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First line indent after soft return - any solution?

New Here ,
Jan 27, 2020 Jan 27, 2020

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I have this 300-page text to lay out, and soft returns are used extensively in the text as a second type of paragraph break. I would like to know if there is a way to automate a first line indent after every soft return. Is there?

 

I know now that Indesign doesn't consider a soft return a paragraph break, and I haven't been able to find a workaround that doesn't involve either (a) indenting manually, or (b) separating the paragraphs manually. As far as I understand the proper way to do it would have been to have only hard returns in the source text, and then to use two different paragraph styles in Indesign.

 

Any suggestions on how to best solve this, given the situation?

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correct answers 2 Correct answers

Community Expert , Jan 27, 2020 Jan 27, 2020

No, you can't define a first line indent after a soft return/line break—it only works for hard returns. 

 

You can quickly remove the line breaks and change them to hard returns:

  1. Edit > Find/Change > Text
  2. Find: ^n
    Change: ^p

 

~Barb

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Community Expert , Jan 27, 2020 Jan 27, 2020

Hi Hyx:

 

You will need to define two styles. After you remove the line breaks, assign style 1 to all of the body, and then comb through and assign style 2 to the paragraphs that were after the line breaks. You can define a keyboard shortcut for style 2 to speed things up, and while this might seem interminable, it won't take more than an hour or two for 300 pages.

 

Without someone writing a script to automate the process, this is the reality, unless the paragraphs follow a specific pattern of

...

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Community Expert ,
Jan 27, 2020 Jan 27, 2020

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No, you can't define a first line indent after a soft return/line break—it only works for hard returns. 

 

You can quickly remove the line breaks and change them to hard returns:

  1. Edit > Find/Change > Text
  2. Find: ^n
    Change: ^p

 

~Barb

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New Here ,
Jan 27, 2020 Jan 27, 2020

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Thanks for confirming that, Barb. And would there be a way of some sort to isolate the original hard returns so I could differentiate between the two after performing the Find-Change?

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New Here ,
Jan 27, 2020 Jan 27, 2020

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because otherwise, as far as I understand, as soon as I change the soft breaks to hard ones, all the paragraphs will look exactly the same, and I can't do that for this document.

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Explorer ,
Aug 14, 2023 Aug 14, 2023

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I have the same issue. 3,5 years later 😉

I want to create sort of the next example:

 

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Vel quam elementum pulvinar etiam non quam lacus suspendisse faucibus.
    Dolor sit amet consectetur adipiscing elit pellentesque habitant. Ipsum dolor sit amet consectetur adipiscing elit pellentesque habitant. Aliquam id diam maecenas ultricies mi eget mauris. Consectetur adipiscing elit ut aliquam purus sit amet luctus. Diam phasellus vestibulum lorem sed. Nulla aliquet porttitor lacus luctus.
    Eros in cursus turpis massa tincidunt dui ut ornare. Adipiscing at in tellus integer. Congue quisque egestas diam in arcu cursus euismod quis. In pellentesque massa placerat duis.

 

Platea dictumst quisque sagittis purus sit. Placerat orci nulla pellentesque dignissim. Purus viverra accumsan in nisl nisi scelerisque.

    Dictum at tempor commodo ullamcorper.

    Egestas egestas fringilla phasellus faucibus. Iaculis eu non diam phasellus vestibulum lorem sed risus. Quam pellentesque nec nam aliquam sem. 

 

So two paragraphs separate from each other with some forced line breaks where you use indent to make it more readable. I want to use it for a novel. I have a 300 pages document and do not want to do it by hand. I can. Nut I like to learn how I can force it to make life easier

 

Somebody?

 

Ruben

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Community Expert ,
Aug 14, 2023 Aug 14, 2023

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Never use forced line breaks to create space between paragraphs. Define space before and after.

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Explorer ,
Aug 14, 2023 Aug 14, 2023

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I do not want to. But how do I get indent on a second line. I can use the next style option within paragraph. But I can not set a ending for next.

 

I found a ugly way. by find and replace the ^n for ^n[with space] 

 

I can create it by hand. But not if I have a file to import and want to automate it.

 

 

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Community Expert ,
Jan 27, 2020 Jan 27, 2020

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Hi Hyx:

 

You will need to define two styles. After you remove the line breaks, assign style 1 to all of the body, and then comb through and assign style 2 to the paragraphs that were after the line breaks. You can define a keyboard shortcut for style 2 to speed things up, and while this might seem interminable, it won't take more than an hour or two for 300 pages.

 

Without someone writing a script to automate the process, this is the reality, unless the paragraphs follow a specific pattern of style 1, style 2, style 1, style 2 for the entire document (no deviations). If they do, let us know and we can give you a faster option using Next Style

 

~Barb 

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Guide ,
Jan 27, 2020 Jan 27, 2020

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For example, it could be done in 2 steps in this way (try in a copy of your file first)

First step:

Grep

Find:

\n

Change

\r££

(££ is a combination of the two symbols that are probably not present in your file. You can choose other symbol or combination)

 

Second step:

Find

(^££)(.+$)

Change

$2

format: your paragraph style with indent

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New Here ,
Jan 29, 2020 Jan 29, 2020

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vladan - thanks for your suggestion, I will definitely give that a go. 😃

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New Here ,
Jan 29, 2020 Jan 29, 2020

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Got it, thanks a lot!

