Author Topic: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document  (Read 8262 times)

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teri

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Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« on: April 05, 2006, 06:02 PM »
Hi all,

Everyone here has been so helpful to me when I have an agent question, and I was browsing the SCBWI boards and noticed a question about good ways to get to individual chapters in a novel in Word docs.  I am not a member, so I couldn't post this over there, but I thought maybe some people here might have the same question, and I can actually help with this one!

When you start a new chapter, select the "Chapter One" or the chapter title.  Then right click and you will see a menu with choices.  Select "Paragraph" and left click it.  This will bring up the paragraph formatting box.  At the top right of this box on the "Indents and Spacing" tab (should be the tab the box opens to by default) you will see "Outline Level" with a drop down box.  Choose "Level One" for your chapter title.  Then just go ahead and close and write.  When ever you want to see all your chapters, go to the "View" menu at the top of the Word window, select "Document map" and you will see all chapters on the left side of your screen.  To go to any chapter simply click on it in the left panel and you will skip right to it.  You can also set lesser levels in your text--level two, level three, etc., and you can choose to view these in your document map.  To choose what levels you want to view, right click anywhere in the document map pane.  This way, you can view just level one (your chapter titles) or, for example, level one and level two.  You could use level two for an important moment in a scene, for example, that you know you will need to reference for later writing. 

I find this so much easier than saving chapters as separate documents, or bookmarking chapters.  You can actually see the words in the document map, so if your chapters use names instead of numbers it is a great prompt (Now, where did that escape happen again?  Oh yeah, in the chapter titled "The Escape."  Same with lower levels.

Hope this tip helps somebody as much as you guys have helped me!

Offline kabarson

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #1 on: April 05, 2006, 06:31 PM »
Thanks, Teri!
I didn't even know that would help until you mentioned it. I went through and marked each chapter heading. I'm so excited. It should save me a lot of time searching!
I love Word tips because I don't know so much about it.
Kelly
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Offline olmue

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #2 on: April 05, 2006, 06:51 PM »
Thank you! I had no idea Word did that!

teri

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #3 on: April 05, 2006, 07:09 PM »
Goody!  Glad I can help somehow.

Offline Natalie

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #4 on: April 06, 2006, 05:30 AM »
Thanks, Teri--what a difference that makes! Do you mind if I ask another question (for you, or anyone else who may know the answer...)?

Now that I'm revising my mg and adding and deleting things, my chapter titles are all off now...--is there a way to format the document so that all chapter headings always begin a third of the way down the page? Does this make sense?   :confused2:

Thanks in advance!
 :) Natalie
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teri

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #5 on: April 06, 2006, 07:23 AM »
Hi Natalie,

I don't know the answer to that one.  Thought I did but I tried it and it didn't work.  I will experiment a bit and if I come up with it I will post.

Teri

Offline Vinca

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #6 on: April 06, 2006, 07:37 AM »
Thank you, Teri, for this info.  I'm a computer illiterate and know that I'm doing things the long, hard, stupid way but never know the easier approaches.  I'm going to try to get this method down and apply it to my work.  Cool!

shelly

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #7 on: April 06, 2006, 07:38 AM »
Thanks, Teri! So nice of you to share that tip.


Offline Cana

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #8 on: April 06, 2006, 07:42 AM »
Ummm, Teri. What am I doing wrong? My levels only go to nine. I have more than nine chapters.  I labeled the first nine chapters before I realized that I couldn't go any farther. Then, duh me, I went back through each chapter and relabled them as body text. I could have closed the document and told it not to save in one easy click.  :banghead: :banghead: :banghead: :banghead: :banghead: :banghead:
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Offline Natalie

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #9 on: April 06, 2006, 07:49 AM »
Hi Cana,

I did the same thing before realizing that ALL of the chapters will go under level 1...then you'll have a list of all chapters when you look at the document map. Hope this makes sense!  :typing:

Natalie
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teri

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #10 on: April 06, 2006, 07:55 AM »
Hi Cana,

Natalie is correct--you save each chapter heading as level i.  If you want to look at sections within chapters you can save them as lesser levels--for example, if you want to save a critical scene that you will have to reference many times while writing, you can make it a level 2 and be able to quickly go to it later.

Make sense?

Teri

Offline Cana

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #11 on: April 06, 2006, 08:00 AM »
Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Got it. Thanks.
Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.~Edison
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JavaKid

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #12 on: April 06, 2006, 08:18 AM »
Natalie: I don't know if I'm going to insult your intelligence here - but here goes... When you wanted to start a new chapter, mid way down a fresh page, did you just add blank lines until the cursor went onto a new page?

Offline Vinca

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #13 on: April 06, 2006, 08:26 AM »
Okay, I got all my chapters listed under Level 1.  Then I had the great idea to find character descriptions and list those under Level 2. 

Questions: 

I tried marking partway into a paragraph but the citation is my paragraph's opening sentence.  Is there a way to cite a sentence buried in a paragraph?

How do you remove something from a Level? 

