Layout Tutorials

Using Adobe InDesign with Word - Part 1


Hello, everybody. Today I’m going to talk about how to make your long documents in Word very easily usable in InDesign. I know a lot of people are afraid of InDesign because it’s really a complicated program, but hopefully the next series of tutorials that I’m going to do here will help you out, and I’m going to give you a free template that I use that will make your life much easier.

The first thing we have to do is decide that we’re going to use InDesign, which we have decided. The next thing to do is most people have Word or something similar but I’m going to use Microsoft Word as an example. What do you do when you have your whole document, all the chapters and everything in one big file. The best thing to do is to split that out, and it can be done in probably five or 10 minutes. I’m going to show you a quick way to do that. The reason you want to do that when we get to the InDesign portion of it is, a lot of people make the mistake of just importing the whole big document, but if you ever have to change something to a chapter or add to it or anything else it becomes a pain because all your formatting and where you place things besides the text don’t live there anymore. If you put it in what’s called an InDesign book chapter by chapter it’s much easier to add, subtract, edit, if you find something later. It just keeps things cleaner, automatically page numbers and everything else. I’ll show you all that when we get to that.

First thing we’re going to do is import, or open a file in Word I should say. I’ve opened up the file that I’m going to do. This is the third book of a three book series that I’m compiling into one, so it will show you how to take all this and make it a really nice looking book instead of your usual crappy book that somebody made out of Word with a really bad template. I figure if you’re going to do it right, do it right.

What do you do? You see all this. I’ve got all these different chapters here, 15 chapters. The easiest thing I do is just highlight one chapter, go down to the next one there, hit control C. Learn your shortcut keys, which I always say. Hit control and for new document. Control V is paste it in there, control S, and you can see I’ve got a spot already made for it. If you have your first line on there as whatever the chapter it is just happens to be easy for me. Chapter one doc, I don’t even have to do anything, so I can save that.

Close that down and go to the next one. Go to chapter two. Control N, control C, control V, control S – boom, I’m done. You continue that for all of those. You’ll find that you have your document all split up. I’m sure there’s some program that I could either write or buy or find that saves you a little bit of time but this is so easy this way that I haven’t even bothered to deal with that. Literally takes me in this 15 chapter document, will probably not take me more than three to five minutes to split it out. Still have your Word document, your original one if you need it for some reason. This will bring us up to the second part, which is how do you actually design this in InDesign. That’s what the next one will be about.

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