Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Word 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Word, click here: Using the Spike to Edit.

Using the Spike to Edit

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated September 25, 2017)

Word has a feature that allows you to collect groups of text and paste them in another location. It is different than the Clipboard, which allows you to work with only one item at a time. The Spike is named after an old-fashioned paper holder onto which people poked papers as they were done with them.

To collect information in the Spike, simply select the text and press Ctrl+F3. This cuts (removes) the information from your document and places it in the Spike. You can continue this process, and Word will add all the selected text to what already exists in the Spike.

When you are ready to paste the information somewhere, simply press Ctrl+Shift+F3. All the information in the Spike (not just the last text you placed there) is deposited in your document at the insertion point. This action also erases everything in the Spike. If you want to paste the contents of the Spike without clearing it, you can follow these steps:

  1. Position the insertion point where you want the Spike contents pasted.
  2. Type spike.
  3. Press F3.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (24) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Word (Word 2007 and later) here: Using the Spike to Edit.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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