Book Formatting

What is a hard return?

A “Hard Return” is placed into a word processing document when the “Enter” or “Return” key is pressed. It is most commonly used to separate paragraphs within a document. It is referred to as a “hard return” because it simulates a “carriage return” action used on typewriters to start a new line of text. In Microsoft Word and many other word processing programs, it will display as a character when hidden characters are displayed. To see this symbol, click on the button on the toolbar. This will also display other “hidden characters” such as tab markers and spaces between words.