Do you use the game changer called Microsoft Word Macros?
Microsoft Word Macros, otherwise simply called Macros are coded instructions used to achieve previously specified aims. They can be defined as the automating of repetitive tasks. Macros can be created for any purpose but we want to focus on the utilisation of Macros in editorial functions using the ubiquitous Microsoft Word software.
Editing has lots of repetitive tasks that have to be done diligently, which makes the job suitable for only those with high verbal, error-testing and mechanical aptitudes. Rigorous editing can be tedious and can be unattractive for many as a job specialisation but it is important if we must continue to have books that are delightful to read. Fortunately, some brilliant people have been able to automate some of these tasks in order to perfect the editing process.
Macros are mostly used as a pre-editing tool. You can use them to sweep through the document, analysing the content to give you a clearer picture of the content, which, when you peruse the style sheet, will give you an almost perfect roadmap on how to handle the document. Macros will navigate through the document to gather requested information, highlight or change specified text, depending on the particular macro you use.
An example of the tasks that you will love to use macros for is the SpellingErrorLister, one of the very many created and shared by Paul Beverley. When you ‘run’ this macro, it automatically lists the misspellings in the document, no matter its size. They are listed at the end of the document and you can then use the list to edit the document, as specified on the style sheet. Just take a second or two and imagine how much time you save running a CitationListChecker for that academic job?
We think so too.
Macros can be used on documents of any lengths but the higher the number of pages, the greater time you save by using macros. Those who value efficiency and excellence will take time to learn and master these beautiful tools.
HOW TO USE MACROS
You can record macros yourself to automate tasks you run regularly or you can use macros that others have created and shared for free. I highly recommend the list of macros shared by Paul Beverley, especially if you are new to the concept of macros. The next post will discuss how beginners can get started using macros.