Grace's Mosaic Moments


Sunday, June 5, 2011

Writing 101 - Tab Conversion

Welcome to Writing 101 - Tab Conversion. Most of my Writing 101 posts are designed for newbies, but this one is aimed primarily at experienced authors who are struggling to convert old manuscripts for indie publishing. And, believe me, I learned these rules the hard way! I’ll be posting Part 2 of Writing 101 - Nuts & Bolts soon, but today I’m concentrating solely on Tabs. Instructions are given below for both MS Word and Word Perfect.

Note for Newbies: Auto Indents are set up exactly as mentioned in “To add Auto Indents.” You are strongly advised to use auto indents for every manuscript. It is the new norm.

I'd appreciate comments about whether or not you found this blog helpful.

Thanks for stopping by!

Grace (who writes as Blair Bancroft)

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Converting Manual Tabs to Auto Tabs


For Users of Microsoft Word (for Word Perfect, see below)

To delete manual tabs:

Edit - Select - All

Ctrl+F (or whatever way you choose Find) . Replace. More. Special.
Click Special & select Tab Character from the list.
Leave “Replace” blank (You are deleting all manual tabs.)
Replace All. (The screen will tell you how many tabs were deleted. It should be a lot.)

To add Auto Indents:

Edit - Select - All.

Format - Paragraph - By (part way down on the right)
Type .5 in this space (or .3 if you are formatting for indie publishing).
OK (or Enter)


To adjust Date/Place lines, which should be Flush Left (and in italics):

Highlight the line - Format - Paragraph - By
Replace the .5 with 0.
OK (or Enter)

To adjust Chapter Titles, which will be slightly lop-sided (optional)

Highlight - Format - Paragraph - By
Replace .5 with 0. OK (or Enter)
Select Center from the Toolbar.


For Users of Word Perfect

To delete manual tabs:

Edit - Select - All

F2 (or whatever you use for Find) - Match - Codes - Left Tab*
*Be sure you arrow all the way down to Left Tab.
(Do NOT use ...Left Tab (ellipsis Left Tab)

Leave “Replace” blank. Enter. This will delete all manual tabs. The screen will give you an exact count of how many.

To add Auto Indent:

Edit - Select - All

Format - Paragraph - Format - First Line Indent - type in .5 (or .3 if you are formatting for indie publishing) - OK (or Enter)

To adjust Date/Place lines, which should be Flush Left (and in italics):

Highlight - Format - Paragraph - Format - First Line Indent - 0 - OK (or Enter)

To adjust Chapter Titles, which will be slightly lop-sided (optional):

Highlight Title - Format - Paragraph - Format - First Line Indent - 0 - OK (or Enter)
Select Centering from the Toolbar.

4 comments:

  1. Thanks, Grace. I've been wondering how to do this, in case I should decide to reformat some of my old mss. to resubmit to my present publisher or self-publish!

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  2. Extremely helpful - I've bookmarked this page.

    ReplyDelete