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The Complete Idiot's Guide to Microsoft Office 97

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Microsoft Office 97

by Joe Kraynak, Sherry Kinkoph, Sherry Willard Kinkoph (Other)

You're a smart person who wants to stay ahead in the corporate world. You know that using Office 97 is what you need to do-but that could mean struggling through piles of technical manuals! Push aside those overweight books! The Complete Idiot's Guide to Microsoft(R) Office 97, Second Edition feeds you a low-fat diet of Office 97 that's easy to swallow and easy to


You're a smart person who wants to stay ahead in the corporate world. You know that using Office 97 is what you need to do-but that could mean struggling through piles of technical manuals! Push aside those overweight books! The Complete Idiot's Guide to Microsoft(R) Office 97, Second Edition feeds you a low-fat diet of Office 97 that's easy to swallow and easy to digest. Its lighthearted approach is perfect for new and experienced users who need to quickly take advantage of the best that Office 97 has to offer. So bypass fat, heavy books! Learning to be productive and efficient in Office will be a breeze.

Editorial Reviews

This painless guide shows the savvy businessperson (as well as the complete idiot) how to organize and dress up Word documents; create and manage spreadsheets; present a PowerPoint slideshow; set up a database with Access; keep track of appointments with Outlook; turn an existing Word document into a Web page; and cruise the Web with Internet Explorer 4. Also includes productivity tips, a guide to Microsoft's electronic library, and an archive of Office 97 buzzwords. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.

Product Details

Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
Complete Idiot's Guide Series
Edition description:
Product dimensions:
7.34(w) x 9.02(h) x 1.10(d)

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Read an Excerpt

The CIG to MS Office SBE - CH 20 - Do-It-Yourself Greeting Cards and Invitations

[Figures are not included in this sample chapter]

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Microsoft Office 97 Small Business Edition

- 20 -

Do-It-Yourself Greeting Cards and Invitations

In This Chapter

  • Creating a custom greeting card or invitation from scratch
  • Snazzy front page design
  • Making the inside greeting sing!
  • Adding a little flare to the back page
  • More than 10 exciting card tricks

When you're in a pinch, you can have a PageWizard whip out some prefab card. But
for some occasions, the standard fare isn't very appealing. You want a custom card,
one that shows off your flair for design and your ability to craft clever sayings.
And you don't want to have to work around a bunch of existing material that might
curb your creativity.

When the greeting card muse fills you with inspiration, create your own card from
scratch. In this chapter, you learn how to choose a type of fold for your card, add
graphics and text, embellish your card with graphic borders, and even print something
on the back. As an added bonus, this chapter contains a slew of tips for printing
and copying your card.

Side Fold or Top Fold? You Decide

The most difficult part of creating a card is figuring out how to set up the pages
so that when you fold the card the pages appear in the proper order with everything
rightside-up on each page. Fortunately, Publisher can manage the card folds for you.
You just have to tell Publisher how you want the card to fold. Take the following

1. Open the File menu and choose Create New Publication.

2. Click the Blank Page tab.

3. Click the desired card fold option: Tent Card, Side Fold Card,
or Top Fold Card.

4. Click OK.

Three ways to fold a card.

When Is a Page not a Page?  When you're creating your card, keep in mind
that a page is not a sheet of paper. Think of a page as a square tile and the sheet
of paper as your floor. On a side or top fold card, you have four tiles on the floor.

Each card fold option provides you with four pages. If you chose the top fold
or side fold option, you have a document consisting of four pages that print on a
single sheet of paper. When folded, the card has a front, a back, and two inside
pages. A tent fold prints two pages on each of two sheets of paper (or on the front
and back side of a single sheet of paper, assuming you want to feed the sheet through
your printer twice). Tent folds are great for showing people where to sit at a dinner

Take That, Hallmark: Designing the Front Page

Without an eye-catching front page, a greeting card is nothing more than pulp
for the recycle bin. You want a page that inspires awe in the recipient and compels
the person to open the card to see what other treasures are hidden inside. In the
following sections, you learn how to add a picture and WordArt object to the front
page. You also learn a little about cropping pictures.

Dazzling the Recipient with the Opening Picture

The first item you should add to the front page is a picture. By adding the picture
first, you won't have to deal with any weird wrapping when you add your text. To
insert a picture, draw a picture frame, as explained in "Frame Construction
101," in Chapter 18. Double-click the frame and then choose a clip art image
and click OK.

