Monthly Archives: June 2016

Five ways to drive and increase engagement with your blog

Five ways to drive and increase engagement with your blog

My viewing figures have gone down. No one is buying my books at the moment. Who wants to start a new business at a time like this? Well, here are five pointers to driving and increasing (or maybe, at the moment, maintaining) engagement with your blog. And here I am doing number five right now …

5. Publish more blog posts

The search engines like you to have regularly updated content, to make sure they’re not sending people to an out-of-date source of information. I find the sweet spot comes at around three posts per week. They don’t have to be long. Try mixing things up with different subjects or types of article.

4. Share useful information

One of the most-viewed of my blog posts is still one I wrote as a note for myself in 2011 on how to sort out a problem with Word. Still gets those hits, even now – and thank you comments.

3. Seek engagement

Ask questions. Put those share buttons on your blog (here’s how to do that in WordPress) and ask people to share if they found it useful.

2. Add Like buttons to comments on your posts

I love this feature of WordPress (and here’s how to do it) – if you Like as well as reply to comments, your reader will be alerted and should get a good feeling about you. If you don’t have time to reply right away, a Like will let them know you’ve read and appreciated their comment.

1. Reply to comments on your blog posts

I read a lot of blogs. If I put a comment on a blog post and the original commentator doesn’t respond to it, I feel ignored. I’ve talked about this at length on posts about reciprocity in social media (including blogs). I really try to reply to comments on my blogs within 24 hours; if I can’t do it quickly, at least I’ll “Like” the comment. Personally, if I read and comment on a blog and never get any acknowledgement, first I’ll stop commenting, then I’ll be less likely to read it. So I assume other people are like me and will do the same. Of course there are reasons why people can’t reply to blog comments temporarily, or don’t see some of them, but if it’s a constant feature, lots of comments with no replies, I’ll tend to lose interest.

I hope these ideas have been useful to you and help you to drive more engagement on your own blogs!


Posted by on June 29, 2016 in Blogging, WordPress


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Small business chat update – Leigh-Ann Arundel

Small business chat update – Leigh-Ann Arundel

Welcome to another Small Business Update – today with Leigh-Ann Arundel, who launched Jingle Jewellery in April 2012 – I first interviewed her under a year later, in January 2013, and then again in January 2014, with the most recent update in March 2015. At that point she had expanded into a locket business and also some franchises for Jingle Jewellery, and at that point she said, “In another year’s time I am hoping that the jewellery party business will still be maintaining speed and the new business will be up and running”. I love Leigh-Ann’s flexibility and willingness to try new things, something I think is vital in a new business – or even a long-standing one. So, let’s see how she’s doing.

Hello again, Leigh-Ann! Are you where you thought you’d be when you looked forward a year ago?

This year has been a hectic one. There has been a lot of upheaval in the day job and as such it’s been more difficult to focus on my businesses. I set up a new business with a friend and fellow small business holder and that also taken a lot of time. So Jingle has definitely taken a back seat this year.

What has changed and what has stayed the same?

I am now only operating in South Yorkshire and North Yorkshire. The licence holders in Cumbria and Mansfield had life changes that resulted in them no longer being able to continue with Jingle. I have not pursued anymore licence holders as I have improved my work-life balance. There is room for growth within Jingle but it will have to wait for now.

Our new business is called Pug4Pets (Personalised, Unique Gifts 4 Pets) and is a pet marketplace. I joined forces with Jo Ballantine, who is a graphic designer and owns the Driven by Design Ltd and Grace & Flo design companies. We launched in July last year and sell floating lockets for pets exclusively within the UK alongside jewellery and graphic designed cards and printed products. The lockets have been through a period of testing and have been made especially for use and for purpose. We crowdfunded the launch, which was a great experience as I have never done anything like that before. We are now busy getting the business onto different selling platforms in preparation for the busy Christmas period. The business is led by pets and the company is ‘run’ by dogs and cats who have their own profiles. It’s a really lovely project and it is coming along slowly but nicely. I have also started importing aromatherapy lockets into the UK and am selling them alongside Maria from Chi-Ki Holistics. She supplies the flower remedies and aromatherapy so we have a well-being package.  We have a lot of interest in these.

