Thursday, October 10, 2013

Got a Blank Line in your Electronic TOC?

I recently had someone contact me because she had a blank line in an electronic table of contents (TOC). She was deleting the line from the TOC but couldn't understand what was causing it.

This problem is exactly the same type of problem as described for a graphic turning up in a TOC. That is, the user accidentally applied a Heading 1, 2, or 3 style to a blank line. This event can happen frequently when you are trying to add a page break for a new section.

Fixing the Problem
  1. Click the blank line in the TOC. Your cursor will move to the location of the blank line because each entry in an electronic TOC is an internal link for the document. 
  2. Look to see what style was applied to the empty line. If it was a Heading 1, 2, or 3, this line is the source of your problem. 
  3. Apply another style to the empty line...anything other than a Heading 1, 2, or 3 style. 
  4. Check the next line, which is most likely a title line you need to be a Heading 1, 2, or 3 style and might not still be a Heading 1, 2, or 3 style anymore. If the style shifted, you'll need to reapply the heading style. You might need fuss with the paragraph returns to get the styles properly applied. You are again looking at the super secret hidden codes.