When you insert a picture, the Import Picture dialog box appears, asking if you
want the picture to resize the frame to fit the picture or resize the picture to
fit the frame. Choose Change the Frame to Fit the Picture to prevent the picture
from being distorted. You can always resize it later by dragging the frame's handles.
See Chapter 18, "It's All in How You Frame It," for details on how to resize
and move pictures.

Web Work!

Publisher supports GIF and JPG graphic file formats (along with a bushel of other
formats), which are commonly used for graphics on Web pages. To save an image from
a Web page to your hard drive, right-click the image in Internet Explorer, choose
Save Picture As, choose the folder in which you want the image saved, and
click Save. You can then insert the picture in a picture frame by choosing
Insert, Picture File.

To have the image wrap around onto the back page, drag the left center handle
of the image to the left to extend the image onto the scratch area (the gray area
outside the page).

The opening picture is the linchpin of a successful greeting card.

Time Out for a Brief Lesson in Cropping

Sometimes you'll get a picture that includes a bunch of extra stuff you don't
really have room for. You can crop out what you don't need. Click the picture to
select it and then click the Crop Picture button. Move the mouse pointer over
one of the handles until it appears as a crop pointer and drag the handle toward
the center of the picture to crop out what you don't want. If you snip off too much
or change your mind later, follow the same steps, but drag away from the center to

Chop off what you don't need.

Now for a Little WordArt

Sure, you can stick a plain text frame on the front page, but if you want a little
more pizzazz on the front, WordArt's the tool of choice. Click the WordArt
button and drag a frame where you want the object placed. Type your text in the Enter
Your Text Here box (press Enter at the end of a line to start a new line).
Use the controls in the following table to change the shape and formatting of your
WordArt object. (You can edit a WordArt object later by double-clicking it.)

WordArt Toolbar Buttons

Click To
Reshape bar Reshape the WordArt object.
Typestyle bar Choose a typestyle.
Font Size bar Choose a font size. (Best Fit is not always the best fit.)
Bold button Make the text bold.
Italic button Make the text italic.
Same Height button Make every character the same height, so a small "e" is as tall as a capital
"I." This looks weird.
Vertically Stack button Stack the letters vertically. (This looks pretty bad for any shape except Top to
Stretch Text to Fill the Frame button Stretch the text to fill the frame. This usually makes the text taller so that it
reaches up to the top and bottom of the frame.
Align within Frame button Align the text between the left and right edges of the frame: left, right, center,
or justified (stretched out to reach across the frame).
Shove or Spread Letters button Shove the letters together or spread them apart.
Rotate button Rotate the text inside the frame or change the shape of the text.
Change Text Color button Change the text color. (You'd think this would change the frame's background color,
but it actually changes the text color.)
Drop Shadow button Add a drop shadow to the text. This is cool.
Add Border button Add a border to the text. This is sort of like making it bold.

Whenever you choose a formatting option for the WordArt object, Publisher automatically
updates it, so you can see the change in action. If you click a button that displays
a dialog box, drag the dialog box's title bar to move the box out of the way so that
you can see the effects of your changes. (If you edit the text itself, you must click
the Update Display button to see how your new text will look.)

When you're done playing around with the object, click anywhere outside it. Click
the object again to select it. You can now change formatting for the frame itself.
For example, you can add a border, background shading, or drop shadow. (By default,
a WordArt frame is transparent, so if you lay it on top of your picture, you'll still
be able to see the picture behind the WordArt frame.)

Spin It In the previous table, you learned how to rotate the WordArt
text inside the frame. To rotate the frame and its contents, hold down the
Alt key while dragging one of the WordArt frame's handles.

Taking It Inside with the Greeting or Invitation

That was fun, but now it's time to go inside and take care of business. Click
the Next Page button. If you're in Two-Page Spread view, you can see your
card as the recipient will see it when he or she opens it. However, in this view,
the pages are too dinky to work on, so choose View, Single Page, and
flip to page 3. (You can change views at any time by choosing the desired view from
the View menu.) You'll probably want to zoom in a little, too.

Insert a picture frame, as explained in "Dazzling the Recipient with the
Opening Picture," earlier in this chapter. In Two-Page Spread view, you can
size the graphic to make it straddle the fold so that it prints on pages 2 and 3.

