Tips for people editing (or self-editing) in Word

Editing tips

Track Changes: how do you accept all formatting track changes (but not any other changes)? 

  • In the ‘Show Markup’ drop-down menu, un-tick everything except for ‘formatting’. Only the formatting ‘bubbles’ are now visible in the review pane.
  • Now, in the ‘Accept’ drop down menu, click ‘Accept all changes shown’.
  • Save, and reopen the document. All the formatting ‘bubbles’ are gone.

Hyphens, en and em dashes

Opinions and rules of usage about en and em dashes differ in different countries. The below rules apply to Australian usage.

  • ‘Hyphen’ is a very short dash. It is used to link compound words and separate syllables of a single word. To create a hyphen between two words, type : hyphen (no spaces).
  • ‘En’ dash is slightly longer than a hyphen.  It is used to represent a span or range of numbers, dates or time; or to link a compound to another word (e.g. New Zealand-based businesses). Australian Style manual: the ‘en’ is unspaced if linking one word or figure, but spaced if linking more than word on either or both sides. Create an ‘autocorrect’ en dash, using a symbol of your choice; or create an en dash between two words with: space, hyphen, space.
  • ‘Em’ dash is longer than an en dash (i.e. the length of an ‘m’, not an ‘n’). An em dash (—) is usually used to indicate a break in thought, although it can also be used in place of a comma (to create emphasis). In Australia, the em dash is usually unspaced. Create an ‘autocorrect’ em dash, using a symbol of your choice; or create an em dash between two words with: ‘hyphen, hyphen’ (no spaces).
  • More information about when to use hyphens, en and ems and different ways to create them in Word: Dashes and hyphens.

Helpful links

Note: this article is a work-in-progress resource comprising tips, and links to helpful articles, about editing and using Word tools for that editing, which I continually update as I come across new items of interest to writers and editors. As I include more information, I’ll create new headings, and possibly separate this into more than one article, so it’s easy to look up information.

Photo: Pixabay – Creative Commons Licence – no attribution required.


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