I need help with Microsoft Word. Do you know where I can get telephone support? I have a book typed in Word and I need to put a ~ after every period. Is there any way to populate this without typing in everyone?
Help Using Microsoft Word
Microsoft Word is a complex word processor with tons of useful features - if you know how to use them. In this case, it's not necessary to try to call Microsoft for help as you have found Filetonic.com and we're always eager to do our best to lend a helping hand. I'm not sure why an editor would want a "~" mark after every period and I can see how tedious that would be to do manually, even in a relatively short document - let alone a book. However, we can accommodate this request fairly easily using Microsoft's Find and Replace feature.
Using Word's Find and Replace Feature
The Find and Replace feature is most often used to find certain words and replace them with new words. For example, let's say that you wrote a book and your main character was named "Ralph." Later, you decide that you'd rather Ralph have a different name, such as Benny. Rather than going through and replacing each instance of "Ralph" with "Benny" (and possibly missing a few), you can use the Find and Replace feature to find "Ralph" and replace it with "Benny."
Word can also search your document for every single period (.) and replace each one with a tilde (~) mark. To do this, hit the Control key plus the ‘F' key. I remember this by thinking ‘F' for "Find." A box appears. Enter a period mark in the box that says "Find what" and then click the "Replace" tab. Now, enter a tilde mark in the box that says "Replace with." When you're ready, click either the Replace button or the Replace All button. You can do it one period at a time by clicking the Replace button followed by Find Next, but that's going to be quite tedious.
Problems with Find and Replace
Before you click on Replace All, keep in mind that this will replace all periods, not just the ones that end a sentence. For example, if your text contains a Web site address such as Filetonic.com, the period will be replaced and you'll end up with "Filetonic~com." You can avoid problems like this by including a space after the both punctuation marks when you enter them in the Find and Replace dialog boxes. That way, when Word finds a period followed by a blank space, it will replace the period and the blank space with a tilde and a blank space. When Word finds a period followed by a letter, it will ignore it.
I hope this little trick helps make your job easier. Word is a powerful tool with tons of timesavers. Explore Word's built-in Help files or check out Microsoft Office Online for tutorials and tips. Microsoft even offers a free self-paced training course covering Word 2007.