I would like to view my drafts in the preview pane, not as a popup

Sending Mail with Drafts

Drafts is a great place to, well, draft emails. Using Drafts allows you to use a convenient, configurable editor for a consistent writing experience and it’s easy to lớn send gmail directly within the app - or by integrating with third buổi tiệc ngọt Mail clients. Even write with Markdown and sover as rich HTML email. This article covers some of these basics of using gmail in Drafts và different methods available.

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Mail Action Step

Drafts ships with a default Mail action, in the “Basic” action group. This action is configured lớn use the first line of the draft as the subject line, and the remaining text as the body of the message. When used, a Mail mesage will pop up with the text already filled in. You add a recipient và tap “Send” và your mail is on the way.

On iOS, it will use APIs lớn skết thúc via Apple’s Mail app. On the Mac, it uses mailto: URLs to open a message in your mặc định gmail client.

This is only the beginning of what is possible with the Mail action step. Multiple actions can be mix up using Mail action steps, each configured to have sầu pre-defined To, CC & BCC recipients, stoông chồng subject lines, or toàn thân templates which automatically add signatures or other reused content and formatting. So it’s easy to mix up, for example, a group email action to lớn send khổng lồ your project team or family.

Configuring Mail kích hoạt Steps

If you are new to lớn actions, you can get familiar with the basics of editing actions in our Create an kích hoạt screencast, that’s a little beyond this article, but below shows a sample configuration of a Mail action step.


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There are more detailed explanations of the fields in the Mail action step documentation. Each of these fields support Drafts template tags, including the recipient fields, so it is possible lớn dynamically insert content.

The basics are:

Recipient fields (To, CC, BCC): These fields can each have sầu one or more email addresses (separated by commas). If values are configured for these fields, they will be pre-filled in the Mail window that opens, leaving you only to lớn tap “Send” khổng lồ finish the email. Use the (+) button lớn select email addresses from your tương tác menu.Advanced Options:Skết thúc as HTML: If on, this will treat the output of the template as HTML & create a rich-text gmail. This means that the template should have HTML tags in it. This is typically used along with Markdown, see section below for details.Skết thúc in background: Used to lớn send the email via web service without the requirement of opening a pđánh giá of the message. Because these message come “From” a generic address, it’s best for action which tin nhắn khổng lồ your own email address as a reminder, or similar.

Markdown Mail

Markdown is a text-to-HTML conversion tool that lets you write in simple plain text markup & easily convert it lớn HTML. Drafts has great Markdown support, & it works nicely with Mail steps khổng lồ create rich-text formatted emails.


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To get started, install the Markdown Mail sample action from the kích hoạt Directory. This action uses a standard Mail action step, with two configuration changes:

The “Sover as HTML” option is enabled.The toàn thân template is changed to %%<>%%. The double-percent syntax is a feature of the that tells Drafts to lớn treat any text between the double-percents as Markdown, & convert it to lớn HTML.

Using this step, it makes it quiông xã và easy khổng lồ send professional, rich-text email without a lot of fiddling with text selections in Mail.app.

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Because this relies on APIs that are not available on macOS, the basic implementation of Markdown Mail is not compatible with the Mac. We vì offer a không tính phí helper ứng dụng that enables this functionality on the Mac, called Mail Assistant. If you are interested in sending Markdown mail on the Mac, get more information & sample actions in our Mail Assistant article.

Mailto: URLs

With the introduction of iOS 14, it is now possible lớn have sầu third các buổi party gmail clients configured as your mặc định application to handle mailto URLs. Because of this change, it might be desirable lớn have sầu mail actions which explicitly use the mailkhổng lồ URL structure lớn send on both iOS và Mac.

We have posted an example mailto-based action.

The biggest downside to lớn this approach is that you must leave Drafts khổng lồ complete the sending process.

Gmail and Outlook kích hoạt Steps

In addition to the “Mail” action step, there are dedicated steps available to lớn skết thúc background gmail via Gmail or Microsoft Outlook.com/Live/O365 accounts. These steps are configured very similar to the Mail step as covered above, but they do not open a window before sending the gmail. As a result these action steps must include at least one valid recipient email to send properly.

The primary advantage of these steps is khổng lồ allow a background email (without additional “Send” popup step) to be sent “From” your actual address with one of these services.

Third Party Thư điện tử Apps

In addition lớn direct Mail support, Drafts can work with many third-các buổi party tin nhắn clients directly. There are two comtháng ways lớn send tin nhắn using third tiệc ngọt iOS email clients: Share extensions và URL schemes.

Many gmail client apps provide share extensions that can accept text và can be used via the Drafts Share action. When provided, these extensions will generally allow you khổng lồ send an email, & use the text as the body toàn thân of the email - requiring you to fill in the recipients và subject - just as the built-in iOS Mail chia sẻ option.

Many popular gmail client apps also provide support for integration via custom URL schemes. The format of the required URLs and the features they support varies between clients, but most allow sending subject & body toàn thân text. Some example actions are available in our Action Directory for most popular third buổi tiệc ngọt clients, like:

Scripting Mail

This introduction doesn’t go deep enough to talk about scripting, but be aware that feature described above sầu can also be accessed via the Mail script object in script steps - open all sorts of advanced possibilities. Scripting interfaces are also available lớn sover via Gmail & Outlook accounts directly - allowing use cases lượt thích looping over a danh mục of email addresses và sending the same email individually to each as a “To:” recipient.

Comtháng Questions

Can I sover in the background using my own Mail accounts?Yes, if you use Gmail or Outlook integrated accounts. If a mail step uses the “Send in Background” option, it is sent using a web service. Mail.ứng dụng does not tư vấn background sending.

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Can I pre-configure the “from” address in the Mail window if I have multiple accounts?No, sadly. This is not an option provided by Apple in the APIs that work with Mail.phầm mềm. It can be changed in the window that pops up by tapping on the from line.

Other Sample Actions

A search for “Mail” in the kích hoạt Directory will always turn up some other interesting ideas for customizing mail actions - a few choice examples:


Chuyên mục: Mail