Can you label the Levels?  (The chapters are self-explantory but I'd like to put Character Descriptions)

Thanks Teri or anyone else who can help!


teri

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #14 on: April 06, 2006, 09:00 AM »
Hi--unfortunately document map is limited to paragraph chunks.  So if what you need to reference is within a paragraph you are stuck seeing the first words of the paragraph as a prompt in doc map.  And there is no way that I am aware of to label levels--I have found it handy if they get really complex to have a cheat sheet where I record what is what ( a word doc with just what my levels are--level 1 = chapters, level 2 = descriptions, level 3 = first reference to any character, etc.).

Offline Natalie

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #15 on: April 06, 2006, 09:06 AM »
Hi, Java Kid,

No, it's pretty difficult to insult my intelligence when it comes to computers, unfortunately!  ??? What's happened is that I set up all the chapter headings after the first draft, and now that I'm revising, everything's being shifted around. I suppose I could wait until the very bitter end (is there an end to revising??), but I wanted something that would keep the headings in place so I don't have to redo them everytime I revise or tweak. Maybe inserting a page break after each chapter, then spacing down for the next chapter header?
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JavaKid

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #16 on: April 06, 2006, 09:21 AM »
Hmm - it's as I expected.  You're manually putting the chapter headings in place yourself by just padding the document until they appear where you want them.

The easy solution is to insert a page break after each chapter, as you say.  The best solution is to insert a page break and create a style for the chapter header which has a large border at the top, sufficient to put the header 1/3 of the way down the page as you require.

sunnyleo

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #17 on: April 12, 2006, 02:15 PM »
I gave up on trying to edit my novels in Word and used an free PC outliner instead (http://www.tranglos.com/free/keynote.html). Keynote helps me keep story logic consistent because it's easy to scrolling through all the chapters quickly.

Offline Laurie

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #18 on: April 12, 2006, 02:35 PM »
Not meaning to hijack the thread...but...Hey SunnyL, where ya' been?

Laurie

Jennie_1551

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #19 on: April 12, 2006, 02:58 PM »
Thanks, Teri. I just added all my chapter headings and now I can jump around so quickly. This is also handy for my job when I do the annual reports and such.

Cool!

J.

sunnyleo

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #20 on: April 20, 2006, 06:59 AM »
Not meaning to hijack the thread...but...Hey SunnyL, where ya' been?

Self-imposed web-board exile. Boy, does the Internet eat up all my time... :-)

I found this post most interesting because I've been trying to edit my novels in Word and discovered it painful to use on novels greater than 30K words. I'd love to find some novel writing software that scanned my novel and statistics: i.e number of dialogue lines, number of times I used saw / took / felt / looked, average paragraph length, etc..

I have no idea how authors can keep a 100,000+ word novel logically consistent.

Offline Karen K

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #21 on: April 20, 2006, 05:03 PM »
I've been formatting my chapters as "Heading 1", so when I grab the scroll thingie (my, how technical I am) and pull, the chapters show up below the page numbers. I recently discovered how to add an automatic table of contents for a friend's nonfiction book. I was impressed by Word's power and my ignorance. 

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Offline Hannah

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #22 on: April 21, 2006, 08:50 PM »
That's neat--can't wait to try!
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Offline jane

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #23 on: September 18, 2006, 02:06 PM »
I just wanted to bump this back to the *top* of the pile.  I've been revising a novel and it has been the most helpful tool! 

Thanks to Teri for posting it in the first place.

Jane
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Offline Skarecrow

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #24 on: September 18, 2006, 04:11 PM »
thanks for the bump, Jane....It is a good topic....I just came aboard a couple of weeks ago, and would have missed it...thanks, again, Skarecrow
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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #25 on: September 19, 2006, 03:20 AM »
Thanks for the tip.  I'm going to file it away for later use.  Right now my pb ms can be managed with the edit/find feature.  LOL.  This will come in handy when I write my life's story.  Thanks again.

Mauri

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #26 on: September 14, 2009, 01:49 PM »
I wanted to bump this thread in case there are folks out there who might be revising (like me!) and searching for it. I just started using the document map feature and used this post to figure out how to get my chapter headings to show up in it.
It's funny how you can write for years and not know about these simple, yet wonderful tools to make the job easier!
Happy writing!
Maurissa

Sharif

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #27 on: September 14, 2009, 02:27 PM »
Just tried it.  It works.   :smile

What I'm used to doing is minimizing the manuscript to 25% so that it's faster scrolling through it until I find the chapter breaks I'm interested in.

Now I'll experiment with this.

Heather Lane

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #28 on: September 14, 2009, 02:37 PM »
Thanks for this-- and thanks to the folks who keep bumping this up.  I had no idea word did this sort of thing.  Within my chapters, I rotate between the POV of my two major characters, so not only are the Chapter breaks hugely important, but each POV change.  This tool will be indespensible.  Thanks Teri!

Offline sbk(linda)

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Re: Way to easily get to each chapter in a Word document
« Reply #29 on: September 14, 2009, 05:37 PM »
How did I never know this before??? I feel like a whole new person! I want to go frolic in a field of flowers and ... and ... sing!!! :flowers :flowers :flowers