And you're right, I wouldn't be able to use the Next Style option.

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Community Expert ,
Aug 14, 2023 Aug 14, 2023

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Although I think it is best done with two styles as Barb suggested, you could add a tab stop to the body paragraph style. When you enter a line break, follow it up with a tab.

 

David Creamer: Community Expert (ACI and ACE 1995-2023)

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Explorer ,
Aug 14, 2023 Aug 14, 2023

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Yes this is sort of the only thing I can do. Starting it with a tab. It is ugly but it can be used by the writer. It is just that if I update the file the work after is less as possible. 

thanks

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Community Expert ,
Aug 14, 2023 Aug 14, 2023

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Hi, @rubenlourens — this is at least the second thread in which you are seeking answers for your problem. The other thread went into great detail about how to use two styles to get exactly the result you describe, but I get the feeling you are misunderstanding much about styles and how to apply them to your (or this third-party writer's) composition.

 

Put simply, there is only one right way to do this — have a non-indented paragraph combined with indented paragraphs — and the prior dicussion took this two-style method, as Barb also mentions in the older discussion above, in step-by-step detail.

 

If the writer persists in using faulty technques, such as a soft return/line break followed by spacing or a tab, it's up to you as the layout designer to convert this flow to the proper, two-style layout. Use search and replace to find [linebreak][tab] and replace it with a paragraph end, applying the indented style to the new paragraph.

 

Any other process or workaround or preserving line breaks within a single paragraph and style is simply poor layout, and limits the quality of what you will be able to achieve in this project (or any other).

 

Put another way, it doesn't matter what techniques or process the writer is using in Word. They're faulty there, too, and there is absolutely no reason to preserve this broken method in laying the material out in InDesign.


┋┊ InDesign to Kindle (& EPUB): A Professional Guide ┊ (Amazon) ┊┋

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Community Expert ,
Aug 14, 2023 Aug 14, 2023

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You are asking for a feature that doesn't exist: treating line breaks the same as a paragraph return (as far as indents are concerned). 

 

A starting paragraph without an indent that has the next-paragraph setting automatically switching to a paragraph style with an indent is the best way to go. Assign a simple keyboard shortcut to the starting paragraph, the formatting can be done mouse-free if that is your goal. The same general method can be done in Word too. 

 

Otherwise, you have to deal with an unprofessional, "ugly" work-around. 

 

David Creamer: Community Expert (ACI and ACE 1995-2023)

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Explorer ,
Aug 14, 2023 Aug 14, 2023

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I think I do 😉 it's oke. I just like to push the limits of automatisation. Al lot of books also start with indent were I want it to have no intent. For now I just ask the writer to use a tab that I can controle.

 

thanks for now. 

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Community Expert ,
Aug 14, 2023 Aug 14, 2023

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Okay, I profess to be completely baffled here. Is this the style/effect you are seeking to achieve?

 

JamesGiffordNitroPress_0-1692052334249.png

 


┋┊ InDesign to Kindle (& EPUB): A Professional Guide ┊ (Amazon) ┊┋

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Explorer ,
Aug 14, 2023 Aug 14, 2023

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Yes and after that create a new seperate paragraph that has some top indent that can have the same. So within a single paragraph a first non indent and the next indent. Than space and again the same. 

 

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Community Expert ,
Aug 14, 2023 Aug 14, 2023

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There is absolutely no reason to have that "indent" in the middle of a paragraph. None. This format, as has been explained several times, is done with two different styles in a row.

 

Just because some extremely inept writer is doing it that way in Word does not mean you have to be just as sloppy and inept when laying it out for them. And I'll leave it at that, other than to note you should really put some time into learning the very most basic methods of text layout, in ID or any other tool that plugs in.


┋┊ InDesign to Kindle (& EPUB): A Professional Guide ┊ (Amazon) ┊┋

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Explorer ,
Aug 14, 2023 Aug 14, 2023

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Wow wow wow. It was just a question. It was not the writer or anybody. It was me looking at other novels. Both appear. With and without on the first paragraph. It is just 300 pages so I can do it by hand. But it would be nice to do it automatically not?  

so I have my info. Sorry for being a noob. But please chill. 

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Community Expert ,
Aug 14, 2023 Aug 14, 2023

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You are correct--it's not uncommon for the first paragraph not to be indented. This is typically done with two paragraph styles, with the based-on and next-paragraph settings adjusted for maximum efficiency.

 

David Creamer: Community Expert (ACI and ACE 1995-2023)

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Explorer ,
Aug 14, 2023 Aug 14, 2023

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Thanks for sharing your knowledge. I think I have all the info I want. What is possible and what is not. 

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