What have you learned? What do you wish you’d known a year ago?

I have continued to not spread myself too thin. Also move on from things that are not beneficial to the business. I bought a 3D printer thinking I could make it part of the business.  However, it took up too much time and would not make a profit so I sold it on. I am also reducing my stock as I hold lots. Another thing I am doing is being more prepared. My angels continue to be popular alongside my children’s jewellery. As such I have been stockpiling these in readiness. I will also be doing this with my snowmen kits. This should mean less to do at Christmas.

Any more hints and tips for people?

I really enjoy working with other business holders. I see a lot of energy being placed in what other people are doing and competitiveness on the crafting circuit. I think that is pointless. Everyone is different and working together makes much more sense. Consider how you can help each other and encourage that. Also know when to stop buying! I struggle with this myself!

BONUS NEW QUESTION: What question would YOU like to ask other small business owners?

I would like to know how they maintain visibility in such a large marketplace. I often find this bit hard.

And … where do you see yourself and your business in a(nother) year’s time?

I am resigned to the fact that I need to remain in the day job for 5 more years. After that I will be able to leave and fully concentrate on my businesses.

I think for now Jingle will probably just plod along, but I hope to have had a great year with the lockets and especially PUG4PETS. We hope to be selling on Not on the High Street by then. Fingers crossed!

I totally agree with Leigh-Ann about concentrating less on competition and more on cooperation. When I’m too busy to take on a new project, I am so pleased when I can recommend a great alternative supplier for them, and Leigh-Ann’s way of working with her craft and design colleagues works really well for all of them. I’m looking forward to find out what she does next!

You can find Jingle Jewellery Ltd online at and on Facebook, with Pug4Pets at and on Facebook, too.

If you’ve enjoyed this interview, please see more small business chat, the index to all the interviewees, and information on how you can have your business featured (I have a full roster of interviewees now so am only taking on a very few new ones). If you’re considering setting up a new business or have recently done so, why not take a look at my books, all available now, in print and e-book formats, from a variety of sources. 


Posted by on June 25, 2016 in Business, Small Business Chat


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Small business chat update – Stephen Tiano

Small business chat update – Stephen Tiano

Welcome to another Small Business Update – and today we welcome Stephen Tiano from Tiano Book Design to the blog for the fifth time! His original (2012) and 2013 posts told us all about his double life working in the civil service and then doing book design in the rest of his time, and when we caught up with him in April 2014 he was planning a move. By May 2015 he had even bigger plans – to retire from his day job and take up book designing full time! Here’s where he wanted to be by now: “Hopefully, increasing the activity in my book design practice. If all goes according to plan, I hope to retire from the civil service 9-to-5 and, with my wife, relocate off Long Island and out of New York to someplace milder in the U.S.—northern California (near where our granddaughters live with their mom and dad) or perhaps somewhere on the east coast around D.C./Maryland/Virginia/North Carolina, in a university town, where I can perhaps catch on for just a little in-house work at a university press and a whole lot of golf.” So, how’s he getting on? Did he manage to retire and relocate?

Hello, again, Stephen, and lovely to talk to you again. So, how’s it going? Did you retire? Are you where you thought you’d be when you looked forward a year ago?

Not at all, Liz. I figured I’d be spending the better part of this first year after retiring from the 9-to-5 job as a court clerk that I held for over 32 years into my book design practice full-time pretty strictly on promoting and marketing myself. I always say that I “freelanced with a net”—i.e., while holding a secure full-time job. That served me well, as I apparently spent 25 years on just about 100 books simply developing my practice and it was just the lead-up to my going at this and this alone.

Curiously, it appears that merely stating my commitment to going full-time somehow—and I admit that this may sound a bit airy-fairy to some—signaled a new vacuum in my schedule that seems to have sucked work into it. A lot of work. Turns out this is the busiest first quarter of my freelance career, so far.

