Building Blocks

The Building Blocks feature, which includes AutoText, is a useful tool to insert blocks of information in Word. You can even make building blocks available on the Quick Parts menu in the Insert tab of the ribbon for easy access. The following articles discuss what you can do with building blocks to store and re-use content in documents.

Tips, Tricks, and Answers

The following articles are available for the 'Building Blocks' topic. Click the article''s title (shown in bold) to see the associated article.

   Backing Up Building Blocks
Got a lot of Building Blocks defined in Word? You can back them up rather easily, but first you need to figure out where they are.

   Changing Defaults for Text Boxes and Callouts
Do you find yourself frequently creating text boxes and callouts? This tip describes how to change the default settings and how you can easily create text boxes that exactly meet your common requirements.

   Creating a Building Block
Creating custom Building Block entries is not only extremely helpful, but very easy. This tip explains how.

   Defining Protected Sections as a Building Block
Building Blocks can be very useful in creating documents from standard parts and pieces. But what if the text you want to use when creating a Building Block is protected and you want it to remain protected when you paste it into Word? This tip explains this concept and its limitations.

   Deleting an AutoText Building Block
At some point you may want to delete an AutoText entry you previously created. Here's the steps to follow.

   Deleting Multiple Building Blocks
Building Blocks can be a powerful timesaver when developing your documents. Being able to delete multiple Building Blocks can be critical to managing them efficiently, but Word doesn't include this capability. Here are some ideas you can apply.

   Editing a Building Block Entry
Once you've created a Building Block, you may believe that it is "set in stone" and cannot be changed. Not so! You can redefine it very easily using the steps in this tip.

   Extra Spaces after Inserting a Building Block
Building blocks are a great tool for inserting standard information in your documents. It is also possible, however, to get results that you don't quite expect from the building blocks you create. Attention to the smallest details can be important, as exemplified in this tip.

   Formatting a Company Name
Want your company name to always appear in a particular formatted manner? Word provides two ways you can approach the task, as described in this tip.

   Getting the Proper Type of Ellipses
Type three periods in a row, and the AutoCorrect feature in Word kicks in to exchange that sequence for a special ellipses character. If you don't like the ellipses that Word uses, you can define your own using any number of methods.

   Moving Building Block Templates
Not all templates are created equal. Word uses two special templates for storing building blocks. If you want to move those special templates to a location of your choosing, you may be in for more work than you anticipated.

   Moving Building Blocks
Building blocks are a sort of "extended" AutoText introduced in Word 2007. As you work with building blocks, you may wonder how you can move them from one template to another. This tip explains what you can do and how you can do it.

   Printing a List of Building Blocks
Building Blocks are a great way to semi-automate the creation of common documents. At some point you may want to get a printed list of all your Building Blocks, for reference purposes.

   Quick Recall of Table Formats
Got a table that you use over and over again? One way you can make quick work of such repetition is to save the table in a Building Block entry. This tip shows how easy this is.

   Quickly Inserting the Date Your Way
Tired of messing with inserting the date and then changing it to a format that is more to your liking? There's a quick way you can set up Word to allow you to enter dates in just the manner that you want, as described in this tip.

   QuickWords in Word
WordPerfect users coming to Word may miss a feature called QuickWords. This tip examines some ways you can get around the lack of this feature in Word.

   Replacing All Building Blocks
Word's Building Blocks can be a great tool to improve your productivity when writing. Depending on the type of writing you do, you may need a way to periodically replace all your Building Blocks with a new set of entries. Here are some ideas on how you can accomplish this task.

   Specifying a Default Building Block Location
When you create a Building Block in Word, it is saved in a particular location by default. If you want to change that default you may be out of luck, but that is not necessarily a bad thing.

   Storing Building Block Entries with a Document
Building Blocks can provide quite a bit of flexibility and power in a document. If you want to share Building Blocks with others, you need to remember that the entries are stored in templates, not in documents. This tip explains how to go about sharing the desired entries with others.

   Synchronizing Building Blocks for a Network
Building blocks can be a great asset when putting together documents, as they make inserting standardized information quick and easy. If you have multiple computers on a network, you may want a way to share the building blocks between each of those computers. Here are some ideas.

   Understanding Building Blocks
Ever wonder what the Building Blocks feature does in Word? Here's an explanation of the feature and what you can do with it.

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