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Reorganising monthly information in Word

It’s a simple question about ordering monthly data in Word – there’s many answers which give a glimpse into what you can do with Office.

I want to have a monthly log of items, each month separated by a page or section break, but be able to “toggle” the pages to have the most current page at the top and the older pages follow below in order.

For example, I have entered pages for January through October, separated by page breaks, but I want to view them, from top to bottom,as October through January. ” – ‘Nafty’

Here’s some suggestions for how you could address the situation. They are only suggestions because we don’t know your exact situation – but hopefully they’ll point you in the right direction as well as give some ideas of the power available in Office.

Reverse Printing

Word can print pages in any order you like. If it’s just a matter of printing the pages in reverse order, go to the print dialog and in the Pages field enter something like ‘ 999-1’ which will print the pages in reverse order from last (assuming there’s no more than 999 pages) back to the first.

Enter a page at the start

There’s no law to say you have to put new pages at the end of a document. In your case insert a new page for February before the January page and so on. Ctrl + Enter will create a page break wherever you want one.

Sorting a Table

This would be very messy but we mention it for the sake of completeness.

It’s possible to make the entire document into a table then sort one column in either ascending or descending order as required. You’d have to make the sorting column a date or a month number since the default sorting is alphabetical.

If you wanted to go this route, it would be better to use Excel, see below.

Use a Table of Contents

If navigating a document is the issue then put a Table of Contents at the start with links to each monthly title.

To do this make sure the monthly title ‘January’ etc use a particular style, probably Heading 1 or Heading 2. Then enter the Table of Contents. The TOC acts as links so you can click on a TOC entry and you’ll jump to that part of the document.

Use Document Map

Document Map is similar to the TOC except it’s not part of the document itself. Go to View | Document Map and a summary of the heading titles will appear on the left of the document window. Not only can use the Document Map to jump around the document you can also use the map entries to re-order the document content.


Once you get more than a page or two of tabulated data in Word, it’s time to consider more efficient ways to enter and manipulate that information. The last two suggestions go that route.

Use Excel

Once you have information entered into Excel cells (probably copied from your Word document to start off) then you have a lot more options available to you.

The data sorting, filtering and grouping systems in Excel are much more powerful than Word.

Once you have your list or log formatted the way you want, it’s quite easy to paste into a larger Word document or better ‘Paste Link’ so that any changes to the Excel data are reflected in the Word document automatically.

Use Access

When the amount of data gets larger or the formatting needs become varied or complex the ultimate solution is to make an Access database. From Access you can produce reports in various forms as well as extract information from the data store into Excel or Word as required.

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