What has changed and what has stayed the same?

Considering that I have worked just about exclusively for self-publishing authors the last seven or eight years, there is a definite consistency to my business. But the turn is that all of them have formed publishing companies. And that kind of underscores what I’ve been saying for a few years now: Choosing to self-publish is a choice to go into business as a publisher, even if just one time for one book.

One giant surprise is how much of my business consists of children’s books these days. It’s ironic, too, because there was a time when I wanted to work on children’s books so that I could show them to my grandchildren, two granddaughters at the time. And I couldn’t even get a nibble, but for one in my first 23 or so years designing and laying out books.

The last year, however, has seen me work on the book When My Baba Died and an accompanying workbook, as well as taking on Creative Director duties, for Pascha Press; Don’t Feed Your Pets Weird Stuff for Mascot Press; and Bell Meets the B.EL.L. Pack, the first of a series about blended families for Bellpack LLC.

Now, for all the busyness, one neverending challenge for me that remains is that I will always go through periods of waiting. Patience not being my strong suit, I claw the walls at such times. Right now, I thankfully still have a book in progress, Brave in Leather, the story of a transgender woman who faces challenges but finds happiness for Angry Rabbit Enterprises. That’s after sending off Gear Up for Success: A Three-Tiered Planning Model for Supporting Learners on the Autism Spectrum to my client, AAPC Publishing.

But I’m waiting for a second book on autism from AAPC Publishing—to be fair, as I write this, that one should arrive tomorrow. However that leaves the second in the Bell Pack series of children’s storybooks. A change in illustrators—the one who did such fine work in the first book has retired from freelance work—has slowed things a little. There is also a book, translations of critiques of Beethoven’s works, coming by summer’s end … hopefully sooner. The last one that I know of right now is a book, a kind of recap of one man’s career in sports agenting.

And I am certain there will be more, including some surprises.

What have you learned? What do you wish you’d known a year ago?

No matter how busy I get, do not ever think the time for self-promotion has reached an absolute end. There will no doubt come a time when I am waiting for the next paying project with nothing yet on the way. That will be the time when it pays to have interviews such as this or guestblog pieces ready to go. Then, too, there’s my own blog on book design ( Though my writing for it has been sporadic over the years, I always come back to it, when I have something longish to say about book design or freelancing.

I suppose I would have liked knowing a year ago that my freelancing would pick up once I went at it full-time. Yet I am enjoying the surprise of how it’s almost magically taken off, now hat I have more time for it.

I’ve had it driven home yet again that the best-looking ideas don’t necessarily make for success. Pascha Press, for whom I’d been named Creative Director and handled design and layout of When My Baba Died and the accompanying workbook, just announced they will close their doors. At least one or two versions in other languages were planned; and now that won’t happen. Although well-received, I guess not enough copies were sold. Too bad. I would have liked to see how their catalog developed over time.

Any more hints and tips for people?

Do not forget the value of social media. Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are musts. Post to all of them regularly. Don’t make those posts all, “Buy me; buy me! Hire me; hire me!” all the time. Make an effort to help people out with what they’d like to know about book design and production.

BONUS NEW QUESTION: What question would YOU like to ask other small business owners?

Retired from my 9-to-5, I collect a pension. But there is also the issue of collecting Social Security. There are limits on how much income one may earn before penalties (givebacks of $1 for every $2 over the year’s stated limit) kick in. How would you handle that? Not collect social security until the age (70) at which there are no income limits? Collect but stop earning each year just before going over the limit? Charge less so you don’t ever go over the limit? Or simply go over and pay the penalties?

And … where do you see yourself and your business in a(nother) year’s time?

Well, I’d be okay to be as busy as I am now, with as much work waiting in the wings. I’d be happy to have more. I think for the first time I expect to be busier, to have grown and expanded.

Here’s hoping!

