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QuarkXPress has always been the perfect tool for creating and publishing documents. In QuarkXPress 8 Essential Training, Jay Nelson—the publisher of Design Tools Monthly and a QuarkXPress expert—covers all the tools and features in this updated version of the program, from basic page layout to Flash integration and web page creation. Throughout this comprehensive training, Jay shows what's needed to produce professional-quality projects that integrate text, pictures, graphics, and tables. He also offers real-world page layout techniques that designers can apply to their own projects. Exercise files accompany the course.
When working with text in QuarkXPress, it's pretty common to have the text flow from one text box to another and to do that you link the text boxes together using the Linking tool. So for example in this newsletter project here, in the very first column we have a text box that has more text in it than it'll fit in that box and we want to continue it in other text boxes. There is a text box here we can put it in and if we scroll down to page 2, we want to continue it here in this text box and here in this text box.
One way we know that we have more text in this box than will fit is that well, we created the text and so we know there is a lot more. But another way to know is this visual indicator at the bottom down here. I'm going to zoom in and have a look at it. It's a little box with an X in it that indicates text overflow, which means that there is more text in the box than it can be displayed in it right now. So I'll zoom back out. We want to get the Linking tool and link this text box to the next text box. It's easy enough to do. Select the first text box, go to the Text Content tool and underneath it, if you click-and-hold your mouse button down you will see a couple of other icons.
This is the Unlinking tool and this is the Linking tool. So, let's take the Linking tool, click on our first text box and then click on the one we want to link it to. Now, since we want to link it to the text boxes that are on page 2, we need to navigate down to page 2 in some way and we can do that any number of ways. One way is to simply hold down the Option or Alt key and drag your page over and then as soon as you see the text boxes that you are after, you can simply click on them. Notice that the cursor turns to the Linking tool when I'm over the text box. When I'm not on the text box, it's a standard pointer.
So I'll click on the text box and then click on the next box that I want to link to. I don't need to link it to any other text boxes because it's all full. To tell XPress that you are finished linking boxes, you can just select a different tool, say the Item tool, and continue on with your work. Now, let's say you change your mind and you want to unlink these boxes from each other. All you have to do is select one of the text boxes that's linked, choose the Unlinking tool and click where the text would be flowing out of the box and into the next one. So if I click right here, the Unlinking tool appears and I can click and now I'm back to where I started.
These other boxes are still linked together, so if text flows into them, they'll continue to flow from one box to the next. But this box here is now unlinked from the others. Now, let's say you want to unlink a box in the middle of a text chain. I'll just quickly relink them here. Link, link and continue on, link, link. Now, let's say I want to remove this text box here from the chain. All I have to do is get the Unlinking tool and Shift-click on it. Notice how the text now flows from the front page to this column, skipping that column.
Now, let's say you have a chain of text boxes and you want to take one from the middle and copy it somewhere else. One way to do that is to get the Item tool, select this box for example right here, choose Edit > Copy and then Edit > Paste. Now, we have a duplicate of that text box and everything that's continued on beyond it that's flowing into the other link text boxes, but nothing before it. And that's just something to remember, when you are copying a text box from the middle of a linked chain of text boxes. It takes what's in the text box you are copying and everything after it but nothing before it.
Now, let me give you a tip that will help you if you are ever given a document or you are looking at an older document that you created and you don't remember what's linked to what. All you have to do is get the Linking tool again, click on any text box and you can see the chain as it flows from box to box. And when you are finished doing that, of course click back on the Item tool so that you don't wind up linking a text box to another text box when you didn't intend to. Once you work with the Linking tools for just a little while, you'll get the hang of it and pretty soon it will become second nature.
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