Brush up on FrameMaker template components, including the Paragraph and Character Designer, and then dive into details on how to create your own custom template (from the book XML and FrameMaker by Kay Ethier, ISBN: 159059276X, Apress).
Understanding and Creating FrameMaker Templates - Designing Character Formats with the Character Designer (Page 5 of 14 )
Character formats, along with paragraph formats, are designed to adjust the look of your text. Character formats, however, are designed to affect small ranges of text instead of entire paragraphs. These formats can be layered on top of characters, words, or phrases within a paragraph.
Because character formats are designed for emphasizing small ranges of text, you can use them to do things like make a word bold, enlarge a character, or make a cross-reference link blue.
NOTE In a structured document, character formats can be associated with certain elements—such as a Term element—to automatically emphasize the content.
Character formats are created using the Character Designer. The Character Designer, which is used to create and modify character formats, is shown in Figure 3–9.
Figure 3–9. The Character Designer controls character formatting.
While the Paragraph Designer is complex, with six properties sheets that affect everything from indents to fonts to table cell settings, the Character Designer is relatively simple. It has only one properties sheet. The single sheet of the Character Designer is an exact match to the Paragraph Designer’s Default Font properties sheet.
NOTE In working with the Character Designer, it is important to understand that it has a second use. The Character Designer can also be used to verify text properties. Any time that you select text and have the Character Designer window open, it will display the settings of the selected text.
To create character formats, you can select text that you wish to tag, but this is not necessary. The following steps may be used to create a character format. To control what is adjusted, and avoid changing too much, these steps include the use of the As Is setting.
Open the Character Designer ( Format>Characters>Designer)
From the Commands menu, select Set Window to As Is.
This ensures that no text properties are set in the Designer.
Adjust the settings as needed to create the character format, only changing what is neccessary and leaving everything else as is to avoid changing too much.
From the Commands menu, select New Format.
Name your format in the Tag text box, and checkmark the appropriate boxes.
Store in Catalog means that the paragraph format will be added to the list of available formats (Paragraph Catalog) and will be available to tag onto other paragraphs. Apply to Selection means that the paragraph format will be applied (tagged) to the paragraph your insertion point is in.
Click the Create button.
The character format is now ready to use. You can apply it to text (using the Apply button or the Character Catalog). You can also access it anywhere that character formats are available through a dialog box. Character formats appear in the Paragraph Designer Numbering properties sheet, for example, and can be selected to automatically apply to numbering displays. Character formats also appear when you are creating cross-reference formats, variables, and many other parts of a template.
This chapter is fromXML and FrameMaker, by Kay Ethier (Apress, 2004, ISBN: 159059276X). Check it out at your favorite bookstore today. Buy this book now.