I did watch Stephen’s progress with a wry smile, because I predicted that this would happen. I didn’t retire as such, or wouldn’t call it that, but when I left my part-time day job, I, too, was expecting a lull where I promoted myself. Ironically enough, I was called for Jury Service for the first two weeks of my full-time self-employment (but didn’t end up doing much) and from then on, I was busy, busy, busy, with work definitely expanding to fill the space available, almost by magic! So I predicted this and it happened, and I’m so pleased! Here’s to the next year, to growth and expansion! By the way, I think the extra bonus question is quite US-centric, so if any readers are in the US or have freelancer chums who are, please point them to this and/or comment yourself!

Stephen Tiano
Book Designer, Page Compositor & Layout Artist

tel. & fax: (631)284-3842 / cell: (631)764-2487
Skype: stephentianobookdesigner
FaceTime: Stephen Tiano
email  website:
blog  Twitter  Facebook

If you’ve enjoyed this interview, please see more small business chat, the index to all the interviewees, and information on how you can have your business featured (I have a full roster of interviewees now so am only taking on a very few new ones). If you’re considering setting up a new business or have recently done so, why not take a look at my books, all available now, in print and e-book formats, from a variety of sources. 


Posted by on June 18, 2016 in Business, Small Business Chat


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Very Basic Trados Studio 2014

I’ve written this post primarily to help myself work with Trados translation software (and the screenshots are with the permission of my client). However, one of my most popular posts ever was written for that purpose and gets hundreds of hits a day, years later, so I’m making this public in case it can help other people!

So, this is about the very basics of importing a package into Trados, opening the package and its files, editing the files, doing things like spell check and sending it back. I may well update this as I do more processes. Note this is from the point of view of someone who edits the English translations of texts, so I’m in Review mode. Other experiences may differ.

Importing packages

This doesn’t always work from double-clicking the file you’re sent.

Open Trados, go to the Projects tab, click on Open Package:

1 open package

Choose your package and it will come up in a dialogue window: click Finish:

1a finish

Then click close to get back to the main menus:

1b close

Look at the files you have and edit them

Go to the Files tab and you can see all the files in the package.

If the package contains subfolders then when you go to the files screen you won’t see any files or folders. You need to look at Project folders in the left-hand navigation to see any open folders [Thanks to Vikki for this info].

2 open files

Right-click for the contextual memory, and choose Open for Review. This will open the Edit view

3 open for review

Getting back to Edit

If you come out of Edit, click on the Editor tab and there’s the file you’re working on:

5 when you want to edit

Finishing the edit

When you’ve finished editing, click File (top tabs) and Close. This box will come up:

5a close edit

Choose yes.

Changing the font size

If the font is really small, go to the View tab (top tab), look to the right, click Font Adaptation Options then change the minimum sizes to 11 or more. This will change the size of the font in your editing screen.

7 change font

Running spell check

You can find spell check in the Review tab (top tabs) under Quality Assurance – if your window isn’t really wide, it will appear under the drop-down arrow.

4 spell check

You can get to find and replace using Ctrl-F and they work as in other packages.

Auto filling identical segments in Review mode is apparently not consistent so don’t expect to be able to do that in this mode.

Creating a return package

Save the edits (Save icon) Then go out of Editor into Projects and click Create Return Package

6 create return package

Choose where you want to save the file and then remember to click Finish.

6a Finish return package



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Posted by on June 15, 2016 in Localisation, Trados


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Small business chat update – Debbie Copas

Small business chat update – Debbie Copas

Welcome to another Small Business Update with Debbie Copas from Norfolk Coastal Holidays. We originally met Debbie in March 2013, and had our first update in March 2014, and second one in May 2015. At that point, this was her plan for the upcoming year: “I will have had the first year of managing the other property under my belt. I’d like to hope that I may have a second property to manage but I won’t pin any hopes on it. I really hope I will have finally had that logo designed and have some lovely glossy leaflets and business cards to hand. I’m still building on my Google page, so plan to learn more about using this to bring more traffic to my site. I also started a blog alongside my new website; I had great intentions and started well, but getting flu twice over Christmas and the New Year really knocked me back so I’m still playing catch up with so many areas of life! So I must blog at least once a month as a minimum.” Let’s see how she’s getting on!

