Mechanical Edit

Information to help technical writers and editors, shared by Jay Martin.

View My GitHub Profile

Style specifications

The macro reads specific words. The specifications can appear in any order, except for _ list and Styles gallery specifications.

_ style, . . . defines a style.

The available specifications appear in tables below.
Style definitions don’t need to repeat any default specifications, which allows style definitions to be shorter.

For example, a Microsoft default style is Body Text style, body font, 11 pt, 1.08 line spacing, 6 pt after, widow/orphan control, no kerning, based on Normal, followed by Body Text.

Defaults for all defined styles, . . . defines all styles.

The available specifications are the same as for style definitions.

_ list, . . . defines a list name and the styles in a list.

The beginning is read as list name. Several variations are accepted, such as “_ multilevel list styles.”
The macro adds a new list, if it doesn’t exist. The specifications are read as style names, in order, up to nine.
For example, ListBullets list, List Bullet, List Bullet 2, List Bullet 3, List Bullet 4, List Bullet 5.

_ bullet defaults, . . . or _ number defaults, . . . defines all bullets or numbers in a list.

The beginning is read as a list name. The specifications apply only to the bullets, letters, or numbers, not to the text of items.
For example, ListBullets bullet defaults, Body bullet font, tab after bullet.

Specifications for paragraph styles and character styles

Specification Examples Notes
based on _ based on no style,
based on Heading 1
The end is read as a style name, the style with specifications to copy. The Microsoft defaults are “based on Normal” for paragraph styles and “based on Default Paragraph Font” for font styles.
_ font Palatino Linotype font,
body font,
headings font
The beginning is read as a font name. “Body font” and “headings font” use the defaults (defined through the Design menu).
_ size 11 pt size The number at the beginning is read as the font size in points (whether pt or point is included or not).
bold,
not bold
   
italic,
not italic
   
small caps    
all caps    
_ color #808080 color,
black color,
automatic color
The number at the beginning is read as a hex value. Words after the number are ignored, such as “#808080 gray color.” Currently the macro reads the words “automatic” and “black” but not other colors.
_ character spacing normal character spacing,
0.5 pt character spacing
The number at the beginning is read as points. “Normal” is read as 0 pt, meaning no extra space or reduced space between characters.
kerning,
no kerning
   

Specifications for paragraph styles only

Specification Examples Notes
followed by _ followed by Body Text The end is read as a style name, the style for the next paragraph after pressing Enter.
space between,
no space between
  Several variations are accepted, such as “add space between paragraphs of the same style” and “don’t add space between paragraphs.” No space between is Microsoft’s default setting for bullet lists.
_ left indent,
_ right indent
0.5" left indent,
-0.05 right indent
The number at the beginning is read as an indent or outdent from the margin in inches (whether inch or in. or ″ is included or not). Currently the macro doesn’t look for a unit, such as cm or pt.
_ before,
_ after
6 pt after The number at the beginning is read as points for the space before or after a paragraph. Both before and after can be defined, but defining the space after is enough.
_ line spacing 1.08 line spacing,
12 pt line spacing,
at least 10.5 pt line spacing
The number at the beginning is read as the number of lines or, if “pt” appears, as the number of points of line spacing. The words “exact” or “at least” can appear before the number of points.
left aligned,
right aligned,
centered,
justified
  Several variations are accepted, such as “align left” and “center align” and “justify.”
widow/orphan control,
no widow/orphan control
  Several variations are accepted, such as “widow control” and “no widow or orphan control.”
keep with next,
don’t keep with next
  Several variations are accepted, such as “keep the paragraph with the next paragraph” and “allow a page break after the paragraph.”
keep lines together,
don’t keep lines together
  Several variations are accepted, such as “keep the paragraph lines together” and “allow a page break within the paragraph.”
page break before,
no page break before
  Several variations are accepted, such as “page break above the paragraph” and “don’t require a page break before the paragraph.”
_ top border,
_ bottom border,
_ left border,
_ right border
1 pt top border The number at the beginning is read as the border line width in points.
_ left tab,
_ center tab,
_ right tab,
center tab,
right tab,
no tabs
1" left tab The number at the beginning is read as a tab position in inches (whether inch or in. or ″ is included or not). If no number appears, then “center tab” is centered between the page margins and “right tab” is at the right margin.

Specifications for paragraph styles in lists

Specification Examples Notes
_ bullet,
no bullet
• bullet The character at the beginning of the line is read as a bullet.
“_“ _ number,
“_“ _ letter
“%1” Roman number,
"%1.%2.%3." number,
“(%2)” lowercase letter
The text inside quotation marks is read as a format code. %1 means the first-level numbering of a multilevel list, %2 means the second level, and so on. The descriptive word (Roman, lowercase, uppercase) applies to the last level only. Arabic numbers are the default. The effect is the same whether the word “number” or “letter” is used.
tab after bullet,
space after bullet,
nothing after bullet
tab after number,
nothing follows letter
The effect is the same whether the word “bullet” or “number” or “letter” is used. Several variations are accepted, such as “follows” or “following” instead of “after.”
_ bullet font,
_ number font,
_ letter font
Segoe UI bullet font,
body number font,
headings letter font
The beginning is read as a font name for the bullet, number, or letter. “Body font” and “headings font” use the defaults (defined through the Design menu).
bold numbers,
italic numbers,
bold and italic numbers
  The effect is the same whether the word “bullet” or “number” or “letter” is used.
_ bullet color,
_ number color,
_ letter color
#808080 bullet color,
black number color,
automatic letter color
The number at the beginning is read as a hex value. Words after the number are ignored, such as “#808080 gray color.” Currently the macro reads the words “automatic” and “black” but not other colors.
_ bullet indent,
_ number indent,
_ letter indent,
_ text indent
  The number at the beginning is read as an indent or outdent from the margin in inches (whether inch or in. or ″ is included or not). Currently the macro doesn’t look for a unit, such as cm or pt. The text indent is for the item after the bullet, number, or letter.

For example, the Microsoft default Styles gallery is Styles gallery, Normal, No Spacing, Heading 1, Heading 2, Heading 3, Heading 4, Heading 5, Heading 6, Heading 7, Heading 8, Heading 9, Title, Subtitle, Subtle Emphasis, Emphasis, Intense Emphasis, Strong, Quote, Intense Quote, Subtle Reference, Intense Reference, Book Title, List Paragraph, Caption, TOC Heading.

Margins, . . . defines the margins.

For example, the Microsoft default margins are Margins, 1" left, 1" right, 1" top, 1" bottom, 0.5" header, 0.5" footer.

Specification Examples Notes
_ left,
_ right,
_ top,
_ bottom,
_ header,
_ footer
0.6" left,
1 inch top
The number at the beginning is read to set a margin in inches (whether inch or in. or ″ is included or not). Currently the macro doesn’t look for a unit, such as cm or pt.
mirror margins,
no mirror margins
  Swaps the left and right margins on odd and even pages
(or doesn’t swap if “no” at the beginning).