I wonder if anyone has any idea how to make indents for more than the first line in a paragraph? I obviously understand that I can work manually to make this happen but want to set a paragraph style that enables for the text to re-flow without me having to make a million manual changes all the time I just want to make one change.

Is it possible to add a script? Unfortunalty it doesn't work with the dropword-method (Second line indent in inDesign.

Edit: I'll attach an image of what I mean. I'm especially interested in how to make a paragraph style for the first paragraph in the picture. enter image description here

Thanks in advance!

  • What do you mean by "more than first line"? Do you mean to indent all lines of a paragraph? Perhaps you could post an image showing what you want to achieve?
    – Wolff
    Commented Feb 18 at 14:33
  • No, I don't mean all lines in general. I mean 2 lines, or three lines or whatever number of lines you want.
    – vendela
    Commented Feb 18 at 14:40

3 Answers 3


Aside from my initial solution, I think there might be another way here: you can use tabs and soft returns in your initial 3 lines, and this way you can control that opening gap.

Then, you can adjust the tab indent from the paragraph settings.

I'm assuming you know how all this works, and not going to include all the details.

enter image description here


Indenting an arbitrary number of lines

I don't think there's a standardized way to do this. But I have a slightly hacky solution using Drop Caps.

Make a transparent frame which has the width of the indentation you want and a height less than your leading.

Copy and paste the frame into your text as the first character of the paragraph.

Set Drop Cap Number of Lines to the number of lines you want to be indented.

You can save the style of the anchored frame in an Object Style and thereby control the width of the indent globally.

Having a single word unaffected by the indent

It seems you also want to have a single word that's unaffected by the indent. More hacking is required.

Using Baseline Shift

If you do as shown above, you could have the single word in a paragraph before the indented paragraph and lower it the height of one baseline using Baseline Shift.

The downside is that you'll have to have an empty line where the single word used to be. And that the method might be hard for others to understand if they have to work in your document.

Using Anchored Objects

Alternatively you could ditch the former method completely and just use a separate text frame for the single word with Text Wrap applied. To avoid everything getting messed up when editing, you could paste it into the main text frame.

Sadly, an anchored object with text wrap can only push away text on the following lines, so you would also have to add a tab character before the anchored object and finetune the Anchored Object Options.

Quirky solution, but the upside is that if needed you can have several lines of text inside the anchored text frame.

In the end a more manual solution, like the one suggested by @Lucian, might turn out to be the least cumbersome way.

  • Thanks. How would you do if the first line starts with a word/text, then tab to aline with the indent for the second and third line?
    – vendela
    Commented Feb 18 at 15:17
  • I don't quite understand what you mean. Show me an image where you've done it manually.
    – Wolff
    Commented Feb 18 at 15:39
  • @vendela, if you just mean having some sort of heading in a separate paragraph before the paragraph with indented lines, you can just make another paragraph style for that paragraph with a general indentation set to the same number as the the width of the anchored frame .
    – Wolff
    Commented Feb 18 at 18:14
  • I've added an image in my question (thought I did that last week already but apparently not) which I think makes it clearer what I mean.
    – vendela
    Commented Feb 22 at 13:09
  • @vendela, OK I've added some ideas.
    – Wolff
    Commented Feb 22 at 20:43

This is pretty elementary if you use two paragraph styles:

  • hit the usual Enter wherever you want in the paragraph (after 8 lines of text in my image below)
  • create a separate style for this initial paragraph (P1) with indent applied (i also applied a red color so you can see the separation, but normally you should use the same color)
  • make sure the space before / space after in both styles are set to "0", so it looks like its just one continuous paragraph
  • so you are now looking at two paragraph styles, P1 and P2, separated by the normal paragraph return, first paragraph indented, no vertical space in between, same leading, same font, etc
  • then, if you know how to use the "Next Style" setting, you can set P2 as next of P1, and then you apply these faster

enter image description here

  • I'm sorry but that's not what I meant. I'm talking about ONE paragraph with a 2–3 lines indent. I thought I added an image to show what I mean but seems like I didn't. But I've done it now! Basically I'm looking for how to make one paragraph style that enables me to make indents for the first, say 3, lines in the paragraph.
    – vendela
    Commented Feb 22 at 13:12
  • INDD does not have built-in settings for what you need, but i found another way to achieve this, only after you posted the actual image. Adding a second answer.
    – Lucian
    Commented Feb 22 at 20:05

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