Hello again, Debbie, and at the start of the holiday season, it’s lovely to be able to feature you again. Are you where you thought you’d be when you looked forward a year ago?

Not quite, but that’s because life throws curved balls and we always react and respond to them.

I’m not sure anyone has really ever answered “yes” to that question! What has changed and what has stayed the same?

I’m still looking after my own two properties and managing one other. The odd opportunity for other properties has come along but for one reason or another they haven’t fallen into place. I haven’t achieved getting a logo, or printed material or my other goals from last year, but they haven’t been so critical to the success of my business, hence they went on the back burner. I will get to them; I may potentially become an empty-nester later this year as all three of my children have plans to fly the nest. If I find myself with a lot more time on my hands, I will have no excuse not to focus more on certain aspects of my business! I have written a few blog posts but it’s sporadic, however I have set up a Mailchimp newsletter that sends links to my blog posts out once a month if I have written something that month.

Changes have included spending a great deal of time on Facebook groups, especially as an admin of one, but it has resulted in achieving a lot of business via that method. Nearly 20% of my bookings came via Facebook in the last year.  I also created a group for holiday home owners that has been very successful. It has become my virtual office where we swap useful hints and tips, but also pick each other up when things go wrong. It’s been great for networking and I have met in person several owners that I initially met online. I have also recently started an Instagram account. I’m not sure how good it is for business purposes, but I love browsing the gorgeous photos posted there and of course a holiday business lends itself to pretty pictures!

What have you learned? What do you wish you’d known a year ago?

My lesson has been a philosophical one, relating to getting older. Sadly, my brother-in-law died from cancer very quickly, which was a huge shock, so family came above everything at that point. A friend turned 50, and being a young widow herself, we planned, and have just come back from, an amazing trip to USA to visit her son who is at university there. It was a wonderful experience and I’m so pleased I had the chance to do it. It took a fair bit of planning and I had to ensure I was as up to date with my work as possible before going so I could actually have real time off, but it means I’m now in catch-up mode. I’ve learned life is short and we must make the most of every opportunity we can, to embrace and enjoy our relationships with others as much as possible.

Any more hints and tips for people?

I like the philosophy and book “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff” written by Richard Carlson. It’s easy to get caught up into little details, but it’s often the bigger picture that we should look at. What’s your end goal? Will it make you happy? Does running your business fulfil you? I think I have the answer to all these and generally the answer is a positive one. I do enjoy my business, although it’s a challenge when things get broken as has happened this week. I’m about to visit one of my properties to replace a smashed ceramic hob. However it was an accident and these things happen, so it’s my job to get it sorted.

BONUS NEW QUESTION: What question would YOU like to ask other small business owners?

I’m a procrastinator. What do you do to motivate yourself and achieve things that you’d otherwise happily let slip down your to do list?

And … what’s your plan for the upcoming year?

I am just embarking on a 100 day challenge; my goal is to get my accounts up to date and then put in place a system to ensure I complete all necessary tasks on a monthly basis. I’m fed up with the annual rush in January to get things up to date! If I achieve that, I plan on rewarding myself with an online course to learn more about creating a travel guide. I hope I will be making more regular visits to Norfolk (assuming my youngest gets to University) and being more proactive in looking for properties to add to my portfolio. Maybe I will have achieved last year’s goals too, with a logo and so on, but I won’t beat myself up if I haven’t. Life’s too short!

A very good attitude and some good learning points there, too. I don’t think we should beat ourselves up if we don’t achieve what we set out to achieve, as long as we’re moving forward and keeping happy. I love that Debbie has had the flexibility to explore new avenues, like the Facebook group and Instagram, with one of those already giving rewards, and she took a holiday! Hooray – that’s always an achievement for the self-employed person!





