Link text boxes in Pages for iCloud
You can link two or more text boxes so that text can flow from one text box to the next. This is useful, for example, if you’re creating a newsletter and want to have multiple columns of text on a page, or you want to continue a sidebar onto another page.
Each series of linked text boxes is called a thread and is identified by the shared color of the circle at the top of each text box. Numbers in the circles indicate the order of the text boxes in the thread. You can add and remove text boxes from a thread, change their order in the thread, move them to a different thread, and more.
Note: If instead of linking multiple text boxes you want your entire document (or a section) to use columns, see Format columns of text.
Create a new thread
You can start a thread with an empty text box or one that already has content. For example, if you want to set the documentʼs layout before you add content, you can add several empty text boxes, place them where you want on the page, then link them. Or, you can start with a text box that already has content, then link more text boxes as needed to accommodate your text.
Select the text box that you want to be the start of the thread, then click the white circle at the top.
The circle fills with color and the number 1 to indicate it’s the start of a thread.
If you see a different number or if the color matches an existing thread, the text box was linked to an existing thread instead. To make it the start of a new thread, click its circle and choose Create New Thread.
For each additional text box you want to add to the thread, do one of the following:
If the next text box is empty: Select it, then click the white circle at the top.
If the next text box contains text: Select it, then click the white circle at the top—this starts a new thread. To join the existing thread instead, click the circle again, choose the thread you want to join, then click Merge. The content in the current text box is added to the end of the thread.
You only see the Merge dialog the first time you merge text boxes—after that, content is merged automatically.
The circle of each text box you add fills with the same color shown in the first box and a number that indicates its order in the thread (you can change the order at any time).
To add content to the thread, type in the first text box of an empty thread, or add to existing text in the thread.
If the last text box in the thread has a clipping indicator at the bottom, which indicates that there is more text than can fit in the text box, do one of the following:
Drag the clipping indicator or any resize handle until all the text is visible.
Drag the resize handles of other text boxes in the thread until your text fits into the existing text boxes.
Add another text box to the thread.
Reorder linked text boxes
If a thread has more than one linked text box on a page and you drag one of the text boxes to a new location on the same page, its content doesn’t automatically reflow to reflect the new location. If you assign a new order to the text box instead, its content reflows naturally.
Select the linked text box whose order you want to change, then click the circle at the top.
In the pop-up menu that appears, move the pointer to Layout Order, then choose a new order number from the second pop-up menu.
The text in the thread updates to reflect the new order.
Note: When a thread spans more than one page and you move a text box to a different page (instead of changing its location on the same page), the numbering of all of the text boxes in the thread automatically adjusts so the text flows naturally.
Assign a text box to a different thread
You might want to reassign a text box if its placement on the page makes it ideal for another thread and you donʼt want to rearrange the items on your page, or if you simply linked to the wrong thread.
When you reassign a text box that was the only text box in the thread, the text box and its content are added to the new thread. When you reassign a text box that was one of several text boxes in a thread, only its text box is reassigned to the new thread—its content is reflowed in the remaining text boxes of its original thread.
Select the text box that you want to reassign, click the circle at the top, then in the pop-up menu, choose the thread you want it to belong to.
If you see a dialog asking if you want to merge the content, click Merge. You only see the Merge dialog the first time you merge text boxes containing text—after that, content is automatically merged.
The text box is added to the thread based on its position on the page. You may need to move or reorder your text boxes so the text flows naturally.
Start a new thread from a linked text box
You can start a new thread with a text box that’s already linked to a thread. The text box is unlinked from its original thread and emptied; any text it contained is merged into the remaining text boxes in the original thread.
You might want to do this, for example, if the placement of a linked text box is where you want to start a new thread and you don’t want to change the page layout.
Select the linked text box you want to be the start of a new thread, click the circle at the top, then choose Create New Thread.
Change the style of all text or text boxes in a thread
You can change the style of all the text boxes in a thread at the same time. For example, you can add a border to the boxes or fill the boxes with color. You can also change the font, size, or style of all the text in a thread. When you’re editing a thread, all the text boxes in the thread are outlined to make it easier to see how your changes are applied.
Do any of the following:
Change the style of all text: Click anywhere in the text of the thread (to place the insertion point), press Command-A (on a Mac) or Control-A (on a Windows computer) to select all the text, then make your changes in the Style tab of the Format sidebar on the right.
Change the style of all text boxes: Control-click one of the text boxes, choose Select All Text Boxes in Thread from the shortcut menu, then make your changes in the Style tab of the Format sidebar on the right.
Unlink a text box
When you unlink a text box, if there are other text boxes in the thread, its text is merged into them. If it’s the only text box in the thread, it becomes a standard text box with its content.
Select the text box, click the circle at the top, then choose Remove from Thread from the pop-up menu.
Delete a linked text box
When you delete a linked text box, its text is merged into any remaining text boxes in the thread. If it’s the only text box in the thread, the text box and its content are deleted.
Select the text box, then press the Delete key.
Linked text boxes are always set to “Stay on Page” to help you control where your threads are positioned. For information about how objects can be anchored, see Place objects with text in Pages for iCloud.