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In this series, David Blatner and Anne-Marie Concepción, co-hosts of the web's top resource for InDesign tips and tricks, InDesignSecrets.com, share some hidden and sometimes surprising workflow tips that will make working in InDesign more efficient and more fun. The course covers built-in timesaving features such as Quick Apply and auto-expanding text, but also little-known tricks, such as using the eyedropper to copy and paste character and paragraph text attributes and making accurate selections by selecting through or even into objects.
New techniques will be added to the collection every other week, so check back early and often. Find more tips and tricks at indesignsecrets.com.
- A lot of designers, myself included, are very picky about hyphenation in our documents. We're looking right now at a section of a spread from InDesign Magazine. We're very careful about how many words are hyphenated in a paragraph here. The best way to control hyphenation, is of course, from the paragraph style. If we opened up the paragraph style for a list bullets, and edited it, and go down to the hyphenation panel. You can see that we only allow words at least five letters to be hyphenated, and we don't want more than three at a time.
Let's say for whatever reason that there is still and escapee. There was still a word that's hyphenating in here that while it goes according to the rules that we set, we just don't want it to hyphenate. For example, this word right here. Destinations. What if I didn't want this word to hyphenate. Now, I have seen many times other InDesign users saw this problem by doing this. I'm pushing shift and the return key, and I am forcing a line break. I have seen documents where every paragraph is riddled with these things.
If you can't control it with the paragraph style, and just reducing the number of hyphens in a row, then three are other ways to prevent particular words from hyphenating. What's wrong with creating a soft return, aka, a line break, because if you edit the text above it, then this kind of starts to look kind of stupid, and then throws of final proofing and getting the job out the door, this can escape your attention. That's never anything that you want to do. Do not use soft returns to prevent words from breaking. There are many other ways I want to show you, three of them in this video.
The first way is to select the word and apply the no break formatting to it. I'm going to select the entire word by double-clicking on it. The no breaking formatting is in the control panel way at the far right in the menu, and choose no break right there. That keeps the word together, whether it moves it to the top line or below it. InDesign is able to reformat the paragraph to even out the spacing. It's not really obvious that you're forcing anything to the bottom or the top.
As I edit the this, that word never hyphenates. Maybe, that's what you want. I'm going to undo a few times to get it to hyphenate again. That's way number one. Of course, you can always create a character style, that all it does is have the no break command applied to it. Then, you can apply the character style. That's a little better, because you can then do a search and replace with things with no break. You can edit the no break character style to turn the text into a different color if you want to see where you've applied it, and so on.
If you're going to be doing it more than a few times, then you might as well create a character style. Second way to prevent this word from hyphenating is to click in front of the word, and insert a discretionary hyphen. This is an old trick for anybody who's been using layout software since time began, like myself. Go down to the type menu, go down to insert special character, hyphens and dashes, discretionary hyphen. If you use this a lot, you might remember the keyboard shortcut. I never do. By inserting a discretionary hyphen in front of it, this tells InDesign do not hyphenate any part of this word.
This is a little better than no break, in my opinion, because you can actually see that something is happening to this word, as long as you've turned on special characters. These little elements here. You can't really tell when you've applied no break unless you click on the word and look at the formatting to see if there's a check-mark there. Let's zoom out a bit. The third way to prevent the word from hyphenating is to select the word and switch the language for the word. By default, all the text is using the English spelling and hyphenation dictionary.
If we change the language to no language, that just means remove this word from consideration for hyphenation and for spell checking as well. Be careful with it, because it won't flag it if it's misspelled. That's a method that use a lot when I'm trying to prevent words in a URL from hyphenating. The lesson was if you can't control the hyphenation that you want via the paragraph style, then whatever you do, don't use a soft return because that will mess you up. Instead, use one of these three methods.
Choose no break, insert a discretion hyphen in front of the word, or change it's language to no language. There you go.
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