If you’ve enjoyed this interview, please see more small business chat, the index to all the interviewees, and information on how you can have your business featured (I have a full roster of interviewees now so am only taking on a very few new ones). If you’re considering setting up a new business or have recently done so, why not take a look at my books, all available now, in print and e-book formats, from a variety of sources. 


Posted by on June 11, 2016 in Business, Small Business Chat


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How do I change a column into a row or a row into a column in Excel 2007, 2010 and 2013?

In this article, I’m going to explain how to change a column into a row or change a row into a column in Excel 2007, 2010 and 2013 (I think this works in 2016 too but have not yet tested it).

Why would I want to swap a column for a row?

You might start off creating a header row then decide it should be a column, or create a spreadsheet then want to rotate it 90 degrees. Or, worse, someone might decide that for you and expect you know how to do it!

How to change a column into a row or rotate a block of cells

Here’s our original block of cells:

Swap excel rows for columns

We want to turn this around so that everything runs along the top rather than down the side. Here’s how to do it:

First, copy all the cells you want to move:

Highlight the cells, right-click with the mouse, and select Copy:

copying cells in excel

Now, and this is important, find a free, empty cell to paste into. Don’t worry about it being in the middle of the spreadsheet, we will tidy that later.

Right-click with your mouse in an empty cell and then choose Paste Special and Transpose (a hint will appear when you hover over the button, but it’s the one on the bottom right)

How do I swap columns and rows in Excel

Behind all those dialogue boxes, Excel will show you what this is going to look like.

Click on Transpose and your cells will appear, starting from the empty cell you clicked on:

swapped columns and rows

Your original cells are still there – so highlight their columns, right-click with the mouse and choose Delete:

Flipped cells in Excel

And here’s your spreadsheet, the opposite way around from how you started!

5 finished

In this article, we’ve learned how to change rows into columns and change columns into rows in Excel 2007, 2010, 2013 and probably 2016.

If you’ve found this article helpful, please do post a comment below, and if you think others would find it useful, please share it using the sharing buttons below the article. Thank you!

Other useful posts on Excel on this blog:

How to view two workbooks side by side in Excel 2007 and 2010

How to view two pages of a workbook at the same time

How do I print the column headings on every sheet in Excel?

How to print the column and row numbers/ letters and gridlines

Freezing rows and columns in Excel – and freezing both at the same time

How to flip a column in Excel – turn it upside down but keep the exact same order!


Posted by on June 8, 2016 in Excel, Short cuts


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Small business chat update – Dick Margulis

Small business chat update – Dick Margulis

Welcome to another Small Business Update – and today we’re catching up with Dick Margulis of Dick Margulis Creative Services an editing (and more) colleague, who we first met in February 2012, and then again in March 2013, March 2014 and May 2015 when this was his succinct plan for the year: “Keeping on keeping on”. You can’t get clearer than that, and I think that’s something a lot of us more established freelancers and small business owners consider a good plan! Let’s see how he’s doing a year and a bit since that last chat …

Hello again, Dick! So, are you where you thought you’d be when you looked forward a year ago?

I’m still doing what I always wanted to do and enjoying every minute of it. I fell in love with well-formed sentences and the magic of typography as a boy and dreamed of being able to make books for a living for decades before the advent of cheap technology made it possible. I love what I do and just want to keep doing it. So yes, I’m where I thought I’d be and where I think I’ll continue to be.

What has changed and what has stayed the same?

What stays the same is constant learning—learning about wide-ranging subjects from the books I edit; learning about working with different sorts of clients and the situations they present; discovering new techniques. What has changed is that I’m doing more teaching—speaking to larger audiences and bigger conferences; taking on an eager student as an intern—in an effort to pass on a typographic tradition that is no longer taught in colleges or trade schools or by apprenticeship, so that it shouldn’t die out altogether.

What have you learned? What do you wish you’d known a year ago?

For as long as I’ve been doing this kind of work, I still learn new things every day. I really believe that the day you stop learning is the day you start dying. Can I catalog the last year’s learnings? I don’t want to take the time. There’s so much more to learn this year.

