Agenda for Aspiring Writers

Hi! Im using Agenda for a story that im writing. I use projects and categories for each character and part of a story. I like to keep things colour coded. Im using Pages to write, and keep Agenda on the side to remind me of facts. Does anyone else have good ways to keep notes more organized for each character, and is there any advice from anyone else using Agenda for book writing?

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Awesome! One obvious way you could highlight the characters is by using the @John / @(John Doe) tags, which you can then use to make smart overviews that will then show all notes containing a particular character for example. Similarly you can use tags to mark certain scenes or locations for example.


That makes sense, @mekentosj . I suppose using @ is better than the "find” shortcut.

That will probably make my scenes easier to put together since my summary notes are so long. I also just make new categories for my character sketches, but i havent used tags much. I just started using Agenda, and i really like how it works! Thanks!

Here’s a thought. You could date the note for each scene!


While I applaud your initiative, this is not the best tool for story writing. You can more easily manage your story using Scrivener and Aeon Timeline.

Id have to respectfully disagree with that actually :slight_smile:
I myself am working on a series of novels when Im not at work, or chasing my kids around the house, and Ive used Agenda in the past for my writing notes - even while using Scrivener. In fact, anything I see as a project, I find myself turning to Agenda to for storing notes, ideas.

Some (like myself) might prefer to keep their notes (whether work, personal, creative projects like writing, etc) all in one place, and Agenda is versatile enough - if it fits your mindset.

Of course, Scrivener is a specialized tool that is wonderfully capable of keeping notes on writing projects as well. But I think how the note taking experience is fulfilled is heavily user-dependent.

I’ve dabbled with Notebooks app extensively for this purpose as well (fantastic and syncs with Scrivener), Craft, and Obsidian as well, each had its advantages and disadvantages.


Good to know, @freytim! I have tried Scrivener but I’m not liking the layout or the experience. So far I’ve been satisfied with using Agenda- but we’ll see. The schedules for assigned notes are a great feature!

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I think this is a crucial ‘feature’ of Agenda for me! Ideas for different projects and tasks (work, home maintenance, hobbies etc) come to me at different times and places - when I’m sitting down to tackle them, but also when I’m walking, taking a break, working on something else.

The beauty of Agenda is that I don’t need to decide which app to use - any and all notes go into Agenda. This reduces friction, cognitive overload and distraction.

I think of Agenda as an old fashioned paper note book, where everything gets written - or at leasts starts. But the huge added advantage that after (or even during) “capture” the ideas can be reorganised and searched. A bit like ripping all the pages to do with Project X out of the paper note book and putting them in a binder with dividers for the project (which I used to do in the old days).


Interesting you say that - I started off in Scrivener and eventually moved away myself for very similar reasons. Im now using Pages much like yourself! Easier to sync, works beautifully and seamlessly with ipad and icloud, and great export options.
Im interested in giving Campfire a try when that comes out soon.

Im playing around now with @mekentosj ’s suggestion for smart overviews - that actually is quite handy for separating characters / timelines / reference materials


@LofiLoki and Agenders, currently I have the same predicament about these writing-tools. I think Agenda is a great tool and you can do many things that you just can’t do with specific apps for notes, stories, scientific papers (and other long documents…). I particularly use Agenda for the entire organization of all my manuscripts: meetings (if is a coauthored work), nest-timeline and main tasks (and organize the progress, reminders, and son on in other apps, I recommend TickTick), work plans, organization of my literature reviews (my detailed notes are in Bear notes…but, I thinking about using Agenda for this, so I can have almost everything in just one App).

Uysses app is also an interesting tool for writing, no so powerful like Scrivener but you can easily work your novels, tales, or scientific research. Because of the comments here, I’m going to try Scrivener (free trial) and… I’ll see what happens.


I was wondering if there were any other writers here! As a writer new to the app, I’ve been using Agenda, not for writing, but for the business of writing.

I track the progress of writing projects and link to reminders to keep myself productive. I attach writings and research here.

I take notes at writing conferences and workshops, linked to their calendar events.

I have a section for reading notes where I put annotations of books I’m reading. I can add the original pdf, if any, as a linked document, send annotations from Apple Books etc.

I have a section about various publications I’m interested in submitting to (I’m interested in connecting these to the Contacts app).

I have a folder for idea-generating notes with tags based on genre, format, etc.

In my idea-generating notes (free writing, journaling, etc), if I come up with a good idea, I tack on a reminder and send it to one of my writing lists in Apple Reminders

Sometimes I add a date if I think it would be good for a particular submission deadline (and link it to the publication’s note) Sometimes I just add to an easily accessible list of ideas I can pick from when I’m ready to write something new.

Have not tried Agenda for writing. I use Scrivener for long forms and Apple Notes for poetry and other short forms. Interested to see how Agenda develops and how else I’ll be able to use it!


Good to know Agenda is working well enough for what I plan on using it for, @AnneW! I also had used it so far for research. Thanks for the ideas!


I use Agenda much as @AnneW does. The app is flexible enough to be responsive in terms of what you need to say and connective to how we work, schedule and remind ourselves. The business of getting on with things.

It is, after a bit of a learning curve where its ways become clear, pleasurable to use. So I’m not surprised some writers use it to write but I think there are other tools better suited for long form work.