Word 2004 Tip: Paste and go back to beginning of pasted text

Posted by Pierre Igot in: Macintosh
August 31st, 2004 • 1:11 am

A while ago, I wrote about the need to invent a “paste and select” command in Word, which would automatically select the range of text that has just been inserted in a Word document through a “Paste” command. (In Word, when you paste a range of text, Word inserts the text and then places the insertion point at the end of the inserted text.)

Well, I still haven’t come up with the Word macro that would do such a thing. (I am sure it’s not that difficult, but I just haven’t had the chance to explore VisualBasic.) But I have just found a way to achieve something similar without any programming.

For a long time, Word has had a command called “GoBack” that lets you cycle through the last few locations in a document where your insertion point has been. These locations are a bit of information that is actually stored with the document when you save it, so that, even after you’ve closed and reopened a document, you can “jump back” to the last location where you were when you last closed the document. (Unfortunately, as usual, this command is marred by poor implementation and doesn’t work as expected when you have more than one Word document open at the same time. But that’s another story.)

The default keyboard shortcut for the “GoBack” command is shift-F5.

Well, if you place your insertion point somewhere in a Word document and paste a range of text, if you use the “GoBack” command immediately after pasting the text, Word will place the insertion point back where it was before you pasted the text.

This does not actually constitute a “paste and select” command, but, if you paste the range of text at the end of the document, you can easily use shift-F5 to jump back to the beginning of the inserted range and then extend the selection to the end of the document.

It’s better than nothing. Now, I need to start working on my Word macros again…

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