1.0.4 • Public • Published


Create beautiful LaTeX documents with Markdown

WriTeX gives you a workflow for creating print documents (PDF) super-easily; the power of LaTeX with the simplicity of Markdown.


Install the WriTeX CLI globally using npm:

npm install -g writex

WriTeX makes use of Pandoc and LaTeX. Download and install Pandoc from here.. LaTeX comes in different distributions; I recommend TeX Live for Linux, MacTeX for Mac OS X, and MiKTeX for Windows.

Scaffolding a new project

Besides the WriTeX CLI, you will also need a WriTeX template for your document. Templates are installed via npm and you can find a list of available templates here.

At the time being, project scaffolding is not yet implemented. However, you can manually install the template and copy the config file into the project directory as follows (using the writex-article template as an example):

  1. Install the template npm install --save-dev writex-template
  2. Copy config file cp node_modules/writex-template/writex.yaml ./

Writing and Configuring

If your project is set up, you can start writing. All your content belongs in Markdown files with the .md suffix. The filenames should be prefixed by a number, so that they are ordered properly (otherwise, WriTeX will not compile them into the \begin{document} ... \end{document} area of your LaTeX document):

- 0-introduction.md
- 1-research.md
- 2-design.md
- 3-implementation.md
- 4-evaluation.md
- 5-conclusion.md
- references.bib
- writex.yaml


You can configure some basic parameters of your project in the writex.yaml file. Some parameters are necessary for every WriTeX project, some are specific to a certain template. The values under document are used by the template to fill certain fields. They depend very much on the used template; an article needs different metadata than, for example, a letter.

An exemplary WriTeX config file:

template: article
abstract: false
bibtex: false
engine: xelatex
  author: Arthur Authory
  date: \today
  title: A splendid article
  subtitle: How to write a headline that means absolutely nothing

In this example, both document and abstract are specific to the template (writex-article). All other parameters are universal WriTeX parameters.


For the time being, WriTeX supports BibLaTeX bibliographies via biber. You can enable them in the config file, setting bibtex to true. The BibLaTeX file must be named references.bib. WriTeX will automatically take care of the proper compilation: latex->biber->latex->latex.

This is intented to become more flexible in the future, with support for bibtex and configurable filenames as well.

Special content

There are some occasions where your template provides space for special content that does not belong into the regular flow of your document. One such example is an abstract, as implemented by the writex-article template.

Special content must not be prefixed by a number, so that it is not included in the \begin{document} ... \end{document} area of your LaTeX document.

Example: To enable the use of an abstract in the writex-article template, you have to create a file abstract.md, fill it with your abstract, and set the abstract field in the writex.yaml config file to true.

For information on the special content that is supported by your template, refer to your template's README.


So you are all set, a first draft is written and you want to see how your PDF looks?

Simply run WriTeX in your project folder:


It will run through all the steps necessary and spit out your PDF in the end.

Watch and compile

WriTeX can watch for changes to your Markdown files and compile the new version of your PDF document automatically, which is quite convenient:

writex watch

Future plans

I've got quite a bit planned for WriTeX, mostly for my own convenience:

  • writex-acm, a template for creating ACM research papers
  • writex-book, a template based on KOMA-Script's scrbook document type
  • writex-tvooo-book, a variation of writex-book with custom fonts and a custom title page, glossaries etc.
  • writex-tvooo-article, a variation of writex-article with custom fonts
  • Scaffolding of your own WriTeX templates
  • Scaffolding of a project using an existing template
  • A little website with a nice, illustratory explanation
  • Maybe offer the whole process online; on-the-fly PDF generation from pasted Markdown, with your chosen template



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