Software

How to keep a continued message from getting lost in linked boxes

If you're using Word to create an electronic or print newsletter, you might be working harder than necessary. Word's desktop publishing features are basic and getting content to flow from one area of a page to another or even from page to page can be troublesome. Adding and deleting text or graphics is especially problematic.

Linked text boxes are a great way to control the flow. One box spills its contents into another, regardless of their location. Simply insert two text boxes and then determine the flow of text. Right-click the border of the first box and choose Create Text Box Link. The cursor will turn into a small cup pouring our letters. Click inside the second text box to create a link between the two text boxes.

Return to the first box and start entering text. When the box is full, Word will push the excess text into the second box. You don't have to interrupt your typing. Word automatically moves the cursor to the second box as you type. When you edit the text, Word automatically adjusts the flow from box to box—without any help from you.

If you link two text boxes and they're not on the same page, you'll probably want to display a "continued on page x" message at the bottom of the first text box. To do so, drop a small text box into the first where you want the continued message to appear—probably in the bottom right corner. Text you enter into the larger text box wraps around the message and wraps right into the linked text box.

The smaller text box displaying the continued message will have a border, but you can get rid of it. Right-click the text box's border and choose Format Text Box. Click the Colors and Lines tab and choose No Line from the Color control in the Line Section. Click OK to return to the document.

About Susan Harkins

Susan Sales Harkins is an IT consultant, specializing in desktop solutions. Previously, she was editor in chief for The Cobb Group, the world's largest publisher of technical journals.

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