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How to Make a Line Break Instead of a Paragraph in WordPress

I was just asked this question about making a line break (or new line) in WordPress and thought I’d write an article on it in case it helps someone else.

We want to start a new line in our content without it adding a gap/space between the new line and the previous one. Is this possible?

The first result I got when searching for an article on single line breaks versus paragraphs was a six year old WordPress.org forum post with a five year old reply decrying the lack of help available. A little more searching revealed that there are in fact a couple worthwhile how-to articles written this year. Nonetheless I’m going to use this as an opportunity to continue warming up an idea that I put into action on the churchthemes.com blog earlier this week (which is to post quick answers to questions).

Paragraphs

If you hit ENTER after typing some text in the Visual editor in WordPress, you’ll create a new paragraph. Let me illustrate this.

      If you type some text then then hit ENTER

      You get a second paragraph like this.

The person who asked the question was seeing this normal behavior. WordPress assumes you’re writing out paragraphs which is almost always what you want.

Line Breaks

What they really want is get rid of that space between the lines. I can imagine this being useful for writing an address on multiple lines. There are surely many other applications. This is an example of what I mean.

      Hold SHIFT when hitting ENTER for the second line to be like this…
      See how this second line is directly beneath the first?

Did you catch that? You need to hold the SHIFT key while pressing ENTER to create a single line break instead of a new paragraph.

I whipped up a screenshot while playing with this to give you an actual example inside of WordPress.

line-breaks

So there you have it, folks — how to create a single line break instead of a paragraph in WordPress.

7 Comments

  1. You have a talent and should write a book. :) The whole article could be rewritten as just three words “Press SHIFT+ENTER”.

  2. Just wondering how you do this if typing on an iPad – there’s no shift key! Thanks very much.

    • I don’t know if pushing shift (the up arrow) then return will do it on iOS but if that doesn’t, you could switch to Text mode (next to the Visual tab at the top-right of the editor) and make a single line break there.

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