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How do I… Integrate mail merge in Microsoft Word with Excel

Mail merge step 2: Choose the starting document.

Step 2: Select starting document

Any document you've created can be converted into a form letter. Or, if you want to start from scratch, you can use the current document (which, for me, is a blank document) and type your letter. You can also use any document template on your computer, or on Office Online, Microsoft's Web repository that contains hundreds of templates available for download.

This starting document is often referred to as the "master document" as well. The terms are interchangeable, although other Word features also use the term "master document", so be sure to keep things straight.

The starting document is the document that will ultimately contain the base form letter.

I'm going to use the blank document I have on the screen as the starting document.

Once you've decided on the document that gets the honor of being the starting document, click the "Next: Select recipients" option. Notice that the wizard also allows you to go back to the previous step if you need to.

In step 4 of the wizard, you will be able to modify your letter.