Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Creating the standard invitation
You can perform a mail merge without using Excel by typing the information
that will fi ll the gaps into a special table in Word, but it’s much easier and
more fl exible if you use an Excel spreadsheet.
I’m planning to invite my friends to a summer walk through London, followed by
dinner at home for a select few. Each invitation will have the recipient’s name on
it, taken from my address book, and Word will automatically add in text if the
recipient is also invited to dinner.
For our invitation, we’re going to leave a space for the invitee’s name. We’ll get
Word to fi ll this gap using our address book spreadsheet (see Chapter 4), and we’ll
also get Word to make some of the decisions for us. We only want to invite people
who live in London, and we want to invite some of our friends to join us for dinner
afterwards. Using Offi ce, this is easy. Best of all, we don’t risk losing anyone who
can’t read our handwritten addition to the invitation, or offending anyone by
crossing out the dinner bit and scrawling ‘Not you’! on it!
Mail merge is another feature that only works if your spreadsheet is the right
way up. Make sure all the information on a row refers to the same person,
and all the information in a column is of the same type. See Chapter 4 for
help with this.
Creating the standard invitation
The fi rst step is to design the standard invitation. You can use a template for this
(see Chapter 2) but I wouldn’t recommend it for your fi rst mail merge project.
Some of the templates can be complicated and may make the process more
confusing. I suggest you keep it simple.
For now, just create your invitation as if it is only going to one person. So that I
don’t get confused and think this is a real invitation ready to send at any time, I’m
going to create an invitation for someone called ‘Whoever Youare’. I’ve used fi
ctional fi rst and second names to make sure there will be space for both once the
 
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