Is there a way to make an aspect of a style sheet variable without creating a separate style sheet? For instance, if a title style sheet is followed by a subtitle style sheet, I might not use space after for the title. If it's not followed by a subtitle and I want space after, do I have to have a separate title style sheet to add space after? I'm doing a catalog, and there are variations of price listings, as well. Some use paragraph shading and others do not.
Does InDesign have any invisible characters that can add spacing, shading, etc. without creating a new style sheet?
Just to clarify the terms—a paragraph style describes the formatting for a paragraph, a style sheet is a collection of these (and other types of) styles.
In the situation you are describing, I would create a Title style with no Space After defined and two subtitle styles—Subtitle (that has Space Before defined) and SubtitleAfterTitle (based on Subtitle that does not have the Space Before defined). Or, you can just override the Subtitle style spacing when it follows a title. Spacing is best handled via styles, as is shading.
To help with streaming your workflow, be sure to base styles on a parent style. That way if you have to change the subtitles, or the price listing, you can change the parent style and the children styles will update as well:
The Based On option lets you link styles to each other, so that changes in one style ripple through the styles that are based on it. By default, new styles are based on [No Paragraph Style] for paragraph styles or [None] for character styles, or on the style of any currently selected text.
Thanks for the info Barb, especially correcting my use of "style sheet" with the community. I always thought the "sheet" part referred to all the info within that style.
I'm just seeing this now, but that is what I had already done, setting up two subtitles. Maybe the additional option when following another style will eventually be added to the paragraph settings the way Between Paragraphs was added.
>Does InDesign have any invisible characters
Sounds like you are referring to Character styles.
For your if/else formatting you need, you might want to look at a third-party plugin. Some companies to research are Em Software, Teacup Software, 65bit (not an exhaustive list).