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HELP! Word won't save my formatted text--opens unformatted every time.


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MelyndianaJones

 
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I love Pages. However, I am writing my dissertation and my committee needs this monster document in Word, so here I am. I have Word 2010 for mac. And, I have spent hours and hours trying to figure out what to click, unclick, reset, or switch to make this program behave.

I'm a smart girl, but every single time I save my document and close it, all formatting is lost--all tabs, all italics, etc. Since this is a dissertation it has to be in a certain format and there are a lot of tabs and heading styles. I don't know whether to cry or scream. It doesn't matter whether I save it as a doc file or docx. Same thing. When I re-open the file it will show the tracked changes as the complete opposite of what I had. For instance--if the heading was centered it will show a tracked change that I made it left-justified at the time I closed the file. (So if I hit the "reject" X, it will go back to the center...most of the time.)

Oh! And the headers--I have to reset the headers every ten (five?) minutes. They will suddenly change from 1 inch margins on the top to 3 or 4 inches--just out of nowhere.

Does anyone know what on earth is going on? I am about to have to hang it up and type this on a PC. (I am desperate.) Thanks for any suggestions!
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chas_m

 
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Since you already know Pages, why not just use that? It saves in Word format just fine, and you can get on with the creation process and maybe use Word for a "final check."

It does sound to me like Word is either improperly installed or just screwy. I'd uninstall it completely (using the tool MS provides on the disk) and reinstall it.
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MelyndianaJones

 
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Thanks for the suggestion, but although Pages will save to Word format, the formatting is still often not correct. For typical docs, it's okay, but for docs like this or grants when the formatting really matters, it has to be typed with Word. (Maybe there is a way to "lock" the margins/tabs in Pages so they look the same in Word? I don't know, but for some reason they are always a little off.)

But, Thanks!
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MelyndianaJones

 
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I forgot to say that I will be taking your suggestion and trying a reinstall first thing this morning.
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chscag

 
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First, you're not using Office 2010 since that's a Windows version. You must be using Office 2011 Word.

Are you "Tracking Changes"? If you are, try turning them off and return to normal document processing. Also, do you have "Always Make a Backup" turned on? Going through all the preferences and options, I can't find anything that would cause the behavior you described to occur.

Your "normal template" could be corrupt but I've never seen a corrupted template do what you stated. You might want to try moving the normal template to your desktop and let Word create another the next time it opens.

The normal template can be found here:

/Users/your user name/Library/Application Support/Microsoft/Office/User Templates/normal.dotm

Close Word. Drag the file "normal.dotm" to your desktop and restart Word. Let's see what happens. If the same thing occurs, put the original normal.dotm back. (overlay the new one)

Let us know.
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MelyndianaJones

 
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Okay--after hours on a PC without any luck, by chance, I figured out what was really happening. I was actually not losing the changes when I saved them, I was actually losing them before--I would change a heading and it would undo the formatting for the last one I did. Unfortunately, it wasn't doing it for every single one, so I just never scrolled up far enough to see that this was what was happening (It's a 200 page document).

So, once I figured this out, I deduced that it was something having to do with the "automatically updating" of styles. Which was a bit frustrating--I think "styles" must have become more prominent when I made the PC to Mac jump, because I don't remember the styles ever having such influence over my docs. I know they were always there, but I wasn't as aware of them before. Anyway, I went in and checked the boxes that showed me what styles were in my doc (and where) and then turned off "automatically update" for all of them. This fixed it. (My description sounds very concise and easy--It actually took me a few hours to figure out how to do all of this.)

Thank you all for putting your heads together and trying to figure this out! I'm sorry that I initially had the wrong set of symptoms.

Thanks again!
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Not a problem, I'm glad you figured it out. And by the way, removing the normal template and creating a new one would have also solved it but with some side effects. I hope your dissertation goes well. Visit us again.
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