For text variables for running headers/footers, the default behavior is as described in the help: "If there is no occurrence of the style on the page, the previous occurrence of the applied style is used." I've tried to create documents with both a header with the section name, justified away from the spine, and a header with the subsection name (de-emphasized by a tint) twoards the spine. Really great idea, but I just can't get it to work.
What you want is the subsection header to help you flip pages within a section and find the right subsection.
Problem is, my documents' sections don't all have subsections. And thus, the subsection header persists long past the end of the subsection. I've posted a feature request to be able to turn off the default persistence behavior.
I've tried a bunch of kludges and I'm about to give up. But there are some smart people here who come up with great kludges, so thought I would post this here. I use a "HeadText2" character style for the subsection header. I tried adding spaces at the end of various subsections which were formatted with the HeadText2 character style, (would result a blank subsection header which is as good a no subsection header) but the logic just didn't work out. For example, if a subsection ends on the top of the next page, and then another subsection starts, the header is blank which is not the desired result.
Any help welcomed.
This seems to be a two-part question:
I've tried to create documents with both a header with the section name, justified away from the spine, and a header with the subsection name (de-emphasized by a tint) twoards the spine. Really great idea, but I just can't get it to work.
So you want the section name on the left and the subsection name of the right of each page, or the spread? That's easy enough, and once you confirm, I'll be happy to explain how.
Problem is, my documents' sections don't all have subsections. And thus, the subsection header persists long past the end of the subsection.
The options in the order of my preference:
I guess I wasn't clear. I have the headers set up, no problem with that, see below.
The problem is with the persistence of the headers onto pages which don't have the subsection. See further below (orange tint is new material in the current draft). And this document really needs subsections in some sections, and no subsections in other sections. They vary quite a bit in size.
This document, though I want to use the format on other documents, is an organization's branding guide and I wanted to automate the headers, rather than doing a one-off each time, as the document changes frequently. Don't want to have to check every time to make sure something didn't flow onto a page formatted with a different master page. Or have to go through and insert a space formatted with HeadText2 on specific pages, only to have it mess up the headers when we add something to the document. I thought the dual headers was a nice touch that would make the document easier to use, but not if it doesn't work properly.
Thank you for the clarification. That addresses the first part—you know how to set running heads up.
You could explore scripting or plug-ins to see if someone has or will develop an alternative solution for you.
The only other option that will not necessitate standardizing the use of sub-sections, assigning different masters or using overrides is to break each section into its own document and pull them back together with an InDesign book. This will allow you to set the master page up as desired when you have subsections:
Use empty paragraphs tagged as subsections when you are in a section that doesn't use them:
And not encounter this situation as you transition from one section to another in the same file:
That said, I always counsel my students to design their documentation around an application's strengths, while actively avoiding the weaknesses, which you seem to understand with this sentence:
I thought the dual headers was a nice touch that would make the document easier to use, but not if it doesn't work properly.
It's not perfect, but here's a way to get subsection headings to work when some sections don't have subsections.
Use a character style for the portion of the section heading you want to appear in the header, for example, HeadText1. Use a different character style for the portion of the subsection heading you want to appear in the header, for example, HeadText2.
At the end of each section header without any subsections and only headers for sections without any subsections, add a space. Format that space with HeadText2.