How Do I Insert a Text Box in OpenOffice?

By Aaron Parson

OpenOffice 4 Writer has two ways to insert an area of text into a specific location on a page. The basic text box on the Drawing toolbar has only a few options, such as border thickness and background color. If you need additional settings, insert a frame instead. Frames can contain formatting, such as columns, and you can flow text between multiple frames on separate pages.

Draw a Text Box

Click the "T" icon on the Drawing toolbar, then click and drag in a document to create a text box. If you don't see the toolbar, open the "View" menu, choose "Toolbars" and click "Drawing." After you place a text box, begin typing to enter text. Click anywhere outside the box to return to typing in the main document. To return to typing inside the box, double-click it. If you single-click the box, the sidebar opens to the Area panel, which has options for changing the box's background, transparency and border. Click a text box once and drag it to move the box, or drag the handles around the edge to resize the box.

Insert a Frame

Open the "Insert" menu and pick "Frame" to open the Frame dialog box. Enter a size for the frame on the first tab, then look through the remaining tabs for any other formatting options you need. For example, you can create columns on the "Columns" tab, change how the frame fits in the page on the "Wrap" tab, and set the frame's outline on the "Borders" tab. To have text flow between multiple frames, pick another frame as the "Next Link" on the "Options" tab. After creating a frame, you can drag the handles on its edge to resize it. To alter any other settings, right-click the frame and choose "Frame."