org Writer Tutorials in English

Edmund Laugasson, Rapla Lily Gymnasium Writer Tutorials in English
Here we are working with program Writer, which is word processor with similar  look  and feel to Microsoft Word and offering a comparable range of functions and tools.  can be always freely download (and further share to everyone) and also at Estonian translation team  download page, where also several language packs are available (link to Czech Republic's server).  Several tutorials can be found at here and specially for 2.x here. Also, please look  here.

Text into two or more columns
When designing newspaper style text, there would be necessary to have text deployed into two or  more columns, e.g. for better reading. This can be done in several ways. Also see the working with text  guide (910kB PDF­file).

Option 1
At first type text and then create columns with  selected text. Select previously typed text you wish to see in  two or more columns – drag diagonally over  text by holding down mouse left button. You may also select text by using keyboard –  hold down SHIFT key and move text cursor  using arrow keys and other text cursor moving  keys (PageUp/PageDown, CTRL+Home,  CTRL+End, Home, End, CTRL+arrow keys). This latin text is automatically generated by  using  lorem ipsum generator at online and  then just copy­pasted here. There's also similar  Firefox plugin available. a

...then choose Format ­> Columns...

1 / 14 Writer Tutorials in English Choose appropriate quantity of columns and other values and parameters Here you can choose graphically the quantity of columns by clicking with mouse left button into appropriate square.

Edmund Laugasson, Rapla Lily Gymnasium „Cancel“ button gives you possibility to cancel creating columns at any time. Preview area shows immediately result according to changes.
If all choices and values are changed, you may click „OK“ button to confirm changes.

Here you can type plain number of columns.

If you choose two or more columns, these choices will be accessible.

Here you can change column width if „AutoWidth“ is unmarked.

By pressing „Help“ button you will see additional help about managing columns.
Here you can choose predefined page styles to which you want to apply changes.

Unmark this if you want to change columns width manually. AutoWidth creates columns of equal width.

This button will be accessible if you choose four or more columns. Then you can scroll left to right to change each column width manually.

Separator line is visible line between columns. Here you can choose line width, height and position. Position option is only available if height value of the line is less than 100%.

Spacing is free space between columns. If you have two columns, only one space value is available. By three columns two values are available and if more columns will be created, then also spacing values will be more appear. 2 / 14 Writer Tutorials in English

Edmund Laugasson, Rapla Lily Gymnasium

Option 2
Here you can create graphical object called section. This is most used in newspapers. At first put your  text cursor to place, where the section should be appear. I suggest to enter one empty row by pressing  Enter once and then add section when text cursor is located at second row. This is necessary for the  title of text. Later adding would be uncomfortable. To insert section, choose Insert ­> Section...

In tab „Section“ (1) give the name of new section (2) and remove write protection (3) if present.

1 2


3 / 14 Writer Tutorials in English

Edmund Laugasson, Rapla Lily Gymnasium

In tab „Columns“ (1) you have to choose quantity of columns (2) and optional spacing between  columns (3). Hit on „Insert“ (4) to confirm your settings and insert that section into .

1 2


That's it! Actually there is also two other options to add columns: 1. Insert ­> Frame – this graphical object is not connected with page borders and therefore isn't  as accurate as section is. If you need custom craphical object, which can be moved around and  has two or more columns, this may be your choice. In newspapers the section is suggested. 2. Just create text boxes containing text. This is not comfortable due to fact, that text will be not  distributed equally between columns and you have to manually do that.

Option 2 (using section) is suggested to use two or more columns for text. For further reading about  formatting document using columns, sections, etc; please read this document (1,1MB PDF).

4 / 14 Writer Tutorials in English

Edmund Laugasson, Rapla Lily Gymnasium

Inserting picture
Put cursor to that page, where picture should be appear. Then choose Insert ­> Picture ­> From  File... No matter, where picture appears on the page – it can be later moved to the right place.