Any more hints and tips for people?

Stay curious.

BONUS NEW QUESTION: What question would YOU like to ask other small business owners?

Are you ready to publish a book?

And … where do you see yourself and your business in a(nother) year’s time?

Y’know, I’ve been talking about our cohousing project for so long, saying that this would be the year we finally moved in, that I’m thinking I’m going to give the project the code name Jerusalem. As in “next year in Jerusalem.” <sardonic_laugh />

I love Dick’s constant search for new information and learning and ability to embrace new ideas. How wonderful that he’s taking time out to teach someone in the next generation the skills he knows, too – that something he’s loved since he was a child is being passed along. Good luck for that move, too, Dick!

You can find Dick Margulis here:

Dick Margulis Creative Services
284 West Elm Street
New Haven, Connecticut 06515
+ 1 (203)389-4413 office
+ 1 (203)464-3199 mobile (site) (blog)

If you’ve enjoyed this interview, please see more small business chat, the index to all the interviewees, and information on how you can have your business featured (I have a full roster of interviewees now so am only taking on a very few new ones). If you’re considering setting up a new business or have recently done so, why not take a look at my books, all available now, in print and e-book formats, from a variety of sources. 


Posted by on June 4, 2016 in Business, Small Business Chat


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What do I do when Word just won’t work (Word 2005, 2007, 2010, 2013 and 2016 edition)

Word 2010 Word 2016 Word 2013

Sometimes, Word gets itself into a pickle

People often contact me, either using the comments on blog posts or privately via email or my contact form, when they’re at the end of their tether with Word. Word has stopped working, Word won’t do what they want it to, the formatting in their document has gone weird, putting something in italics makes the overwrite button engage, the paragraph spacing just will not work, paragraphs keep going into bold BY THEMSELVES …

All of these things have happened to me or my correspondents.

Why does Word go wrong?

I’m not entirely sure why Word goes wrong. I think it sometimes just gets itself into a pickle; there are too many things, too many commands and codes, too much text … or the originating text comes from an unofficial or unregistered copy of Word, or has been converted from another program. Sometimes if something’s saved as and saved as, or worked over too much, like overworked pastry, it just. goes. wrong.

What do you do when Word goes wrong?

Well, I have three methods, which are not nice, and are certainly not fun, but do work most of the time. And as the latest person to contact me didn’t know about these, I’m going to share them with you now.

Before you do any of these, save your document and then make a copy to do all this with, just in case.

Method for sorting out major Word problems 1

  • Turn it off and turn it on again.

I know. But if Word gets into a pickle, sometimes SAVING, closing Word and reopening it can work.

Method for sorting out major Word problems 2

  • Copy the text – all of it.
  • Open a brand new Word document
  • Paste the text into it

This works in about 70% of cases.

Method for sorting out major Word problems 3

This one involves stripping out all the formatting. All your italics and your lovely bibliography. All your headings and styles. But sometimes it has to be done.

Note: There is a Clear formatting button in Word (in the Home tab, a little picture of an eraser rubbing out an ABC). But you don’t know that there isn’t something weird just outside where you’ve put the cursor. So I advise using this method.

  • Copy the text – all of it
  • Open a text editor
    • If you’re on a PC running any form of Windows, you will have Notepad as standard.
      • In Windows 7 do Start > All Programs > Notepad
      • In Windows 8 hit the Windows button > R > type in “Notepad”
      • In Windows 10 go to the magnifying glass in the bottom task bar and type in “Notepad”
  • Paste the text into the text editor
  • Open a new Word document
  • Copy and paste the text in the text editor into Word

It can literally not bring ANY formatting codes or bits and bobs through from your original document. But you will have to put all the formatting in again, from scratch.

I hope you’re found this useful. I know it might read like a bit of a blunt instrument, but if you have a Word document that is not behaving itself and you need to make Word work for you, sometimes this is the only way to do it!

If you have found this useful, do please comment and / or share using the options below. Thank you!



Posted by on June 2, 2016 in Short cuts, Word


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