Quick entry/quick capture GTD workflow on drafts?

Hi all,
I’ve heard that many use drafts for quick entry rather than their task manager.

I’m curious whether you keep one daily note for the day with running entries or do you create a new draft for each thought, idea and/or task?

I gués the analogy would be scraps of paper or a daily page in a notebook.

I’m trying to utilize this to clean up my OmniFocus, but can’t quite sort out the workflow. Do you have many notes with one thought then process each? This is what the drafts default setting suggests…

Thank you

If I think of something I need to do and don’t have time to enter it into OF or Things (I am currently migrating to Things since it better suited for my lighter needs), I enter it in Drafts. Each item throughout the day gets it own Draft since I am just going for quickly getting it written down before I forget. Then ideally, I sit down at the end of the day and make proper entries into OF/Things.

If I had one sheet in Drafts for capture, the added step of finding that draft is too time consuming. If it’s getting entered in Drafts, it’s because I am not in a position where I have a lot of time. I just need to get it out of my head and written somewhere.

This is the basic pattern I follow as well. On Mac, I launch it via Alfred and keep it in the dock of all my iOS devices. Oddly, when I first started using Drafts, I had a bit of problem working it into any sort of workflow until I decided that it would be my “inbox” across all my devices. It’s one of those apps you have to go “all-in” with as a text entry point to really appreciate.

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I would suggest using the OmniFocus Inbox. This type of quick entry is exactly what it is for.

On iOS / iPadOS it is a two-tap operation to open a new item, or a one-tap if using the widget.

On the Mac you can configure a keyboard shortcut that allows the use of Quick Entry from anywhere.

If your target app is OmniFocus, it would follow GtD best practice to enter items there directly, rather than managing them twice. It will also give you higher confidence that all your entries are safely captured in your trusted system.

This action in Drafts will send each line with a certain prefix to OmniFocus in a link. It works brilliantly as it allows you to maintain the same flow and then process to OmniFocus at the end. This will work nicely if you use one page or one per event (eg meeting).

Importantly you can change the prefix to whatever works for you really easily. Just change the top line.

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Agile Tortoise provides many Integration Guides for working with Drafts and different task managers:

Plus other note takers, etc.

Browse the Drafts Action Directory for more options – all of which are modifiable for personal needs:

Great action. It can also be changed to work with other task management apps that support URL schemes – I’m thinking of Todoist, Things, etc.

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Thanks everyone for your input. From what I see, and from the action presented by @ChrisEdwards, I see that both approaches seem to be equally good options and may be useful in different contexts (i.e. capture on the go vs one big brain dump). Will have to play with this but realize that Drafts really is just an inbox that needs to be cleared just like the others.


Worth noting that by default Drafts opens a blank page when you open it (after x minutes), so the developer was probably thinking of the app as one idea to one page, but don’t let that stop you!

Maybe try each for a week and see how you go.

Personally I have many conversations about the same topic but mixed in with conversations about other topics, so having a page per day doesn’t work for me as I want my notes by topic, not by time. I could, but don’t, have one page per topic (I have too many topics), so I have a note per conversation / idea / etc. and then file them into Bear with tags. This actually isn’t working for me and I’m looking for an alternative way to do it (I never go back to Bear to see my combined notes).