Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Using Manual Line Breaks with Justified Paragraphs.
by Allen Wyatt
(last updated November 21, 2015)
Many people use justified paragraphs in their documents. These types of paragraphs align both the left and right edges of the text in the paragraph, much like what is done in many books and magazine articles. If you are one of these people, you may have noticed that when you add a manual line break (Shift+Enter) in a justified paragraph, Word forces the line to the full width of the paragraph. This can look very strange and ruin the appearance of your text.You can avoid this problem by default, however, by following these instructions:
Figure 1. The Layout Options area of the Word Options dialog box.
Again, that will make this the default for manual line breaks.If you don't want the default option, there is another way to work around it. Enter a tab character just before the manual line break. When you do, Word makes the line with the tab left aligned, ignoring the justification alignment you applied to the whole paragraph.
WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (10912) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Using Manual Line Breaks with Justified Paragraphs.
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