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Setting paragraph style within a text box 
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Joined: 2014-02-21 21:26:03
Posts: 13
I am having trouble editing text within a text box. I'd like to increase the paragraph spacing above the text from the lines of the box itself. Maybe add 6 to 12 pts above the text.

Ideally, it might be vertically centered in the box.

Any help?


2016-06-15 10:04:20

Joined: 2005-03-09 06:53:40
Posts: 78
Location: Louisville KY
I believe if you increase the vertical padding on the text box itself, that will give you the spacing you're looking for.


Vertical Padding.png
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2016-06-15 11:53:19

Joined: 2014-02-21 21:26:03
Posts: 13
Thanks for your reply, Mike. I thought that might work, too. However, the only thing that happens is that space after the text box increases. So, the paragraph following the box is affected, but the text within the box is not. It's been a curious thing to deal with.

2016-06-15 12:23:33

Joined: 2005-03-09 06:53:40
Posts: 78
Location: Louisville KY
That's odd. When I increase the padding, it alters the distance between the space between the box line and the first line of text. I find these sorts of settings can be quite different from user to user, or probably more precisely document to document, though often I can't spot why.

Hopefully one of the other forum folks will have a better suggestion!

2016-06-15 13:49:32

Joined: 2014-02-08 12:57:03
Posts: 170
Location: Australia
Re: Setting paragraph style within a text box

G'day, Rjones, Mike et al

The Padding settings generally affect separation of a text box's borders from external text, not from text contained within the box. (So my experience is more akin to that of Rjones than to that in your last posting, Mike.) Rather than looking at settings for Shapes, we need to look at settings for Text.

If you have the text within a text box in an editable state (ie, you have clicked at least twice within the box), you will notice that your horizontal ruler now pertains to the text in the text box, rather than to the main document text. You can use the indent markers in the ruler to adjust the left and right margins of the text within the box. This allows you to adjust the horizontal separation of the enclosed text from the box borders.

As you have discovered, adjusting the vertical separation is not so easy.

Text boxes cannot contain headers, so we don't have the option of adjusting header height. Setting parameters in the Margins Palette affects the main document, not the text box. Adjusting the spacing before a paragraph does not alter the position of the first paragraph: this is the case both within and without a text box.

The only solution I could think of is to place a dummy paragraph at the beginning of the text inside the text box. This could either be a paragraph return or dummy text that you make the same color as the background so that it is invisible. You then make the font size of this paragraph really tiny (eg, 1.0 pt). Now, with the cursor positioned within the first paragraph of "proper" text, you can adjust Paragraph Spacing Before to control the separation of your visible text from the top border of the enclosing box.

To adjust the separation from the bottom border of the box, drag one of the text box Shape’s lower selection handles as desired.

If you require another text box configured likewise, you can Copy and Paste text (which should include the initial dummy paragraph and at least the first character of the following paragraph) from the first box to a new one, then edit it as desired. But you need to ensure both boxes are the same width, adjustable in the Shape Metrics Palette. All you do then is move the bottom border of the second box up or down to suit the amount of text it contains.

I hope this is of some help.


MacBook Pro (mid-2014)
macOS Sierra 10.12.6
Nisus Writer user since 1996

2016-06-15 16:02:39

Joined: 2014-02-21 21:26:03
Posts: 13
Thank you for your thoughts, Adrian. Very helpful.

2016-06-24 11:14:30
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