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Copying text with non breaking spaces from Word into Indesign

New Here ,
Apr 28, 2020

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Hey all,

I'm looking for a solution for the following problem: I'm working on Indesign files which need to be exactly the same but in different languages. My way of doing so is simply copy pasting one language over the other - paragraph by paragrpah- from Word into Indesign. My main problem is that by the process all the non breaking spaces set in the Word doc turn into normal spaces in Indesign as I insert the text.  Any tips how to keep them while copy pasting?

 

Thank you!

What I would do in your case is create an interim file in InDesign. I do this quite often when I receive Word files from clients that have all sorts of weird styles and fonts. I create a new blank ID document, just full pages (no columns or other layout design) then IMPORT the Word file into that and let it autoflow into as many pages as it needs. This will import all of the random styles into it, but will retain a lot more than what you would get by simply copying and pasting, including footnotes, etc. If you import YOUR paragraph/character styles from your English file (and you SHOULD be using styles), then you can apply them as necessary to your new "raw" file.  Then you can use the new "raw" file for your copy and paste routine into your new Spanish version. Also, make sure you apply a Spanish dictionary to any text you bring in, so that hyphenation is appropriate for it. You don't want to hypehnate Spanish with an English dictionary.

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Copying text with non breaking spaces from Word into Indesign

New Here ,
Apr 28, 2020

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Hey all,

I'm looking for a solution for the following problem: I'm working on Indesign files which need to be exactly the same but in different languages. My way of doing so is simply copy pasting one language over the other - paragraph by paragrpah- from Word into Indesign. My main problem is that by the process all the non breaking spaces set in the Word doc turn into normal spaces in Indesign as I insert the text.  Any tips how to keep them while copy pasting?

 

Thank you!

What I would do in your case is create an interim file in InDesign. I do this quite often when I receive Word files from clients that have all sorts of weird styles and fonts. I create a new blank ID document, just full pages (no columns or other layout design) then IMPORT the Word file into that and let it autoflow into as many pages as it needs. This will import all of the random styles into it, but will retain a lot more than what you would get by simply copying and pasting, including footnotes, etc. If you import YOUR paragraph/character styles from your English file (and you SHOULD be using styles), then you can apply them as necessary to your new "raw" file.  Then you can use the new "raw" file for your copy and paste routine into your new Spanish version. Also, make sure you apply a Spanish dictionary to any text you bring in, so that hyphenation is appropriate for it. You don't want to hypehnate Spanish with an English dictionary.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Apr 28, 2020

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Languages occupy different lengths so you need to consider that.

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New Here ,
May 06, 2020

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Oh yeah, I've met that problem. Normally I have to set Spanish, German, French etc a tiny bit smaller.

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Contributor ,
Apr 28, 2020

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You should be "Importing" Word files, not copy and pasting. What is copied to the clipboard will be just basic text content. When you Import, most of those formatting things will* import. (* the caveat is that, from personal experince, nonbreaking hyphens from the current Word DON'T import correctly for some reason; they used to in previous versions). The bigger question I have is why you are going to all this tedious work when you should just do all that formatting in InDesign anyway, if that's where your ultimate destination is. Just import the "raw" Word files, and go from there.

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New Here ,
May 06, 2020

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It went through my mind if there's a better solution, but couldn't come up with any. Imagine you have a 10 page Document in English, all pages have some graphics, character styles, paragraph styles, footnotes all set and you have the exact same text in Spanish in a Word doc (also kind of in a similar format so you know which page and paragraph is the equivalent to the English Indesign file, graphics a little broken and messy here and there). So basically you have to recreate that Indesign English file in Spanish, same page numbers, everything exactly the same. Even if tedious, this bit by bit copy pasting seemed the 'safest' but I'm definitely open to suggestions!

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Contributor ,
May 06, 2020

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What I would do in your case is create an interim file in InDesign. I do this quite often when I receive Word files from clients that have all sorts of weird styles and fonts. I create a new blank ID document, just full pages (no columns or other layout design) then IMPORT the Word file into that and let it autoflow into as many pages as it needs. This will import all of the random styles into it, but will retain a lot more than what you would get by simply copying and pasting, including footnotes, etc. If you import YOUR paragraph/character styles from your English file (and you SHOULD be using styles), then you can apply them as necessary to your new "raw" file.  Then you can use the new "raw" file for your copy and paste routine into your new Spanish version. Also, make sure you apply a Spanish dictionary to any text you bring in, so that hyphenation is appropriate for it. You don't want to hypehnate Spanish with an English dictionary.

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Contributor ,
Apr 28, 2020

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You might want to check your InDesign Preferences > Clipboard > When Pasting Text... setting. By default, it's "Text only". Toggle it to the other and see if that helps your issue.

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New Here ,
May 06, 2020

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Thanks for the tip! I'll try this out!

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