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The Incredible Non-Breaking Hyphen

Thursday, December 18th, 2008 by | Filed Under: MS Office Help, MS Word

The Incredible Non-Breaking Hyphen

Okay, so I’m sure many of you know how to insert a non-breaking space between two words, right? That is, a space that will not allow the word to the left to be separated from the word to the right.

Well, if not, here it is: Ctrl + Shift + Spacebar

Instead of inserting the usual space between two things, use Ctrl + Shift + Spacebar and the items won’t be split on two lines.

It’s a very handy trick for dates in your documents! I hate it when I get the month at the end of one line and then the date at the beginning of the next. Using this one in a date wherever a space goes will force the program to keep the date on a single line, even through later editing when you might unknowingly split them.

Now, back to today’s topic of the non-breaking hyphen!

It’s the same scenario as with the spaces. You’ve got a hyphenated word, such as “e-mail,” but MS Word is putting the “e-” on one line and “mail” on the next. Not quite what you were hoping for, so what can you do?

I suppose you could go in and use the Enter key to force Word to put everything together, but that’s a nightmare for later editing.

So, instead of the usual hyphen, try Ctrl + Shift + Hyphen. With that, you’ll find that the hyphenated word is treated as a single word and not split onto two different lines.

Voila. An easy way to control exactly what’s going where in your documents!

~ April

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