Place Word and rtf documents

The script lets you select doc, docx, and rtf documents in a folder and places these documents in a single InDesign document. The script shows the following window:

Place word document in InDesign

Type the name of the folder you want to use or click the folder icon to navigate to a folder. The script remembers the last 10 used folders.

The script then shows all the doc, docx, and rtf files in the selected folder:

Place word documents in InDesign

The selected documents are placed in the order in which they appear in the list. To change the order, select a document in the list and use the Up and Down buttons to move the item in the list. You can select several rows and move them as a group (though in CC this doesn't always work well; if you experience a problem moving a group of items, move single items. CS6 and earlier do not have this problem). Remove removes the selected items from the list (just from the list: the document on disk is not touched). After moving documents around you could have the following:

Place Word documents in InDesign

Finally, select the documents you want to place and click OK. The script opens a new document and places the selected documents in it.

So that you can find the original documents easily in the new InDesign document, the script places a string at the start of each original text: %%% followed by the name of the placed document.

A note on CC

Unfortunately, if you changed the placement order of the documents, that order isn't always passed through to InDesign correctly so that files may be placed in the wrong order. This is a problem in InDesign CC and later, in CS6 and earlier the problem doesn't occur. It's a random problem. If you notice that the files are not placed correctly, try again. There's a good chance that the placement order is correct on the second run. Another possibility is to change the names of the files so that the displayed order is correct to begin with. Note that this is a problem of the script's dialog system, not of the script or InDesign.


Unfortunately, it's not possible for a script to use InDesign's presets for placing Word documents. Before running the script, you need to create a preset and set it as the default. Do as follows.

Create a new document and place a Word document, showing the import options: File > Place. In the Place window, tick Show Import Options:

Place Word rtf document in InDesign

Then select any doc or docx file (you're not going to do anything with that file, we just need it to make InDesign show the import options window). Then click Open. The Microsoft Word Import Options window appears. In that window, change any settings to your needs. Press Save Preset to save the settings, then press Set as Default to make these settings the default.

Place rtf and word files in InDesign

Close the import options window and close the document without saving it. Now run the script to place the documents: it will use the settings that you made the default just now.

Version history

2 Oct. 2014: Added a note about a CC ordering problem. Updated the script here and there to make it more efficient, functionally it hasn't changed.

14 Jan. 2013: Posted.

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