Word Break and Indent Tips for InDesign & QuarkXPress

Sometimes, a word won’t hyphenate at the end of a line where YOU would like it to break. Rather than typing in a hyphen, which will flow along with the word if the line re-wraps, use a “discretionary hyphen”: an invisible character that tells your program to break and hyphenate a word at the end of a line when necessary — but to remove the hyphen if the word wraps to the next line.

To add a discretionary hyphen to a word in QuarkXPress, press Command-Hyphen where you want it to hyphenate. In InDesign, press Shift-Command-Hyphen where you want it to hyphenate.

To prevent a word from hyphenating at all, use the same keyboard shortcut, but use it just before the word: in QuarkXPress, press Command-Hyphen before the word; in InDesign, press Shift-Command-Hyphen before the word.

To break a word or sentence at the end of a line, without using a hyphen, press Shift-Return in either program.

To create a quick hanging indent in either program, go to the first line of the paragraph and press Command-backslash where you’d like the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, etc., lines to indent. This is known as the “indent here” character.

All these invisible characters can be removed later by backspacing over them.