Moving facing pages to get rid of the orphan first & last page in Adobe InDesign

Adobe InDesignA reader recently contacted me with an issue he was facing with regards to a booklet he was working on that was setup as Facing Pages in document setup. His issue was that in his 8-page document, page 1 and page 8 stood alone as single pages, while 2-7 were spreads. Whatever he tried, he couldn’t move page 8 in the Pages panel to the left of page 1 where it would appear when printed. This makes it quite difficult to print mockups, or create crossover images on the front and back cover. While this behavior is “normal” for InDesign (and Quark) and is no problem for commercial printing, some people simply want to see it on screen as it will appear when printed. Thankfully, there’s an easy way to “fix” this issue. With the 8-page document open and set to facing pages, your Pages panel will look like the image to the right. Page 1 stands alone, 2-7 are spreads, and page 8 stands alone. To make a mockup on your own printer, you want page 8 to appear just to the left of page 1 – which will allow you to stick pages 8/1 to the back of pages 2/7 and pages 3/4 to the back of pages 5/6, fold them in half and put them together just as they would appear when printed. Simply moving the pages as is will do nothing but change the page order in your document, but leave page 1 and page 8 as stand alone pages. Not exactly what you’re looking to do. To fix the problem, simply uncheck the Allow Pages to Shuffle item in the Pages panel flyout menu as seen above. With that done, you can now selectively move pages 1 and/or 8 (or whatever the first and last page numbers are in your document) to their rightful place in the Page order to allow you to print them the way you want (see the image at left). The hitch? You’re probably going to have to adjust the auto page numbering options if you have your pages set to auto-number. But this is a simple task and can make life easier when printing proofs. While I explained to the reader why this InDesign feature works the way it does, I completely forgot to tell him how he can get around it. Hopefully he’s still reading here and will find the solution he was looking for. Sorry man, my bad!

2 thoughts on “Moving facing pages to get rid of the orphan first & last page in Adobe InDesign

  1. Thanks so much! I had the same frustration and this was exactly what I was looking for!

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