Importing text with File>Import Text

I’ve noticed a lot of designers putting text into Quark via the clipboard (copy and paste), but you really want to be using the File>Import Text command, as it allows you to import MS Word styles into Quark.

If you regularly use the same QuarkXPress templates, you can import MS Word files into Quark without too much fuss, as long as your styles have the same names in both programs.

When the Import Text dialog box appears, be sure to select ‘Include Style Sheets’. If you have set up corresponding styles, you’ll get a conflict box in Quark informing you the names are in use. Simply tick the ‘Repeat For All Conflicts’ box and select ‘Use Existing’.

If you’ve only set up styles in Word, you can still import them and edit them in Quark.

Which Word features import into QuarkXPress?

Actually, not a great deal, but you need to think of MS Word as essentially a text editor, not a page layout program.

Things that import well

  • Anything associated with the font menu, such as typeface, type size and formatting such as bold, italic, underline, superscript, subscript and so on
  • Paragraph breaks, line breaks, tabs, section breaks, page breaks
  • Word processor styles, assuming you enable this on the File>Import Text dialog box

Things that don’t import

  • Images
  • Fields
  • Headers
  • MS Word’s automatic bullets and numbers (although there is a workaround for this problem, which is discussed here)

Things that import imperfectly

  • Tables — the contents of tables do come through, but appear as characters separated by tabs. If the tables are fairly small, then you’re probably better off recreating them using Quark’s table function. If they’re big, it’s worth getting your authors to do them in Excel, as Quark can import Excel tables
  • Footnotes — the footnote text is imported, but all the footnotes appear at the end of the text string and not on the relevant pages. There are Quark XTensions that enable automatic footnotes (such as this one), but realistically you’re probably stuck with inserting them manually. This is quite a serious deficiency in QuarkXPress
  • Hyperlinks — MS Word’s automatic hyperlinks come through as blue, underlined text, which you’ll have to get rid of one way or another. It’s a good idea to get authors to turn this function off in Word.

Anything else?

  • Many authors collaborate using Word’s Track Changes function. Before you import text into Quark, ensure this is disabled by using the Accept All Changes in Document and Delete All Comments in Document functions.

4 Responses to “Importing text with File>Import Text”

  1. one more question about footnotes, i noticed that when i import word file, some numbers are not complete… numbers go like 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 1, 1, 1, 14, 1, 1, 1, 1, 1 etc… some are right some have just first digit. any idea how to solve this. thanks

  2. That’s not a particular problem I’ve had, but I have found that using Track Changes in MS Word can affect several numbering functions, including footnote numbering. Selecting ‘Accept all changes’ usually fixes this.

  3. when i used quark 6.x version i allways saved word file for word 6.0/95 version and everything was ok, but with 7.x and unicode support i must have xp or 2003 version of word file to asure that all characters stay the same in quark. so footnotes go mad, and i get all the right characters… i guess i will stay with manual replacing numbers…

  4. Client has a long document with many hyperlinks in Word. I need to keep those as functioning hyperlinks in Quark. When I import text from word, the text shows up as underlined and blue, but without the hyperlink. I can change the text to any other color and not underline, but I really need the hyperlinks.

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