7 Replies Latest reply on Aug 21, 2015 11:45 AM by Peter Spier

    Can I save a text box as a style?

    roncurington Level 1


      First let me say that I’m using Indesign CS6


      I have been searching for days for an answer to this question.


      Here is my objective. I’m going to be creating a book with lots of pages and I would like to be able to just drop content from MS Word or Notepad  into a new .Indd page without having to resize the text box every time aligning the edges top bottom & side every time. It would be so nice to be able to drag my .txt file onto the stage and then just apply a style to it and it instantly align to the top left corner and expand to the right edge of the page and extend to what ever length it needs. The problem I have with having to manually drag the edges to the desired location is that I have difficulty getting the required precision. I guess I lack the manual dexterity.




      I see that I can set the height width and X & Y axis in the top property bar but I don’t see a way to set those values through the Object styles dialogue. I had kind of hoped maybe there was a way to save a text box that I had created as a style that would preserve all the attribute’s I had defined.




      Anyone have any thought about this?


        • 1. Re: Can I save a text box as a style?
          Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

          If you don't plan on doing any actual editing or formatting in ID, why bother using it? Print from Word.

          • 2. Re: Can I save a text box as a style?
            roncurington Level 1


            REALLY ???


            So you’re not really the person who could actually offer any help here.  Only snide remarks.




            Never the less, to your question. MS Word is a word processor software and Indesign is a design software. It’s probably presumptuous of me to assume you understand the difference between these two concepts.


            When it’s all said and done getting information on how to use Indesign  as a design tool was in fact my reason for coming here and asking the question.


            • 3. Re: Can I save a text box as a style?
              Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

              I understand completely, but your question implies you want the exact same layout in InDesign that you have in Word. Perhaps you weren't clear in how you asked your question.


              If you set up a master page with the desired margins for your text block, or perhaps a master text frame, you can certainly flow text from Word onto your InDesign pages and InDesign will use the layout you've established without having to resize every frame. You will not, however, get an exact line-for-line match between Word and ID, precisely because Word is a word processor and InDesign is a layout application with far more typographical control and subtlety.


              I'm not at all clear what you mean by drag your .txt file onto the stage (ID has no stage, only pages and spreads). From where are you dragging? How is your page set up? What is the exact action you are performing, step by step?


              Typically, when bringing text into ID, you would use File > Place... and select the text file. This will give you a loaded "place gun" cursor, and how you work with the place gun, and whether you have created a Primary Text Frame and turned on Smart Text Reflow determines what will happen with the text. Neither Primary Text frames, nor Smart Text Reflow are required, nor necessarily desirable, if you are only importing text rather than typing directly into InDesign and expecting new pages to be added automatically as you type.


              With the loaded place gun you can click in an existing frame, click and drag a new frame, or click and release where there is no frame. For the first, ID will use the existing frame, the second ID will create a frame on the fly matching the shape you drag, and for the last ID will create a frame on the fly as wide as the column guides (margin guides if you have a single column layout), and extending from the point where you click to the bottom margin. Without a master text frame, holding down the Shift key when you click will put you into auto-flow mode, and ID will continue to add frames, and pages, that match the layout guides you've established until the entire text is included on a page.


              You can create an object style that defines the formatting of a text frame, but object styles do not include dimensions. Text frames can also be set to auto-expand in various ways to accommodate changes in the amount or size of the text. Without knowing more than you have told us about the text and the document you are creating it is not possible to offer specific advice on what settings you should be using.


              There are help topics on the basics of importing and working with text, and I can recommend Sandee Cohen's Visual Quickstart Guide to InDesign as an excellent beginner resource.


              Feel free, too, to ask more questions, but provide as much information as you can to allow us to help you.

              • 4. Re: Can I save a text box as a style?
                Derek Cross Adobe Community Professional

                Please don't be rude Roncuringtone - Peter is one of the most knowledgable and helpful people on this forum, and, as you can see by his response, gracious too.

                • 5. Re: Can I save a text box as a style?
                  roncurington Level 1


                  I apologize if I was a little short with my response. I would seem that we are both not making ourselves clear. Honestly after rereading my original post several times I still can’t see where you can get that I’m trying to use Indesign as a word processor. In any event I do apologize as the frustration was perhaps getting to me.




                  BTW it would seem after further digging Indesign does save the attributes defined in the property bar  if you create a new Paragraph style from an existing text box



                  My thanks to everyone

                  • 6. Re: Can I save a text box as a style?
                    roncurington Level 1


                    To clarify, if you have a text box selected and active and open the “New Paragraph Style” dialogue it assumes the active text box is where you are starting from unless you further define the style before closing the dialogue box.


                    • 7. Re: Can I save a text box as a style?
                      Peter Spier Most Valuable Participant (Moderator)

                      Which is not the same thing as defining a style based on a text frame. ID will look at text attributes at the current cursor location and pre-fill the new Paragraph Style or new Character Style dialogs with those text attributes, but that's not at all what I understood you to be asking previously. which was how to predefine a frame size and position based on an existing frame.