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Can’t Delete Last Page of a Document

T.E.W. wrote:

Do  you have some magic formula that will allow me to delete a page that refuses to delete? It is one page at the end of a chapter.

The clue to this puzzle is likely the second sentence: it’s a page at the end of a document. There are two possibilities that I can think of:

Book Page Numbering

If this document is part of a book, and the book panel is open, then my guess is that the Insert Blank Page option is turned on in the Book Page Numbering Options dialog box. (You can find this inside the book panel flyout menu.)

Insert blank page

This feature is cool — it automatically adds a blank page, no master page applied, to the last page of a document when your document ends on an odd-numbered right-hand page. And it only does it when you have Continue on Next Odd Page page selected. (Of course, if you have continue on next even page, then it will add a blank right-hand page.)

But of course, if you’re not expecting this, it’s crazy-making! Every time you try to delete a page, it immediately pops back.

Smart Text Reflow

If you have a long text flow, and you have Smart Text Reflow enabled in the Type pane of the Preferences dialog box, InDesign may also add pages to your document. You might even just have a couple extra blank paragraphs at the end of a story and InDesign will keep trying to flow them into a new text frame on a new page.

David Blatner

David Blatner

David Blatner is the co-founder of the Creative Publishing Network, InDesign Magazine, and the author or co-author of 15 books, including Real World InDesign. His InDesign videos at are among the most watched InDesign training in the world. You can find more about David at
David Blatner

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8 Comments on “Can’t Delete Last Page of a Document

  1. If you are talking about deleting an empty page, I think you can use:

    Preferences>Type>Delete empty pages.

    Hope this helps!

  2. To add or delete extra pages in an InDesign Document just go into the “File” tab and press “Document Setup”. Alternatively, just press Alt + Ctrl + P to get to the same menu.

  3. Hello,

    I have placed text from a word file into an indesign cc file. It is a longer text around 220 pages, now my problem is that I want to remove some pages which has text which I don’t want, somewhere in the middle of the document and can’t do so. Pls. help not able to sort out this one since last 4 days…….

  4. Hi David, thanks for your comments on the Page Deletion issue. I have one more question: how can I consolidate different the files into one file (InDesign CC). For example, if one of my Indesign CC folder has 12 different documents/chapters how do I make one consolidated file. I don’t this is possible by using the Book command. Can I have your views on this. Like we combine various PDF files, can we combine different Indesign files too.

  5. Hi David. I tried the trick of disabling smart text reflow in preferences type. I also tried preferences > Type > Delete empty pages. Yet, nothing seems to work for deleting two empty pages near the beginning of the document. The dialogue box says the pages have an object in them, but they are clearly empty. What might you recommend, David?

    Thanks so much

    • Susanne: Three thoughts: Zoom way way back and press Cmd-A (or Ctrl-A) to see if there is anything on the page that might be off on the pasteboard that you’re not seeing. Second, just click OK and delete the pages (just bypass that warning). That’s usually what I do. Or three: if you’re really nervous, try exporting the document as IDML then opening the IDML and trying again (that rebuilds the document from scratch and sometimes weird document corruption problems go away).

      • Rebuilding the file by exporting to idml solved the problem for me. I had to go through the whole document, though because some things changed from the indd to the idml.

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