Find the place, where your pictures are and then insert it. Later you can change text wrapping around the picture, caption, arrangement, alignment, anchor, etc. NB! Remember! If you want to add something new, then at first put text cursor to that place, where it should be  appear. Then pull­down menu „Insert“ should be the place, where to look the solution. If you want just change already existing data – then activate or mark, what you would like to  change. Then pull­down menu „Format“ should be the place, where to look the solution. If you follow these two simple suggestions, you'll find most of functions available at  Especially at the beginning os usage is quite hard to remember all choices. 5 / 14 Writer Tutorials in English If image is active, you will also see that floating toolbar, which can me moved by dragging it with holding down mouse left button. Don't close it manually – it will disappear if picture is not active Sometimes this toolbar will not shown, then you may allow it from pull down menu View->Toolbars->Picture. If you hold (but not click) mouse cursor above some button, then you'll see explanation of that button in small yellow information bubble.

Edmund Laugasson, Rapla Lily Gymnasium

After inserting image, you may click on the image with right mouse button and see the following context menu. Image, frame, section, panel, table are graphical objects in Writer. It means, that in context menu you'll see the same named choice as the object name is.
If image is active, you will also see small anchor, which shows the place, where picture is anchored.

If image is active, you will see small green squares in the corner and in the middle of side of the picture. If image is active and you click on it by right mouse button, you'll see that context menu. Picture... gives all possible configurations. If there is graphical object, there in context menu is always choice named by object, which give access to all configuration options. Caption... is picture title, usually under the picture. If there is caption under the picture, there is also frame around the picture. Any further resize or movement should be made ONLY with that frame! Otherwise picture and frame relationship will be broken and cannot be restored.

Cut (CTRL+X), copy (CTRL+C), paste (CTRL+V) – these common functions probably don't need further explanations

ImageMap gives access very advanced picture editing features such as mouse on/over activities selected by whole or part of pictures, etc. These parts can be links to different pages in internet... 6 / 14 Writer Tutorials in English

Edmund Laugasson, Rapla Lily Gymnasium

Arrange gives you ability to order graphical objects as layers followed back-by-back.

Bring to Front – brings object to top of other objects Bring Forward - brings object forward of previous object Send Backward - sends object to backward of other objects Send to Back - sends object to back of previous object

Alignment gives you ability to align graphical objects regarding of anchored place.

Left – aligns graphical object horizontally left Centered - aligns graphical object horizontally centered Right - aligns graphical object horizontally right Base at Top - aligns graphical object vertically at top Base in Middle - aligns graphical object vertically in middle Base at Bottom - aligns graphical object vertically at bottom

Anchor gives you ability to bind graphical objects to related places.

To Page – binds graphical object to page (suggested) To Paragraph - binds graphical object to paragraph To Character - binds graphical object to character As Character - binds graphical object as character

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Edmund Laugasson, Rapla Lily Gymnasium No Wrap – places the object on a separate line in the document. The Text in the document appears above and below the object, but not on the sides of the object. Page Wrap - wraps text on all four sides of the border frame of the object. Optimal Page Wrap - automatically wraps text to the left, to the right, or on all four sides of the border frame of the object. If the distance between the object and the page margin is less than 2 cm, the text is not wrapped. Wrap Through - places the object in front of the text. In Background - moves the selected object to the background. This options is only available if you selected the Through wrap type. Edit Contour... - Wraps text around the shape of the object. This option is not available for the Through wrap type, or for frames. To change the contour of an object, select the object, and then choose Format - Wrap - Edit Contour. Then you can change the contour of the selected object. uses the contour when determining the text wrap options for the object. First Paragraph - starts a new paragraph below the object after you press Enter. The space between the paragraphs is determined by the size of the object.

Wrap gives you ability to wrap text around graphical objects.

Now you have to make desired choices with your picture settings. I suggest NOT to copy directly from web pages. Instead save the picture at first and  then insert it (Insert­>Picture­>From File...). If you just copy the picture from internet, then makes hyperlink to that picture. But if  internet connection is not present, also those copied pictures are not present. But if you want to permanent picture regardless of internet connection,  you should insert the picture as described above. Certainly. if you will make PDF, then there will be all the pictures but you cannot edit PDF­file as  much as original file (*.od*).

