The question of adding shading to paragraph text comes up in my online FrameMaker class every now and then. In the past (meaning FrameMaker 9 and earlier), the solution was always a single-cell table. In FrameMaker 10, you have a choice: you can simply add a background color behind the paragraph text, or use a single-cell table. Which one is right for you?
FrameMaker 10: Adding a Background Color
- Create a new paragraph format. I called mine Note.
- Enable the Background Color checkbox in the Default Font properties sheet in Paragraph Designer and click Update All.
Note: You may have to reduce the line spacing to remove white space between the lines of text within the paragraph.
The resulting paragraph using Background Color:
FrameMaker 10 & Earlier: Creating a Single-Cell Table
- Create a new paragraph format. I called mine Note2.
- Select the paragraph and choose Table > Convert to Table.
- Select Treat Each Paragraph As: A Cell with the Number of Columns set to 1. Heading Rows should be set to 0.
- Click the Convert button.
- Resize the table to fit the column width.
- With your cursor still in the table, create a new Table format. I called mine ShadingTable.
- Turn off the Table Title, set your Left & Right margins, set all of the rules to None and set the First 1 Row Shading to the color of your choice.
- Click the Update All button.
- The result using a single-cell table:
Comparing the results of both techniques, I think the single cell table looks better. Using a table format, we have control over the cell margins and I think that's going to provide the better solution.
In either case: don't forget to add the lead-in text to your paragraph tag so that it will appear automatically whenever you use that paragraph format.