And even though Docs is constantly being upgraded, there are some features that it is still missing. For example Docs does not support page borders or drop caps.
One of the most commonly mentioned missing features is the ability to add text boxes. In Microsoft Word you can easily insert a text box, type in it, and move it around to any spot in the document.
In Google Docs, however, when you click on the “Insert” menu there is not an option for a text box. The option does exist in the “Insert” menu of Google Slides and Google Drawings, so hopefully we will eventually get an update to Google Docs that provides more features for adding object like text boxes. In the meantime there is a workaround that does a pretty good job.
See below for a video showing how to do this, and read the rest of the post for written directions.
Even though you can’t add a text box directly through the “Insert” menu, you can insert a Google Drawing and indirectly add a text box through that.
- First click the “Insert” menu and then choose “Drawing”
- This will open a pop-up window with a Google Drawing
- Now click the “Text box” button in the menu bar
- The cursor will now change to crosshairs which you can use to click and drag out the text box
- Once the box has been created you can type your text inside
- As needed you can change the font face, size, color, and other formatting. You may need to click the “More” button on the toolbar to see these options
- If you need to resize the text box simply click and drag any of the blue square handles on the edges or corners
- If you want a solid line around you text box you can click the “Line color” menu button to make it something other than transparent
- Additionally you can change the “Line weight” and “Line dash”
- Finally you can click the “Fill color” button if you want to color the inside of the text box
- When done, click the “Save & Close” button
- The text box will now be inserted into your Google Doc
- You can move the box around by clicking and dragging inside the box
- You can change how text wraps around the box by clicking on the text box and choosing “In line” or “Wrap text” or “Break text”
- If you need to edit the content of the text box, you will need to double click on it to re-open Google Drawings to make the changes
So the trick is to put a Text Box inside a Google Drawing inside a Google Document. Kind of like a turducken. We can call it a texdrawument.
Although this method is not as easy and flexible as it would be if the feature was fully implemented in Google Docs, it does give an option to insert a floating text box that you can edit in many ways.
Post by Eric Curts. Bring me to your school, organization, or conference with over 50 PD sessions to choose from. Connect with me on Twitter at twitter.com/ericcurts and on Google+ at plus.google.com/+EricCurts1