I have purchased an InDesign template, complete with text, headings, and chapter numbers.

I have deleted chapters 2 - 8, and now I want to rename the text Chapter IX to Chapter II, but the text is not editable - it looks like it is a predefined section. I cannot select it using the 2 cursor tools either.

How do I change the chapter number? Thanks.

1 Answer 1


Your chapter titles are set up as text variables which are controlled in the main menu via "Type > Text variables > Define". This is an advanced Indesign feature and not very straightforward if you are new-ish to ID. There is however a lot of documentation online about this if you are willing to dig into it, eg. https://helpx.adobe.com/indesign/using/numbering-pages-chapters-sections.html

However, the easy way to fix this is: 1. left click any of your "apparently" locked chapter numbers, 2. right click on the same line of text and a popup menu appears, 3. choose "Convert numbering to text" and this will turn it into plain & unlocked text which you can edit as you wish.

  • Thanks Lucian. CTRL + click does not allow me to select or alter the text of the Chapter number. CTRL + ALT + L does not unlock the spread either. I am using InDesign CS6.
    – Steve
    Commented Sep 4, 2016 at 11:29
  • They must be on a locked layer then. Check your layers palette, do you have more than one layer?
    – Lucian
    Commented Sep 5, 2016 at 8:47
  • No, the text is not a locked layer.
    – Steve
    Commented Sep 7, 2016 at 3:26
  • I would have to see your source file at this point, if you can upload it somewhere.
    – Lucian
    Commented Sep 7, 2016 at 9:55
  • Great, i have replaced my original answer (above) with a complete new one which should get you started. Hope this helps?
    – Lucian
    Commented Sep 9, 2016 at 9:15

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