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Your own blank canvas, ready to be painted with words. This is where the magic happens. You’ll spend most of your time here.

Once you’ve selected your file in the Library or launched a blank doc, you can get right down to business. Here’s a look at the Editor.

Title Bar

The title bar features a Back button which allows you navigate (backwards) to the Library. You can long-press this to quickly navigate up your folder structure.

By tapping the file name in the bar you can access file options like moving and renaming. You can also browse for backups of the file or revert to prior versions (when working in iCloud).

At the right, you can enable the Preview by clicking the ► (play) button.

Bottom Bar

If you dismiss the keyboard you’ll gain access to the Bottom Bar:

Here you’ll see options for Quick Search, Editor options, sharing and a button to make a new document.

Quick Search

Editor Options

Set your ideal font size using the A A A buttons.

Toggle focus, style and stat options you’d like to see while you work. You can always tap AA to quickly toggle options on or off.

Switch between Light and Dark modes. Note this option is not available when you’ve configured the Appearance setting to System.

Click Configure Editor for access to even more Editor settings.

Sharing is caring! In addition to exporting and print options, you can tap Share to send your work via iOS Share sheet. For more details on sharing from Writer don’t forget to check out: Export, Share, Print

Keyboard Bar

In standard configuration (iOS 16 shown) you’ll see a row of keys above the on-screen keyboard.

– Press the loup for Quick Search. Press and hold to show Find and Replace function.
– Left and Right directional arrows move the caret one place in selected direction
– Dismiss Keyboard will hide the on-screen keyboard giving access to the bottom bar
– Undo/Redo inputs. Redo key will be replaced with a ‘Go To’ button when the caret is within or adjacent to any link
– Lightning Menu. Add your favorite formatting functions here so they are just a tap away!

Double-tap Shift (⇧) key:
– Indent (or outdent) current line or list item
– Move Text. Current line or selected block of text can be moved up or down.

Tweaking Editor Settings ==move to end?==

Writer is designed to get you up and writing as quickly as possible. Most users will simply launch Writer and begin typing.

There are however some settings you can use to tweak the Editor to your own tastes. You can configure these in Settings → Editor or by tapping the AA key and selecting Configure Editor

Focus Modes

Focus Mode (scope): You can choose either Sentence or Paragraph focus. You can also toggle Typewriter (scrolling), which keeps the cursor centered in the middle of the Editor.

Syntax: Lets you set up Syntax Highlighting to work for you. Simply toggle on/off the parts of speech you’d like to see highlighted in your text. You can learn more about this special feature here: Syntax Highlight

Style Check: Lets you configure Style Check to your own tastes. Selecting Custom Patterns opens a new window to allow you to add your own patterns. To learn more about this unique feature please see: Style Check

Text and Appearance

iA font and line length can be set here. You can also set how highlighting and completed tasks will look. (Both of these settings also affect how these are rendered when using built-in templates)



Because some Markdown syntax (e.g. code blocks) requires specific indentation, Writer allows you to specify you preferences for how indentation is handled. Here is a breakdown of the settings.

Indent text using: Select between using a single tab or 4 spaces for indentation when issuing the tab key.

Tab key:

Indents – Using tab anywhere within a paragraph will indent the entire paragraph to make a codeblock or create a nested list (sub) item when used in a list.

Inserts Tab – A tab is inserted at the cursor.

Tab width: Allows you to set how wide a tab appears anywhere in the Editor (measured in number of spaces). This does not change the number of spaces used.

Indent width: Number of spaces used (width) to indent when Indent text using: is set to Spaces.

Note that when Spaces is set to 2, indenting paragraphs will not form a codeblock and indenting list items will not create subitems. Markdown syntax requires 4+ spaces for both syntaxes

Wrapped line indent includes:

Whitespace – Wrapped lines include leading whitespace preserving indentation. When disabled, wrapped lines are return flush to left margin. Note that indentation here has no effect on output in Preview, print or exported docs.

Markdown block markers – Wrapped lines are indented to line up with the text above, but not the Markdown block markers (i.e list markers/bullets)

Spelling and Auto-completion

Writer for iOS uses iOS system Autocorrect functionality.

You can enable/disable this in app by toggling Check Spelling on or off.

You can also enable Smart Quotes or Smart Dashes to take advantage of replacements for:

Typed Replaced with
'' ‘’
" " “ “

In case you missed it, don’t forget to check out our article on Writer’s Library. Or, keep moving forward and learn about Preview!