Access Special Characters from the Utilities Menu

In the bad old days (before QuarkXPress 7), if you wanted to use a special character such as “current page number” or “indent here” or “Em dash”, you had to be initiated into the secret order of the Keyboard Shortcut Keepers.

I exaggerate, but not much. There are approximately 1,547 keyboard shortcuts in QuarkXPress that don’t appear in the menus. (OK, now I’m exaggerating — but you get my point.) Some of the most important are shown here:

But more importantly, they’re now AVAILABLE here for you to select at any time. Just click in a text box with your Text tool and choose utilities> Insert Character, then pick one. And don’t overlook the Nonbreaking characters:

These little goodies will guarantee one of two things:

  • The nonbreaking En dash, Em dash and Hyphen will ensure that a hyphenated word or series of numbers will not break at the hyphen. This is useful in many circumstances, such as when an ambiguous meaning arises when the word is broken at the hyphen.
  • The nonbreaking spaces ensure that the spaces between a series of words will not break at the end of a line — the words will hyphenate if hyphenation is turned on, but the line will not break at a word space.