Using Drafts App With Obsidian: What’s The Big Deal?

I didn’t understand what the big deal was about Drafts App until yesterday.

I use the 2021 iPad Mini as my main content consumption device. And while it’s great for consuming content, if you want to avoid a ton of copy/paste and app switching, it’s quite difficult to save links and articles into Obsidian, as part of a “read it later” strategy.

And copy/paste is the last thing I want to be doing on a device with small screen real estate. I’ve been looking for a frictionless way to save links and articles into Obsidian, and I finally found it.

I still find myself dreaming that Obsidian will eventually have its own share extension for Safari, but Drafts makes link capture a delight.

After re-installing it yesterday, and upgrading to pro, it finally became clear why this app is genius. Here’s why:

Share Extension. From any Apple device, you can use the share extension to share a link directly to drafts without having to switch applications.

Offline Apple Watch dictation. This is a game changer. I go on long morning walks and often leave my iPhone behind. When inspiration strikes, I can dictate a note to Drafts directly from my watch, and when I get back to my desk, it connects to my phone and syncs. A great way to capture dictated notes while offline.

Customizable Actions. I’ve created custom “action” templates that formats my saved links and append them into the appropriate location in my Obsidian PKM with the appropriate metadata and tags. I’ve created different templates for articles, tools, books to read etc. The action does all the filing for you!

Friction by design. This may sound counterintuitive, but it’s a huge benefit in my opinion. Because Drafts acts as a middle man between your link capture and Obsidian, it creates a moment of pause. You have to manually run the action steps that send the captured links into Obsidian. I batch process anything I’ve captured in drafts once a day as part of my shutdown routine.

Prior to sending into Obsidian, I ask myself the following:

  • Is this worthy of my attention?
  • What are my intentions for keeping this information?
  • Will I write about it?
  • Is it actionable?
  • Will it be valuable to share with others?

If I struggle during this mental exercise, I’ll often delete the draft to prevent my knowledge system from becoming a runaway mess.

I’ve been reading about Drafts for years, but never really had a use for it until now.

As an Obsidian user, it’s only taken 24 hours to essentially become an indispensable part of my daily workflow.

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