Archive for September 28th, 2008

Sep 28 2008

Make Your Life Easier with Microsoft Word’s Autocorrect

I provide advice about how to write novels, comic books and graphic novels. Most of my content applies to fiction-writing in general, but I also provide articles specifically about superhero stories.

Microsoft Word automatically corrects common spelling mistakes. It also allows users to tell it which words should be autocorrected. Here are a few ways you can use autocorrect to make your life easier.

  1. If you use the same long phrases repeatedly, you can use autocorrect to create a macro. For example, our book repeats phrases like Agent Orange and the Office of Special Investigations, so we told autocorrect to turn the “word” [OJ] into Agent Orange and the “word” [OSI] into Office of Special investigations. When you set up macros, I recommend either using a combination of letters that will never come up naturally (like OJ) or a bracketed phrase. That way, you will reduce the odds of accidentally setting off your macro.
  2. If you change a character’s or location’s name, you can use autocorrect to help remind you not to use the original. If you change your hero’s name from Hiro to John, suddenly referring to him as Hiro will confuse readers. Autocorrect will help you from adding more mistaken references to Hiro. (However, it won’t fix instances of “Hiro” that are already in the work– use “Find and Replace” to hunt those down).
  3. This can help you maintain stylistic consistency. For example, sometimes authors forget how they spelled the names of minor characters. Mr. Merriman might become Mr. Merryman. Mrs. Busch might be married to Mr. Bush. If you notice that this is a problem, you can use autocorrect to prevent future occurrences by telling it to turn Merryman into Merriman.

No responses yet