Potentially Useful Tip #2 – Macro for William Shunn’s Formatting

I like to write/edit with single line spacing, an extra line between paragraphs, and no indention on paragraphs.  I don’t really care what font I use.  However, I have to submit with different settings. This used to mean time taking transformations, but now I can reformat my piece from any format settings to William Shunn’s Proper Manuscript Format – http://www.shunn.net/format/story.html – with the click of a button. The way I do this is through the use of a macro.

NOTE: I am using Microsoft Word 2007 for this demonstration.  Other version of Word are capable of macros with very minor changes to the steps listed.  If you are using a different word processor, you will need to check your documentation.

Macro Menu on Developer Tab

For these instructions, we need the Developer tab in the ribbon.  Enable the Developer tab by clicking the Microsoft Office Button in the upper left of the screen and selecting “Word Options” on the bottom right. Then, from the “Popular” tab, select “Show Developer tab in the Ribbon.” Click the “OK” button, and you should now see a “Developer” tab in the ribbon.

Record Macro Dialog Box

First, setup and start the macro:

  • From the “Developer” tab
  • Click “Record Macro”
  • Give the macro a name and description
  • Assign the macro to a button or keyboard shortcut
  • I have chosen the shortcut Ctrl-Shift-F1
  • Press the “Close” button to close the “Customize Keyboard” dialog box

At this point, you are recording a macro. Every command you do will be saved in the macro.  We want to get set up for all the changes, and I do that in two steps:

  • Click on the “Home” tab of the ribbon
  • Ctrl-A to select all

Paragraph Dialog Box

Now we are going to set the paragraph settings for indention, paragraph spacing, and line spacing:

  • Open the “Paragraph” dialog box by clicking on the icon to the right of “Paragraph”
  • In the “Indentation” section, set “Special” to First line and “By” to 0.5"
  • In the “Spacing” section, set “Before” and “After” to 0 pt and “Line Spacing” to Double
  • Click the “OK” button to close the Paragraph dialog box

 

 

Font Settings from Ribbon

We also need to set the font settings, which can be done from the ribbon itself:

  • Set the font to Courier New
  • Set the font size to 12

Find and Replace Dialog Box

Because of years of MLA and APA telling me to double space between sentence, I need to remove extra spaces:

  • Press Ctrl-H to open the “Find and Replace” dialog box
  • Put two spaces in the “Find what” box
  • Put one space in the “Replace with” box
  • Click the “Replace All” button
  • Click the “OK” button to close the popup dialog
  • Click the “Close” button to close the Find and Replace dialog box

Find and Replace Dialog Box with Formatting

Now that we have done all these changes globally to the work, we need to fix scene breaks:

NOTE: I mark my scene breaks with ### so not to confuse it with other characters within my text during a search and replace step of the macro.  You will need to do something similar.

  • Press Ctrl-H to open the “Find and Replace” dialog box
  • Put ### in the “Find what” box
  • Put # or whatever mark you want to use for a scene break in the “Replace with” box
  • While the cursor is in the “Replace with” box, click the “More>>” button
  • In the “Replace” section, click the “Format” button and select “Paragraph…”
  • The “Replace Paragraph” dialog box should open
  • In the “General” section, set “Alignment” to Centered
  • In the “Indention section, set “Inside” and “Outside” to 0" and “Special” to (none)
  • Remove any mark in the “Mirror indents” checkbox
  • In the “Spacing” section, set “Before” and “After” to 0 pt and “Line Spacing” to Double
  • Remove any mark in the “Don’t add space between paragraphs…” checkbox
  • Click the “OK” button to close the “Replace Paragraph” dialog
  • At this point, there should be text under the “Replace with” box after the word “Format”
  • Click the “Replace All” button
  • Click the “OK” button to close the popup dialog
  • Click the “Close” button to close the Find and Replace dialog box

Stop Recording the Macro

This should put most of your manuscript into William Shunn’s format.  We just need to stop recording and that is done in two steps:

  • Click the “Developer” tab of the ribbon
  • Click on “Stop Recording”

To verify that you have saved the macro, click on “Macros” and examine the list (which probably only has your new macro).

To run the macro, press the shortcut or button you have created (Ctrl-Shift-F1 in my case). You now just have to reformat your title page and add your page numbers.

Anytime you want to reformat to Shunn’s, you just have to run the macro.

About R. Garrett Wilson

I am a member of the Stanislaus World Builders writing group and have participated in the FSFW writing group. I have written one drama that was based on the book of Mark and performed at my church in 2007. My story, Journeyer, is published in Analog Magazine and a novelette, The Bakrra Encounter, in the FSFW 2010 anthology, I Dreamed a Crooked Dream. I also took part in the community novel project, Stanislaus Reads and Writes, and have a chapter in their novel, Ashes in a Teardrop. Beyond writing, I enjoy road trips, photography, woodworking, watching tennis and cycling, and reading.
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