plain text and WordPress

Here’s something I often find myself wanting to do: write plain-text files in a text editor using Markdown and then publish directly to WordPress. As far as I can tell, there’s only one way to do that on the Mac: Byword.

There are other apps that give you some of what I want: for instance, you can publish directly from MarsEdit, which is a great app, but it’s a full-scale blogging engine with a database, not an editor of simple text files, and while you can write there in Markdown, you don’t get syntax highlighting. iA Writer is a beautiful environment to write in — its bespoke typefaces (Mono, Duo, Quattro) really are a delight to the eyes — but when you’re ready to publish in WordPress it opens a draft in your default browser using WordPress’s horrifically ugly and user-unfriendly editing environment. And avoiding opening WordPress is one of my chief goals in life. Ulysses lets you publish directly to WordPress but it saves your files as weird little .ulysses packages, and while you can extract your text files from them, that’s a pain, and you can’t use your own file and folder structure.

As far as I can tell, on iOS Ulysses and Byword are the primary options for posting directly, and Byword only allows you to choose from five typefaces only, the single monospace option being Courier, and I don’t especially like Courier. I’ve been trying to do this in Drafts, through Drafts actions or Shortcuts or some combination thereof, and I’m sure someone with more skills than mine could make that happen, but to this point I have failed. Though I can post to micro.blog directly from Drafts, which is nice. But Drafts saves its files to a database. I want individual text files because you can open and edit them on any computer in a myriad of apps.

I’m writing this on my iPad in iA Writer, and I suppose that when I’m ready to publish I’ll open it in Byword and publish from there, but that’s a lame workaround. Given the ubiquity of WordPress, this ought to be easier.