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Working with Text

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InDesign can do everything from serving as your primary word processor to importing text from other programs to automatically applying specialized formatting. In InDesign, text is placed inside text frames or it flows along type paths, both of which can be any size or shape. Text frames and type paths can be linked (or threaded) to each other to flow text through a document.

When it comes to formatting text, you have a variety of options for applying character and paragraph formats, including styles for automated formatting. InDesign also provides expert options for setting tabs and creating bulleted and numbered lists. For word processing, InDesign provides a story editor, spell check features, and search-and-replace functions.

In this chapter you'll learn how to create text frames and type paths, and then how to add, format, and edit text.

#17 Creating Text Frames

Most of the text you see in an InDesign layout—headlines, articles, figure captions, ad copy—is contained by invisible, rectangular text frames. You can, however, draw text frames of any shape, and you can use the master text frame you specify in the New Document dialog box.

Drawing Text Frames

To create a rectangular text frame, select the Type tool typetool_new_2.jpg on the toolbox. Click and drag to draw a text frame. Use the rulers and values in the Control palette to judge the size and placement of the text frame ( Figure 17a ).


Figure 17a While dragging with the Type tool to create a rectangular text frame, you can use the rulers and Control palette to judge its size and placement.

To create a round or variable-shape text frame, use any of the drawing tools to create a frame (see #49 for more information). Then, simply click it with the Type tool to enter text ( Figure 17b ). You can also click any frame using the Selection tool or Direct Selection tool and choose Object > Content > Text to convert it to a text frame.


Figure 17b To place text in a round text frame, draw an elliptical graphics frame with the Ellipse Frame toolEllipse Frame tool, click it with the Type tool, and then start typing.

Using the Master Text Frame

If you're importing long blocks of text onto pages—for a book chapter or annual report, for example—you don't have to draw a text frame on each page. You can automatically place a text frame on each document page by checking Master Text Frame in the New Document dialog box (File > New > Document). The values in the Columns and Margins areas control the number of columns in the master text frame, the amount of space between columns, and the placement on the page ( Figure 17c ).


Figure 17c Checking Master Text Frame in the New Document dialog box automatically places a text frame on document pages according to the values in the Columns and Margins areas.

To enter text in the master text frame on document pages, select the Type tool and Command+Shift-click (Mac OS) or Ctrl+Shift-click (Windows) on the text frame.

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