Avoid Using the Normal Style

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated April 9, 2015)

2

If you use styles extensively in your Word documents, you should consider not using the Normal style. This is a predefined Word style which is used as the default for paragraphs. If you use defined styles for all your paragraphs, you can then search for any paragraphs defined with Normal. These are ones that have not been formatted properly and which deserve your attention. When there are no more Normal paragraphs in your document, you know that your formatting job is complete.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (469) applies to Microsoft Word 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003.

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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What is two more than 9?

2016-12-30 11:46:56

Richard Parsons

I disagree with you tip on never using the Normal style.

The tip may be good for a user that minimal knowledge of Word. However, for those who do know a good bit about Style Sets and formatting it is not appropriate.

Word provides a number of Style Sets; previously called Style Sheets. People who know Style Sets and how to use them, create or use an existing Style Set and format the styles for use with a specific type of document.

Every Style Set contains the Normal style for as you said it is the base used to create the other styles. Normal can be defined differently in every Style Set. For a specific Style Set, I use Normal as my basic style for paragraph text. I then tailor the other styles for what I want.

This is no different than not touching Normal and creating a another style and using it as my basic style.

By using Normal, I know that every paragraph in my document has been formatted according to my definition of Normal with the exception of those where I applied a different style. That means I don't have to go through a document looking for "unformatted" paragraphs.


2012-10-09 15:41:38

Lori

when would I ever use normal style in a document


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