Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 365. 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 the Spike to Edit.
by Allen Wyatt
(last updated July 23, 2020)
Word has a feature that allows you to collect groups of text and paste them in another location. It is different than the Clipboard, which allows you to work with only one item at a time. The Spike is named after an old-fashioned paper holder onto which people poked papers as they were done with them. To collect information in the Spike, simply select the text and press Ctrl+F3. This cuts the information from your document and places it in the Spike. You can continue this process, and Word will add all the selected text to what already exists in the Spike.
When you are ready to paste the information somewhere, simply press Ctrl+Shift+F3. All the information in the Spike (not just the last text you placed there) is deposited in your document at the insertion point. This action also erases everything in the Spike. If you want to paste the contents of the Spike without clearing it, you can follow these steps:
WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (13355) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Office 365. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Using the Spike to Edit.
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