Need to set a tab in my table of contents

Community Beginner ,
Oct 07, 2017 Oct 07, 2017

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Beginning InDesign user here with a focus on book design. Windows user.

I'm working on a collection of newspaper articles. Some of the article titles are too long, and I want them to move to a second line so that the page number stays right aligned with the second line.

In the above example, I'd like it to appear as something like

Between tears and rocket lectures, a nice

    family dinner                                                            54

Guilt gets modern mothers nowhere                           59

... where the second line of a long title is a hanging indent and the page number is flush right.

I can find nothing in my resource material that resolves this issue. Any guidance or suggestions would be appreciated.

Thank you.

Julie Klein

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 07, 2017 Oct 07, 2017

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I'm assuming that you have a right tab already set for the page numbers and are asking how to do the indent for the second line of an entry. That can be done using the Paragraph Panel.

Screen Shot 2017-10-07 at 9.16.58 PM.png

You would set a left indent for the entry and then a negative of that indent for the first line (see highlighted area above) of the entry. That way the first line of each entry would appear to have no indent while the second line would automatically indent. This can be included in a paragraph style which should also include the right tab for the page number. The simplest way to set this up is to set up one of the entries the way that you need it and while it is selected choose New Paragraph Style in the Paragraph Styles Pull-down menu. All of the attributes of the selected paragraph will be automatically included in this new style which you can then name and after clicking OK  apply to all of your entries.

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Community Beginner ,
Oct 07, 2017 Oct 07, 2017

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Thanks, Bill. That doesn't seem to work without adjusting the right margin at the same time. And if I do that, the page number moves away from the right-hand alignment. I appreciate your input, though.

I almost think I need to set up two columns, but I think that might mess up the TOC that draws from the chapter headings.

I'll keep trying ...

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 08, 2017 Oct 08, 2017

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There should be no need to set up any kind of right indent. You didn't say how you've set up your tab but if you follow the screen shot below combined with the one in my first post, it should work perfectly.

Screen Shot 2017-10-08 at 6.21.43 AM.png

The 4.36 that is entered in the "x" field is the exact width of the text frame. Note that you should be using a right tab for your page number.

One other thought is that each entry should be a paragraph ending with a hard return. For entries that must go to a second line you can use a soft return (a shift-return) to make the line break where you want it or you can just let it break itself when the text gets too long for the line.

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Community Beginner ,
Oct 08, 2017 Oct 08, 2017

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Thank you for clarifying.

Since it's a Table of Contents generated by InDesign, there is a right tab for the page number. However, in most TOCs where the chapter title extends to a second line, the first line does not extend to the full width of the text frame.

This is the way that it should be set up for two lines where

      there is a lot of copy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2

I am able to go into the TOC paragraph style to adjust as needed (including the hanging indent that you kindly explained), except for limiting the length of the first line of text. I'll try a soft return, next time I'm working in the document (tomorrow).

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 08, 2017 Oct 08, 2017

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Please let us know if it works out.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 08, 2017 Oct 08, 2017

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except for limiting the length of the first line of text. I'll try a soft return, next time I'm working in the document (tomorrow).

I wouldn't add soft returns to the TOC—it negates the auto-updating—or to the source files because you won't want  them in the same place for both locations. There's a feature in InDesign specifically for this situation—it's a last line right indent.

It sounds like you are already at this point:

Screenshot 2017-10-08 09.20.28.png

From here, add a right indent for the entire TOC (the entire right side moves in):

Screenshot 2017-10-08 09.20.45.png

Then add a negative last line right indent to push the numbers back out:

Screenshot 2017-10-08 09.20.54.png

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Community Beginner ,
Oct 08, 2017 Oct 08, 2017

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That's exactly what I'm trying to do! Thank you so much.

Julie

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Oct 08, 2017 Oct 08, 2017

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You are very welcome, Julie. I have no other reason to use a last-line right indent except for this one situation. Otherwise, it sits there all alone, just waiting for a multi-line TOC so that it can step in and save the day.

~Barb

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New Here ,
Dec 09, 2020 Dec 09, 2020

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Just following up on this, three years later...is there no way to do this within a paragraph style?

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