Need an em dash in your document? If you’re a fan of keyboard shortcuts, you could probably tap out Shift + Option + Hyphen in your sleep.
A registered trademark symbol? Option + R, of course. Or maybe you prefer the Type > Insert Special Character flyout menu, which displays a handful of such commonly used marks.
But what if you need an accent, a fraction or an umlaut (as in Mötley Crüe)?
These special characters — or glyphs, as they are technically known — are needed for everything from financial documents to cookbooks. And there’s an easy way to access them in InDesign: the Glyphs panel.
Just choose Type > Glyphs to open the panel. Click in your document where you want to insert a special character, or highlight the character you want to replace. Find that character in the palette and double-click to insert it.
A few tips for navigating the Glyphs panel:
• If you use a character often, it’s shown in the Recently Used boxes across the top for easy access.
• To filter the options (for example, Currency or Punctuation), go to the Show menu.
• To change the font, go to the menu at the bottom of the panel.
• To change the size of the characters, use the mountain icons in the lower-right corner.
• Create a custom glyphs set if your document calls for the same glyphs over and over. Choose New Glyph Set from the menu in the upper-right corner.
Note that Illustrator and QuarkXPress also have a Glyphs panel. And in Word, it’s Insert > Symbol > Symbol Browser.