8 / 14 Writer Tutorials in English

Edmund Laugasson, Rapla Lily Gymnasium

Header and footer
To insert header or footer, choose: Insert ­> Header ­> Default or Insert ­> Footer ­> Default

Then you'll see special separated area, where you can add text, pictures, etc. and edit or configure  them as regular objects. To format header and footer, choose Format ­> Page and then appropriate tab. There you can  investigate further options. Also, please read that document (1,1MB PDF) pages 32­36.

Page numbering
At first you have to insert header or footer – depends, where you would like to see page numbers.  Page number goes NEVER to the first or last row of page! Let the text cursor be in the place, where  page number should be appear. No matter, on which page you are – if page numbers are inserted into  header or footer, they will be copied into all pages backwards and/or forwards. Then you can add it  using Insert­>Fields­>Page Number. Sometimes is useful to have also total number of pages. This  can be added using Insert­>Fields­>Page Count. Then you can align it e.g. to center like usual text.  Between page number and page count could be also „ / “ (space­slash­space) to separate them to get  them better readable. Result can be seen also at this document footer. For further reading about page  numbering, please see this document (1,1MB PDF) starting at page 36.

9 / 14 Writer Tutorials in English

Edmund Laugasson, Rapla Lily Gymnasium

Tables in Writer
At first you should create table and then add text to it. There is special pull­down menu for table and  that Table­>Convert­>Text to table would not always do the best work. So, there is always useful at  first create table and then insert text. To insert table, there are several ways:
● ● ●

Insert­>Table Table­>Insert­>Table



By hitting the button directly (1), it opens regular dialog for table creation but hitting the small black triangle right of table button (2), you can choose columns and rows by dragging mouse diagonally down and right.

Here are explanations of row and column meanings in table. These definitions are mandatory to  understand for understanding further table creation process.

this is row this is column

When text cursor is in the table, then floating toolbar is visible. This toolbar should not be closed  manually. It will disappear if text cursor is outside the table. If that table toolbar is accidentally closed,  it can be reopen by putting text cursor at first into table and then choosing View­>Toolbars­>Table.

10 / 14 Writer Tutorials in English Then you'll see table creation dialog.

Edmund Laugasson, Rapla Lily Gymnasium

if you are satisfied your table settings, click OK

giving name to table is optional choose appropriate quantity of columns choose appropriate quantity of rows by selecting Heading there can be selected quantity of first rows to be repeated each started page, where table continues (usually not necessary) uncheck this if you want to hide table borders here you can choose several previously created (colored) table designs (usually not necessary) Don't split table – if table is starting in the end of one page and continues on the next, then whole table will be start on next page if this box is checked you can cancel your actions at any time

for further assistance, please look help

11 / 14 Writer Tutorials in English

Edmund Laugasson, Rapla Lily Gymnasium

When table is created, put text cursor into table and choose pull­down menu Table­>Table  Properties... ­ there are all configuration options of table in Writer. Table properties is also accessible  via floating table toolbar – just hold mouse cursor on the button and you'll see small yellow  information bubble explaining button action.

Table Properties

12 / 14 Writer Tutorials in English Changing table borders at the tab „Borders“:

Edmund Laugasson, Rapla Lily Gymnasium

to remove all table borders, just hit here and then OK


then choose line style here


at first choose the border location here


optionally choose line color here

finally confirm your configuration by clicking OK

for further assistance click Help

13 / 14 Writer Tutorials in English Changing table background at the tab „Background“: choose fill style: Color – filled by color Graphic – filled by custom picture

Edmund Laugasson, Rapla Lily Gymnasium

For further possibilities about table, please see this  document (650kB PDF).


here you can decide the place, where this color will be applied


here you can choose the color this is preview area

to confirm your settings, click OK

for further assistance click Help 14 / 14

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