Drop caps not working with variables


In a book I’m writing I’m using a number of variables (fields/variables) to define the name of characters - this is because I could need to change them later in a consistent way. Everything works but drop caps: whenever a paragraph starts with a variable, drop caps don’t work even though the style has been properly defined (drop caps work fine when the paragraph starts with plain text).

Is it a bug? A known limitation? Any workaround?


Looks like a limitation. The same behavior occurs with cross-references. Does not work in AOO 4.1.3 either, so probably that functionality was never implemented. Report at https://bugs.documentfoundation.org/enter_bug.cgi?product=LibreOffice&bug_status=UNCONFIRMED.

I do not see any workaround beyond the obvious: Avoid using variables in paragraphs where drop caps is needed.

Instead of variables for names, perhaps it would be enough to use Edit → Find & Replace → Replace All to manage them. So for example if your character is named “Bladorthin” then replace all occurrences with “Gandalf”.

More Find/Replace capability is provided by AltSearch. Try setting a character style for the names to make searching more precise. Maybe even create a different character style for each name.

Since styles may vary for the same “variable” in different paragraphs (thus replace will not work correctly) better use some scrambled name. Example use Bla1dort2hin.

Thanks Jim for confirming it’s a limitation. Not a big trouble: at a certain point I’ll “freeze” the character names and I’ll replace the relevant variables with their contents. It will fix the thing.

Thanks for the tip about AltSearch.