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This chapter is from the book

Working with Text

Text in Visio usually goes into text blocks. Text blocks are associated with shapes, and wherever the shape goes, the text block goes as well. Text blocks show frames in which you can insert text; the text is all that shows unless the text block is specifically selected.

Sometimes, you may want to add text to a drawing that's not connected to a shape, such as a title. For that, you use a text shape. Note that Visio usually provides alternatives for having to use freestanding text shapes—the Borders and Titles stencil, part of many templates, lets you enter titles for your drawing directly.

So how do you add text to a shape? Start by simply double-clicking the shape (or select the shape and press F2). That makes the text block for the shape appear, as shown in Figure 3.18.

Figure 3.18

Figure 3.18 A text block.

If your Visio zoom factor is set to anything under 100%, Visio zooms the shape to 100% to display the text block.

Enter your text, as shown in Figure 3.19. If your text is too long, Visio automatically wraps that text. You can press Enter to type multiple lines of text as well.

Figure 3.19

Figure 3.19 Entering text.

By default, Visio enters text in 8-point Arial font, which can be hard to see. To format the text, right-click the text block and select Format Text, opening the Text dialog shown in Figure 3.20. Adjust the font and font size there, then click OK.

Figure 3.20

Figure 3.20 Formatting text.

After you've entered and formatted your text, click outside the shape, which deselects the text block. The text in the block now appears inside the shape, as shown in Figure 3.21.

Figure 3.21

Figure 3.21 Text inside a shape.

Want to create text not associated with any shape? Just use the Text tool in the Standard toolbar (the Text tool shows a capital letter A).

Then just drag the mouse to create a freestanding text block, not associated with a shape, or click your drawing to have Visio display a text block.

You can see a new freestanding text block in Figure 3.22.

Figure 3.22

Figure 3.22 A freestanding text block.

Enter the text you want in the text block, and right-click the text block, selecting Format Text to format that text. After formatting, click outside the text block to remove the text block frame and make the text itself appear, as shown in Figure 3.23.

Figure 3.23

Figure 3.23 Freestanding text.

That creates freestanding text in a drawing. Not bad.

In fact, Visio created a text shape for you here—text is never actually truly freestanding in Visio. The text shape exists just to hold text—it has no lines to its geometry.

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