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Organize your files

The first level of organization that users might think of are folders to store multiple files. But iA Writer for Mac gives you more elaborated options to organize your documents.

Folders can be created easily from the File List with a Right clickNew Folder

Beyond this, the left grey panel of the Library (Organizer) allows you to create favourites, smart folders and access tags.

If you don’t see the Organizer, it could be that you have hidden it. You can hide and show it from ViewHide/Show Organizer.

The Organizer contains Locations, Favorites, Smart Folders, and Hashtags. Right-clicking any item in the Organizer pops up a context menu.


Favorites allow you to create quick bookmarks to your most-used files and folders.

To add a Favorite:

Smart Folders

Normal folders are static; Smart folders are dynamic. Which files are found in a Smart Folder depends on the rules which govern it. New files can find their way into a Smart Folder with no user interaction at all.

iA Writer comes by default with a single Smart Folder: Recents. This is a list of the 25 most recently used files, across the whole Library.

If you are using iA Writer with iCloud your Smart Folders stay in sync across iOS, iPadOS, and macOS devices.

When creating a Smart Folder, you will be prompted to choose the rules iA Writer will follow to select the files, either:

1) Paths

Parent path: contents of a specific folder. Ancestor paths: contents of a particular folder and all of its subfolders.

To enter the paths:

Tips: use the contextual menu in Library and Organizer to copy paths.

2) Search

Search works like a search engine. It’s optimized to be fast with a large number of files.

Search is available for:

Search supports the following queries:

Queries Matching files
.png when extension begins as .png*
“.m” when extension is m
text machine where name or text contain words that begin as text and machine
“text* machine” where name or text contain a phrase with a word that begins as text and a word machine
#priority where contain a hashtag that begins as text and a word #priority*
-microsoft word that don’t include microsoft but include word
[ ] that contain an incomplete task list item
[x] that contain a completed task list item
-# that don’t contain a hashtag
“#diary” that contain a hashtag #diary
^first where the first word of a name or a text is first*
time AND space where name or text contain words that begin as time and space
name:alice where name contains a word that begins as alice*
name:^”note” where name begins with a word note
time OR “space” with time or space
time NOT space with time but not space
NEAR(time space) where time and space are located with 10 or less words in-between
NEAR(time “space” “travel” 4) with time, space and travel with 3 or less terms in-between
(time AND life) OR “me” with time and life, or me


Another way to organize your thoughts without multiple folders is by using tags. We implemented the Twitter spec for hashtags as a starting point, being the most universal implementation.

To make a tag, write the # characters beside a word (no space, just like on Social Media). You will see your tag appearing on the Organizer under the Hashtag category. When you click on it, it will show you in the File List all the documents containing this tag.

We implemented the Twitter spec for hashtags as a starting point, being the most universal implementation.

Note that, just like in Twitter, including some characters like a dash in the tag will make it invalid:

Valid tags

#Alice, #2Alice

Invalid tags

#-Alice, #/Alice, #2 Alice, #Alice-Rabbit (only “Alice” will be recognized as a tag, “Rabbit” will be ignored)


Content Blocks

Include images, comma separated tables, text files and code as blocks of content in your documents.

Organize your files

Folders, favourites, hashtags and more, discover all the ways to organize your documents in Writer.


Connect, browse, and rediscover your writing.


Writer for Windows comes with two powerful features for working with long or complex documents.

URL Schemes

Open iA Writer from other applications on both macOS and iOS, and perform specific actions on opening.

Navigate your files

Create, search and navigate through your documents in the Library.