PowerPoint 2010: How to Create Presentation Outlines in Notepad
- Dec 13, 2010
Most PowerPoint users create presentations by inserting slides as they need them, and they often copy slides from older presentations to use them again.
This approach may help create presentations quickly, but such presentations have no thought or story. In addition, this is a sure shot way of creating a presentation with 50 slides when only 20 may have been sufficient!
The solution to this problem lies in creating the structure of your presentation outside PowerPoint. Begin by trying to create a message in your mind; see if you can sum up the reason or objective of creating your presentation in just one sentence. Narrowing the focus to one sentence would help you create a presentation that does not have too many confused messages; and of course that would result in fewer slides and happier audiences.
Next take a piece of paper and note what you want to add on each slide. In fact, you can probably do this task on your computer by creating an outline using Notepad, a small application that has been built into every version of Microsoft Windows.
Follow these steps to get started:
- Launch Notepad, which always launches with a new text file, as shown in Figure 1.
- At this point, type in all the text that you want to see within the titles, subtitles, and bulleted points within your slides. Type these on separate lines, as shown in Figure 2.
- As you can see in Figure 2, there’s nothing that sets a slide title apart from either the subtitle or the bullet points. For PowerPoint to understand the hierarchy of this content, you will have to format it so that there is a distinct difference within the structure of the types of content. Because Notepad allows minimal formatting with no option to apply styles or even make your text bold or bulleted, you’ll have to use tabs to organize all the text.
Follow these guidelines to do so:
- Leave all the text for the slide titles as they are.
- For any subtitle on a slide (such as your first slide), place your cursor right in front of the line of text that you want to format and press the Tab key once on your keyboard.
- For first-level bullets (on slides that have no subtitle), use the same approach: Place your cursor right in front of the line of text that you want to format and press the Tab key once on your keyboard.
- For second-level bullets, place your cursor toward the front of the line of text and press the Tab key twice on your keyboard.
- For subsequent bullet levels (third, fourth, and right up to level nine), place your cursor to the front of the relevant text content, and press the Tab key that many times (three times, four times, and up to nine times) on your keyboard.