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David Blatner brings his knowledge of and passion for InDesign to the latest release of this state-of-the-art publishing program, showing how to harness its power and functionality. InDesign CS4 Beyond the Basics covers the process of publishing with an eye on the program's latest nuances: optimizing page layouts, automating InDesign with Data Merge and XML, exploring interactive documents (including making movies), and exporting publications to a variety of formats. Exercise files accompany the course.
No one enjoys applying paragraph styles to a bunch of text, but many of us have to do it every day, one paragraph at a time. For example, I have the sheet_v4 document open from the Exercise Files and I can see that I need to format a bunch of text here. I am going to double-click on this first paragraph as the payment options; I will open my Paragraph Styles panel. That one, I pull this out, it will be easier to see it. And I need to apply the subhead to this paragraph and place the cursor on the next paragraph and apply Body to that and then over here apply subhead and then Body and subhead and Body and subhead and so on.
And you know what? This is a recipe for boredom. This would make me crazy if I had to do this day in and day out. There has got to be a faster way. I mean, wouldn't it be great if you could just apply a bunch of different paragraph styles with a single click? In fact there is and it's called Next Style. Let me show you how it works. I am going to press Command+Z or Ctrl+Z on Windows just three times to go back to where I was and let's see how Next Style works. I am going to edit my subhead style by right-clicking on it or Ctrl-clicking with a one button mouse and choose Edit Subhead. There we go, now see this feature here, Next Style? I am going to set this to Body. The way Next Style usually is used is that if you are actually typing along in the subhead style and you hit a Return to go to the next line, Return or Enter to go to the next paragraph, it will automatically switch to Body. That's how it works in InDesign and Microsoft Word and lots of other programs.
But I am going to use Next Style a little bit differently. So I have set up subhead to have a Next Style of Body, click OK and now I am going to edit Body to have a Next Style of subhead. All right, so it is going to go back and forth. Now, I need to apply that back and forth to all this text. So I will select this text, I will select down to here. I just quadruple-clicked and dragged down to about here because I don't need to apply it to this text down here. That is different formatting. But this is the text I need to apply that to. Now, I am going to go over to the subhead and right-click on it or Ctrl-click with a one button mouse in order to get my Context menu. I am not going to edit the subhead or duplicate or delete it. I am going to Apply the subhead and then Next Style and you will only see this if you have selected more than one paragraph or a text frame that has more than one paragraph in it and you have setup your paragraph styles to have a Next Style.
So let's try it out. I will click on it and we can see with a single click all of that formatting was done, the subhead, Body, subhead, Body, subhead, Body and so on. It's a thing of beauty. I love it. Now, this text down here should be formatted differently, but that will just take a couple of clicks. I will just drag over that and click Body, drag over here and select the numbered list and I am done. So that's not so hard. That's not tedious. Let's see one more example of this. I am going to press Shift+Page Up to go to the previous page and let's move the paragraph styles over here, so we can see that I have got three different text frames over here. I will zoom-in and we can see that each of these has a pattern, a head, a description and a price, head, description, price and so on.
All right, so as soon as you see a pattern like that with three different kinds of paragraphs or more, know that you can use this Next Style trick. Now, this time I am not going to apply one at a time manually; I am going to create an Object style. So I will select my Selection tool. I will come out here and get my Object Styles panel and I am going to Option-click or Alt-click on the New Style button to open a New Object Style dialog box. I am just going to call this products, okay. Now, here is the trick. Paragraph Styles, the Paragraph Styles pane of the New Object Style dialog box lets me specify a paragraph style. And in this case I want to choose the first paragraph style in the dialog box and that was ProductHead. Now, I went ahead and made a ProductHead, a Product Description, Product Price style for us already. I set up the Next Styles just so I don't have to bore you us doing that all over again. But in this case I want to apply ProductHead first and then have it do the Description and the Price for me.
And the key to that is of course the Apply the Next Style checkbox. Turn that on and watch the magic happen. But before I do that I need to turn off all of these other checkboxes. Actually I don't need to technically, but in this particular case I don't need all of these other features in here. Actually there is a little shortcut. Let me show you a trick. Option-click on the checkbox will toggle the setting for all the other checkboxes. So if I Option or Alt-click on Windows on that, it turns that one on and turns all the others off.
And I can turn that Transparency off manually. So there is a little trick so I can just set up paragraph styles. Again not essential, but for this particular object style I don't need any of the other settings. I just want paragraph styles. Click OK and now let's see if it works. I am going to select all three of these text frames and then I am going to come over here and click on products and we are done. With one click I have applied that formatting to all of those different paragraphs. Now, of course this all relies on a repeating pattern of styles to work. But for many of us this one little hidden feature can shave off a bunch of tedious work each day.
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