Friday, July 31, 2009

Tech Tip: Poets – make Word stop capitalizing!


Out of the box, Microsoft Word is good for a lot of writing assignments, but not if you’re a poet. Here’s a quick fix to reconfigure Word to make it more poet-friendly.


The Problem: Word automatically capitalizes the first word of every sentence and every new line. You do not write poetry in that format, and are tired of backspacing and changing all those words.

The Solution: A few simple checkboxes.

(The steps are for Word 2007; menu choices will be different for other versions)

  1. Click the Office icon at the top left of Word, then choose Word Options from the bottom of the menu.
  2. Click Proofing
  3. From the screen on the right, click the box “AutoCorrect Options” in the first section, called “AutoCorrect Options”
  4. Uncheck “Capitalize first letter of sentences”

Word will now no longer automatically replace what it considers “incorrect” lower case letters.

But it will still mark this error with a green squiggly “Grammar Error” line. To turn off that annoyance:

  1. In the section called “When Correcting Grammar and Spelling in Word” click the “Settings” button.
  2. Uncheck “Capitalization”
  3. Click OK

Now Word will stop reminding you that as a poet you don’t know what you’re doing.

If you’re likely to make other grammatical errors in your poems – unusual spelling, syntax, punctuation, click one more box in this screen, “Hide grammar errors in this document only”

Finally, you can set Word to ignore capitalization in all new documents or just the current one. The very bottom of the screen has a drop-down box called “Exceptions For.” Choose either the current document name, or All New Documents.

1 comment:

Charles Gramlich said...

Nice tip. That capitalization thing IS irritating.


The poet doesn't invent. He listens. ~Jean Cocteau