Troy Patterson
About Me
Fri 26 Apr 2019
1:29 PM

Building a New Blogging System

I’ve mentioned previously that I was trying to use a simple txt formatting to my blog, but I found it resulted in poor formatting on Blot and also did nothing to simplify my process. I still had to upload to Dropbox manually and then go to Dropbox and move to the proper folder which automatically posts to the blog.

That was about the same number of steps as my previous system, but again resulted in poor formatting and having to make post edits to solve issues. I thought about trying the Paper app to edit files directly on Dropbox, but I use Dropbox only because it is the system Blot uses and not because I like using it.

This left me searching for a simple upload system, but hoping for one that works in Markdown. I tried Bear on iOS, but found the upload to Dropbox was not what I wanted. I guess I could have tried to build a workflow to save that, but preferred an approach that could work on iOS and MacOS.

This week I think I found my answer. I got back on Drafts made by Greg Pierce known as Agile Tortoise. I’ve used this app off and on since Drafts 4 (It’s currently Drafts 5). The system is basically a home for typing on iOS, but recently they released the Mac version and it’s amazing. Basically the system is where you can start anything.

You can draft a text message and if it suddenly is email length instead you can send it by email. Perhaps you have a quick note to type, but it becomes a task and want to put it in your todo app. Those are the easy options though. You can write your entire shopping list and have it put it in your shopping list each as their own checked item. You can input Calendar dates, save notes or make templates for other apps.

Something else I find great is you can make the app preset to save, trash or archive your drafts” after each item. If you make a shopping list and move to Things/Todosit you can make it archive that list incase you need to review later. Perhaps you send something to Messages to send to a friend, have text action delete that draft automatically.

Obviously I’m a big fan so why have I not always used Drafts? There is a subscription if you want your actions to be extra customizable (free version is fine for most, but not what I’m about to explain) and I was only scratching the surface of the app.

Once I had setup my sub to Drafts I was able to import a action that allowed saving to Dropbox and specifying a custom location (You can add the function to the free version, but not set the folder). This location is now set to my blot folder. So my workflow now is to start typing a post in my iPhone, iPad or Mac and then when it’s ready push it to Dropbox and it’s done. At this time Mac does not yet support actions, but uses iCloud sync so I can type in one place and pick it up later and then post from iOS.

I can see this being an influence in increasing my blogging since it makes it easier and a better place to store and sync my ideas and current content. I’ll see how it goes but hopefully I can start posting more on a regular basis again.