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This movie is about paragraph rules. Now not rules as in rules and regulations, but rules as in lines. Attaching a line above or below a paragraph so that it flows with the paragraph as the text moves along is called a rule in QuarkXPress. If you have the Petstumes Project open, click over to the Magazine spreads layout and you will see this page right here. Now, this text box here has a paragraph rule in it, which means that if I add more text, the rule goes along with the text.
Now, how did we apply that rule to it? Well, that's a Paragraph Format attribute. Now, while most Paragraph Format attributes can be found in the Measurements palette, Rule Above and Rule Below isn't there. Instead you will find it in the Formats dialog box under Style > Rules. That will open the Paragraph Attributes dialog box and activate the Rules tab. Note that this paragraph here has a Rule Below that's set to the indents of the text box, 40% below the bottom of the paragraph of a Solid style with the five points, Black color, 100% Black Shade, 100% Opacity.
Of course, you can adjust all these things to look the way you like them. This area up here determines how long the rule is going to be. When you select Indents, it will match the indents of the text box. If you select Text, it will match the length of the text that's right above the rule in the case of the Rule Below or right below the rule, in the case of the Rule Above. Column means, if you have a multi-column text box, the rule will be the width of the column that the text is in. You can also force it to be a different length by indenting it from the left edge of the text box or from the right edge of the text box.
Now, whether you choose to put the rule above or the rule below, it's going to be determined by the way the text flows in your box. In this particular case, it's a very simple box. But if we were doing a catalog or a directory or something that had a lot of repeating elements that you wanted to have rules above or rules below, the choice of Rule Above or Rule Below can make a difference. In most cases, Rule Above works the best and don't forget, you can choose many different styles of rules, dotted rules, dash rules and even these multi-stripe rules.
I have one note about this Offset amount. The Offset amount can either be a percentage or an absolute number. If it's an absolute number, it will place the rule that amount of space, either below the baseline of the last line in the paragraph or above the baseline in the first line of the paragraph if you are making a rule above. If you enter a percentage, the rule will appear at that percent of the distance between the current paragraph and the next one. So, as you see in this one, this rule is about 40% of the way down between this paragraph and the one below it.
Being able to attach a rule above or below a paragraph can make lengthy documents extremely easy to format and make them very attractive at the same time.
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