
New: ⌘N Heading 1: ⌘1
Close: ⌘W Heading 2: ⌘2
Save: ⌘S² Heading 3: ⌘3
Undo: ⌘Z Heading 4: ⌘4
Redo: ⇧⌘Z Heading 5: ⌘5
Copy: ⌘C Heading 6: ⌘6
Cut: ⌘X Unordered List: ⌘L
Paste: ⌘V Ordered List: ⇧⌘L
Select All: ⌘A Task List: ⌥⌘L
Find: ⌘F Mark Task Complete: ⌘.
Increase Text Size: ⌘- Emphasis (Italic): ⌘I
Decrease Text Size: ⌘- Importance (Bold): ⌘B
Show Library: ⌘E Add Link: ⌘K
Show Preview: ⌘R Add Footnote: ⌃⌘K
Night Mode: ⌃⌘N Clear Styles: ⌥⌘Del

¹ Works only when the cursor is in the document
² Your document edits are automatically saved frequently

1.6.1. iOS

Bluetooth Keyboards

You can turn an iPad or iPhone into a dedicated writing machine by pairing your device with an external Bluetooth keyboard.

By default this hides Apple’s on-screen keyboard and Writer’s Keyboard bar, but you can reveal them using the Bluetooth keyboard’s Eject button (top right, if present), or the keyboard maker’s equivalent shortcut (e.g. Fn+⌘5 for a Logitec in-cover keyboard). However, they’re generally not necessary, because you can use keyboard shortcuts. To pair:

  1. Press the keyboard’s power button to turn it on
  2. Go to SettingsBluetooth, and turn on Bluetooth
  3. Tap the keyboard that appears
  4. Enter the number code using the keyboard to pair

To show only the keyboard bar at the bottom of the screen: ⌥⌘T. In iA Writer for iOS you’d normally hide the on-screen keyboard to show more of your document, but this can hide the convenient Keyboard bar. To address this, iA Writer for iOS supports most of the keyboard shortcuts present in iA Writer for Mac (see below). The main exception is the function of the Esc key (caret in Search) that hides on-screen keyboard.

Use keyboard on a Mac and an iOS device in turn

You’ll need to “forget” the current keyboard pairing when you want to swap (if the currently paired device is still in range). To go from a Mac to an iOS device:

  1. On the Mac, go to System PreferencesBluetooth
  2. Click on the keyboard in the connected devices list
  3. Click the Minus icon at the bottom of the list to unpair
  4. Press the keyboard’s power button to turn it on
  5. On the iPad or iPhone turn on Bluetooth under SettingsBluetooth
  6. Tap the keyboard and pair

To go from an iOS device to a Mac:

  1. On the iPad or iPhone, go to SettingsBluetooth
  2. Tap the connected keyboard, and tap Forget this keyboard
  3. Press the keyboard’s power button to turn it on
  4. On the Mac go to System PreferencesBluetooth
  5. Click the Plus icon at the bottom of the device list
  6. Click on the keyboard and pair

1.6.2. Mac

Standard Navigation

  • Hold down Shift with any of these to create/extend a selection.
  • Previous/next word: ⌥← and ⌥→
  • Start/end of the line: ⌘← and ⌘→ (Also with )
  • Start/end of the document: ⌘↑ and ⌘↓ (Also with )

Punctuation (such as “smart” quotation marks)

Please see our knowledge base article Curly Quotes (the same keyboard shortcuts should work in iOS).

Diacritics and other “extended” characters

Please see our knowledge base article Typing special characters. If you have problems please refer to the keyboard’s instructions, or Apple’s support documentation for iPad and Mac.