Creating table styles in PM?

Subject: Creating table styles in PM?
From: "Geoff Hart (by way of \"Eric J. Ray\" <ejray -at- raycomm -dot- com>)" <ght -at- MTL -dot- FERIC -dot- CA>
Date: Mon, 8 Feb 1999 11:24:00 -0700

Jennifer Wrightsell asked for advice on developing a simple style for
tables within PageMaker templates.

That's not really a trivial issue, since Pagemaker (PM) really sucks
at creating tables, and has sucked for the past 15 years or so
(amazing that it's been that long). The simplest way to create tables
in PM is to create a style named "table header" for the headers and a
second style entitled "table data" for the material that goes below
the headers. Note: Pick names that work for you. For example, if
you've got standard 4-column and 5-column tables, choose something
like 4colhead and 5colhead vs. 4coldata and 5coldata, and so on.
Then all you need to do is apply the relevant styles to each type of

You can make this a fairly productive tool for working with tables,
since things never seem to line up perfectly with standard styles.
Here's a tip that works in all versions of PM:

Optional step: Create new styles called "Table1head" and
"Table1data" (for example) based on the standard "5col..." styles.
1. At the end of the first line of the headers, delete the carriage
return and replace it with a shift-return; repeat for each line in
the header until all the lines in the header behave as a single
paragraph. (This is particularly useful if you want to use a single
rule above and below the headers.)
2. Pop up the "tabs and indents" controls for that style and drag the
tabs ruler until it's sitting right over the top of the table
3. Adjust the tabs and click Apply, repeating as necessary until the
headers line up just where you want them.
4. Repeat steps 1-3 for the data lines beneath the headers.

Awkward, but it does work well enough to be productive once you get
the hang of it. Now if only I could figure out how to
automate footnotes...

--Geoff Hart @8^{)} Pointe-Claire, Quebec
geoff-h -at- mtl -dot- feric -dot- ca

"Patience comes to those who wait."--Anon.

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