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My Top 6 Shortcuts

Syllabus Montreal Translation Shortcuts-Flickr-David.July1. Getting rid of double spaces: If you had to find every double and triple space between sentences, you might go blind or crazy. Save yourself the time and headache by using my No. 1 Word feature, Find and Replace. First, open the Find and Replace window (Ctrl + h), then type two spaces after Find what and one space after Replace with. Next, click Replace All and then click it again. Repeat until it says “Word has completed its search and made 0 replacements.” If you only click it once, it won’t get rid of triple or quadruple spaces. Thanks to Ruth E. Thaler-Carter for this one.

2. F7: This spell-check shortcut may seem like a no-brainer, but if you forget to run it, you just might lose some clients. Keep it in your Top 5 and you’ll sleep easy at night.

3. Ctrl + F6: No matter how big the screen is—it’s never big enough. I always have multiple Word docs open at the same time and it’s a waste of time minimizing and maximizing them—plus all that mousing can cause wrist pain. This simple shortcut lets you jump from style sheet to manuscript at the click of a key.

4. Ctrl + z and Ctrl + y: For the utterly indecisive editor, these undo-redo key strokes are indispensable!

5. Toggle for viewing tracked changes in MS Word: When I’m editing, I like to see the changes I’m making every so often, but I can’t make heads or tails of a sentence with all that nonsense in the way. Now, with one easy shortcut, you can hop between them. (Warning: toggling may become addictive.) Thanks go to the Subversive Copy Editor for this handy tip. Click here for easy set-up instructions. It’s two minutes you won’t regret wasting.

6. Getting rid of those pesky formatting bubbles: Here’s the deal. I want my editing comments in margin bubbles, but I don’t want to see all those bloody formatting bubbles. (If you’re a translator and you’ve changed the language of a doc, then you know that the formatting bubbles can be out of control when you go to edit it.) Sure, you can turn them off while you’re working in a doc, but when you reopen or send it to the client—the formatting bubbles reappear like a bad case of the mumps. Here’s how you can keep them turned off right from the get-go.

Got to the Review tab

Click the down arrow under the Track Changes tool

Click Change Tracking Options

A dialogue box will open. Untick Track Formatting (under Formatting)

Click OK

If you do want to indicate that you’ve made a formatting change, such as italics or bold, you can just make a comment. I find it’s easier for the client to read anyhow.

© David July, Flickr

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