We all run into overset text on a regular basis — your text boxes are all in place, and then the imported text is too long to fit. What do we do then? Adjust the tracking, scaling, point size, leading, or whatever is necessary to make it fit.
That takes up lots of time and energy, so if you would prefer to get on to more fulfilling tasks, check out Meadows Publishing Solutions’ CopyFit. This $225 XTension for QuarkXPress 4/5/6/7/8 automates the process of adjusting these attributes, repeating the adjustments if necessary, until the text fits the box (or chain of boxes).
Note that the adjustments are ranked in the order you prefer them to occur, and have a “Step” amount — the increment CopyFit will use to increase or decrease the attribute on each cycle. It includes 10 presets that you can customize to work best with your own publications, or you can create your own and save them for later use. Each box in your layout can be tagged with its own set of unique CopyFit settings, and the tagged boxes can be CopyFit at any time.
CopyFit can be set to run automatically at vital times, such as when Saving, Printing, or Exporting as EPS. There’s even a server version that integrates with QuarkDDS, Quark’s server version of the QuarkXPress publishing engine. This makes it possible to automatically generate Web, print, or even mobile layouts, and automatically fit the text to the space.
If you spend any time at all fitting text to boxes, I believe this XTension will pay for itself in just a few uses — after that, it’s cash in your pocket. Read all about it at the MPS website, or in this X-Ray Magazine article.
Jay Nelson is the editorial director of PlanetQuark.com, and the editor and publisher of Design Tools Monthly. He’s also the author of the QuarkXPress 8 and QuarkXPress 7 training titles at Lynda.com, as well as the training videos Quark includes in the box with QuarkXPress 7 . In addition, Jay writes regularly for Macworld and Photoshop User magazines and speaks at industry events.