New feature release: Exporting your novel

As any of you who have been following our journey over the last two years know, we build what our writers need. Mostly that consists of asking you to tell us which are the most important features to you in a novel-writing software, and as we get funding, building them. The next of those features is now yours. Exporting your novel into various formats, is here.

We have pushed code to the site that adds the option to export your novel as .docx (Microsoft Word, but also compatible with google docs), .pdf (not editable so good for sharing or getting a copy once your work is finished) and .odt which is an OpenDocument Format making it compatible with many word processors. You can export your novel from your “settings menu”.


This is the first release of exporting and as such has a couple of limitations which we could use your help with. Exporting also has a roadmap of additional pie-in-the-sky features we want to add when we get there. With most features that we release, like exporting, we will build them so that they work well, continue with other features and then come back round to them to improve them.Buy East Inflatables

Things we need your help to achieve

Special characters in .pdf

Turns out there aren’t that many great html->pdf libraries on the internet. Well, we are using jspdf which was the best we tested. If you help us dig out any issues, our work with it for Novlr is almost certainly going to improve it :) We then get the privilege of giving that back to the development community so that others can use the improvements for free.

The .pdf format produced has some limitations with converting special characters, for example, the true ellipses character (…), the double quotes that look like 66 and 99 and em dash (—). We convert these into their supported equivalents (ie, change curly double quotes into straight ones – “). We have done this for many characters but it is likely some have been missed – particularly accented or foreign letters. If you export your words and find special characters being stripped out, please let us know and we will add it to the exceptions list with an alternative supported character.

Support for .odt format

We export to 1.2 version of the .odt format so it will not work in older processors. It works in up-to-date processors and Google Drive for example. (with more funding we may backdate this functionality to older versions).

Future of exporting

We can’t continue improving Novlr without you. You can help by: telling every writer you know about Novlr; becoming a lifetime hero and making our year; or signing up to Novlr when we have the full product in autumn ($10/month subscription). If you help us grow and fund this, these are the things we want to be able to do with exporting:

  • Make pdfs look nicer, more book-y and with page numbers;
  • Auto-sync to Dropbox;
  • Auto-sync to Google Drive;
  • Publish to .epub.

Thank you

Novlr is still free and will be until we feel there are enough core features to release it as a full product. We are hoping that will be in Autumn. In the meantime we rely on lifetime heroes. Here are the incredible people who not only believe in us and what we’re doing but have put their money down to prove it and helped fund this feature by becoming a lifetime hero:

Charity Thomas · Brad Haakenson · Paul Swann · Benjamin Randall · Jo Hatcher · Rachel Moore  · Anonymous Funder

11 replies
  1. Jon
    Jon says:

    It would be awesome if the docx export had the paragraph indention set, and if italics exported. It’s really difficult to go through my entire document to find what should have been italicized.


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