Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Refer to the section “Where the Paragraph Formatting Commands Lurk,” earlier in this chapter,
for proper conjuring incantations.
2. In the Indentation area, locate the Special drop-down list.
3. Select First Line from the list.
4. Enter an amount in the By box (optional).
Unless you’ve messed with the settings, the box should automatically say 0.5” , which means that
Word automatically indents the first line of every paragraph a half inch — one tab stop. Type
another value if you want your indents to be more or less outrageous. (Items are measured here in
inches, not in points.)
5. Click OK.
The selected block, or the current paragraph, automatically has an indented first line.
To remove the first-line indent from a paragraph, repeat these steps and select (none) from the
drop-down list in Step 3. Then click the OK button.
Word’s AutoCorrect feature can perform these steps for you, but it’s tricky. First you must
type the paragraph. Then go back to the start of the paragraph and press the Tab key. This action
instantly sets the paragraph indentation when AutoCorrect is on. If you see the AutoCorrect icon on
the screen (shown in the margin), paragraph indenting is fixed. Ta-da!
If you choose to indent the first line of your paragraphs, you don’t really need to add
space after your paragraphs. Sure, you can do such a thing, but legions of graphics artists will
frown at you.
Making a hanging indent (an outdent)
A hanging indent isn’t in imminent peril, nor can it affect the outcome of an election. Instead, it’s a
paragraph in which the first line sticks out to the left and the rest of the paragraph is indented. It’s a
preferred way to present paragraph lists — like this:
Snore putty: It works every time. Just apply a little snore putty to your partner’s mouth and
nostrils. In just moments, that rattling din is gone and you’re back to sleeping comfortably.
To create such a beast, position the insertion pointer in the paragraph you want to hang and indent.
Press Ctrl+T, the Hanging Indent keyboard shortcut.
Because you probably won’t remember Ctrl+T all the time (who could?), paragraphs can also be
hanged and indented in the Paragraph dialog box. Follow the steps from the preceding section, but
in Step 3 choose Hanging from the drop-down list.