Q. I want to start a folder with the jokes I receive in my e-mails but would like to standardize their appearance. You know, change the fonts, get rid of tabs stops, etc. How would you do that? Also, is there an easy way to get rid of all those (>>) forwarding marks? I'm using Microsoft Word.
A. This sounds like fun, but a lot of work too. So that you don't have to go through numerous steps to change the appearance of each of your documents, you may want to create a new Style.
To start, open your Microsoft Word program then Minimize it by clicking on the minus (-) sign in the upper right corner (the one across from the words Microsoft Word). Next, open your e-mail program and click on Work Offline (in my e-mail program, this can be found under the File menu).
Select the first joke you would like to work with. If the joke is in an Attachment, open the Attachment first. To copy the joke, click on the Edit menu and then click Select All. Click on the Edit menu again and click Copy. If the joke was in an Attachment, close the Attachment. Now, Minimize your e-mail program. This puts both programs on the Taskbar (the area to the right of the Start button) so that to switch back and forth between the two programs you only have to click on its name on the Taskbar.
Click on Microsoft Word on the Taskbar, right-click in the document space and click on Paste to bring the joke onto the screen. Click on the File menu and then on Save As. The Save In box should read; My Documents, if not, click on the little down arrow and select it. Click on the New Folder Icon to create your new joke folder, type in a name and click OK. Now double-click on the your new folder to make it appear in the Save In box. Click in the File Name box and give this joke a File name. You might also want to add to the file name an Underscore ( _ ) and then the initials of who sent you the joke.
Next, in the Save as Type box, click on the little down arrow on the right and click on the file format; Word 6.0/95 (*.doc) to facilitate sharing files. Click Save.
Now, to create a new Style, click on the Format menu and click on Style, then click on the New button. On the New Style dialog box, type in a Name for this style. If you don't enter a new name, Word will overwrite the formatting of the original style. Press the Tab key on your keyboard to move to the Style Type box, select Paragraph as the type. Tab to the Based On box, click on the little down arrow and select Normal, or some other Style listed if you prefer (an example of each Style listed will be displayed). Tab to the Style for the Following Paragraph box and your new style name should appear.
In that same dialog box, click on the Format button at the bottom and then select Font. On the Font tab, use the little up and down arrows to view the different Fonts, Font styles, Sizes, and Effects available. As you click on the various selections, you can see how they will look in the Preview box below. After you have made your selections, click OK. On the New Style dialog box, be sure to check the Add to Template box or Word will only apply this Style to the current document. Click OK, then on the Style dialog box, click Apply.
You should have your Standard and Formatting Toolbars on the screen, if not, click on the View menu, click on Toolbars and select them. To apply your new Style to the current document, click on the Edit menu and then on Select All. Click on the Format menu and select Style. Under Style, click on the little down arrow to find and select your new Style, then click Apply. If you don't want to change all of the text in a joke, the Format Painter is a handy tool (that's the little paint brush icon on the Format Toolbar). First make sure that your new Style name is showing on the Format Toolbar, then click on the Format Painter Icon and while holding down the mouse button, drag the little paint brush over the text. Click outside the text to stop the Format Painter.
If you find that you need to remove Tab stops, that can be handled individually. If you are just removing one tab, you can click on it on the Ruler at the top of the document and holding the mouse button down, drag it off the Ruler then let go. If you don't have a Ruler at the top of your document, click on the View menu then click on Normal (you may also have to click on Ruler). If there are quite a few Tab stops to remove, click on the Format menu, click Tabs, click Clear All, and then click OK.
To get rid of the (>>) forwarding marks, click on the Edit menu, click on Find. On the Find tab, type just one (>) in the Find What box, then click on the Replace tab. In the Replace With box, leave it blank then click Replace All. You can use Find and Replace to get rid of any other repeated symbols, lines or characters.
Save your document one last time, then from the File menu click on Close. Click on the File menu again and click on New, select Blank Document and click OK. You are now ready to click on your e-mail program on the Taskbar and select the next joke. Remember to select your new Style from the Format Toolbar after doing a Paste and Select All of the entire joke in Word. Have a cool summer.
Send questions to: Click with Vera, Silver & Sage, c/o Nevada Appeal, P.O. Box 2288, Carson City, 89702.