How to format a wordsearch in InDesign

Ok, so this may seem a little random but it really puzzled me at the weekend so I thought it was worth writing a quick blog about. 

I’d been given a workbook to complete and had been supplied with text in a word document for the wordsearch – when importing it into Adobe InDesign it obviously looked more than a little rubbish…

View of wordsearch artwork in progress in Adobe InDesign
Vicky Flintham

Vicky Flintham

Experienced Creative with a demonstrated history of working in the graphic design industry. Skilled in Creative Design, Print Management, Advertising, and Adobe Indesign CC. Strong professional with a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) focused in Graphic Design from Leeds Metropolitan University.


So here’s how I quickly (after some puzzling of my own..!) managed to format it into a lovely clean and simple wordsearch… Basically the aim of the game is to convert this text into a table… 

Firstly, select all the letters in your wordsearch and in the top menu bar go to: Edit >> Find/Change. 

The following dialogue box will appear.

Find/Change - find what? add space - Change to - add comma. Click change all - then done
View of wordsearch artwork in progress in Adobe InDesign


The letters which had been sent across to me had spaces already formatted between them, hence this step. 

Add a space into the ‘Find what’ field, and then add a comma into the ‘Change to” field >> select change all.


Your text should now look a little like this… make sure you have no commas at the end of each line before you take the next step.

View of wordsearch artwork in progress in Adobe InDesign
Adobe Indesign colour swatches


Note that I’ve selected ‘comma’ as the column separator (… and suddenly it all becomes clear!) And hey presto – you have a table with all the letters evenly spaced out.. 

Now to style it. 

To delete the evil black separating lines from the table – go to your swatches palette and deselect the stroke colour.


Finally select the text in the table, and format the colour and font to match your design. To ensure even spacing between the letters, centrally justify your text.

 Here’s the finished wordsearch – hope this helps someone out there!! 🙂

Final wordsearch design