Excel? Tables look sort of like Excel worksheets without the math. You
can select a column by clicking the gray bar at the top, or select a row by clicking
a bar at the left. Click the square in the upper-left corner to select the whole

As for the inside greeting, you have a few options: WordArt, text frame, or table.
For the basics of inserting these objects, see "Frame Construction 101,"
in Chapter 18. I don't want to stifle your creativity by telling you which one to
use, so I'll just give you a few pointers to help you decide and get you started:

  • Avoid WordArt for any lengthy text. It's great for three or four words, but it's
    tough to control for any long text entries.

  • If you insert a text frame, choose Format, Fancy First Letter,
    and choose a style you like. This makes the first letter big and colorful as in those
    professional cards. You can even design your own fancy first letter!

  • For an additional graphic touch, use BorderArt for your text frame. Choose Format,
    Border, and click the BorderArt tab.

  • For an invitation, consider creating a two-column table, as shown in the following
    figure. In the left column, insert headings, such as "Date," "Time,"
    "Place," and so on. In the right column, type specific information (the
    actual date, time, and place).

  • To include directions on your invitation, run Automap Streets Plus, as explained

  • Chapter 30, "Cruising the U.S. with Automap Streets Plus." Display
    a map of the area, drag over the section you want to include, and press Ctrl+C.
    Change back to Publisher, right-click where you want the map inserted (page 2 is
    usually a good place), and choose Paste Picture. Cool, huh? Use the Custom
    Shapes button in the left toolbar to insert arrows, if desired.

Tables are great for laying out invitations.

Adding a Personal Touch to the Back

Although you can leave the back of the card blank, the Hallmark commercials show
that every prima donna turns to the back first to check if the card is from Hallmark.
You really should stick some subtle design on the back to give your card a professional
look and feel.

Add a personal touch to the bottom of page 4.

The best tool to use for adding something to the back is the Design Gallery. Flip
to page 4 and click the Design Gallery button. Under Choose a Category, click
Attention Getters, Headlines, or Ornaments, and double-click
the desired design. Resize the object, edit any text it contains, and center it at
the bottom of the page. The most common text to place here is "Designed by"
followed by your name, but I'm sure you can come up with something more original.

Savvy Design and Printing Tips

After you've spent all that time designing and creating a custom card, you don't
want to cheapen it by printing it on some lightweight paper. Check your printer manual
to determine the types of paper you can use, and then go to your local office supply
store and get some high-quality card stock. While you're there, pick up some fancy
envelopes. Here are a few more tips that'll help you jazz up your card:

  • You can give any page a fancy border. Create an empty text or picture frame that
    follows the outline of the page margins. Choose Format, Border, and
    enter your border preferences. Click the Send to Back button so that the frame
    won't cover anything on the page.

  • If you have a black-and-white printer, add some color using markers, colored
    pencils, or watercolors. If you need more than one copy of the card take it to the
    copy shop and copy it on a color copier.

  • Another way to add color is to print or copy the card onto colored paper.

  • If you don't have a scanner and you want to include a photo, create a blank frame
    (with a border) that's big enough for the photo. Paste or tape the photo inside the
    border, and then run the card off on a copier.

  • For a cool effect, leave a blank frame on the front of the card, print a picture
    the size of the frame on a transparency sheet, cut out the graphic and paste it to
    the front page, inside the frame. For a 3D effect, take an exacto-knife, cut out
    the inside part of the frame, and paste the graphic on the back of the sheet.

  • Trim the card with pinking shears (those scissors with the jagged edges) or simply
    snip off the corners to give your card a unique shape.

  • Get crafty. Glue some glitter, beads, or colored string on your card. Of course,
    you don't want to run it through the copy machine afterward.

Tech Check

At this point, you should have a pretty cool card to send off. When you're ready
to make your next card, you should be able to do the following:

  • Control the card folds. See "Side Fold or Top Fold? You Decide."

  • Jazz up the front of the card with a cool graphic. See "Dazzling the Recipient
    with the Opening Picture."

  • Add some splash to the card front with a WordArt object. See "Now for a
    Little WordArt."

  • Give your inside greeting a fancy first letter. See "Taking it Inside with
    the Greeting or Invitation."

  • Use a table to lay out information for an invitation. See "Taking it Inside
    with the Greeting or Invitation."

  • Make your card unique. See "Savvy Design and Printing Tips."

Meet the Author

Joe Kraynak is the author of Easy Internet, Second Edition, as well as best-selling titles such as Windows® 95 Cheat Sheet, The Complete Idiot's Guide® to PCs, and The Big Basics Book of Microsoft Office.

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