# Proper way to do a “page break”

Lets assume that in my latex code I have the following paragraph as an example.

The leaked cabled from the US embassy to Washington indicate that in the run up to the May General Election Mr King told the Ambassador Louis Susman, that he was worried about the Conservative leadership’s “lack of experience”. Mr King’s fears, expressed in a meeting on Feb 16, were sent in a cable to the US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, and disclosed on Tuesday night by the WikiLeaks website.

When I generate the pdf, the annoying thing is, that the last three words will be on a new page, also it looks like that:

The leaked cabled from the US embassy to Washington indicate that in the run
up to the May General Election Mr King told the Ambassador Louis Susman, that
Mr King’s fears, expressed in a meeting on Feb 16, were sent in a cable to
the US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, and disclosed on Tuesday night by
-------------------------------------------------- [start of new page ]
the WikiLeaks website

More text to follow.


This looks rubbish. So what I am trying to do is the following:

 The leaked cabled from the US embassy to Washington indicate that in the run up to
the May General Election Mr King told the Ambassador Louis Susman, that he was
expressed in a meeting on Feb 16, were sent in a cable to
\newpage
\noindent the US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, and disclosed on Tuesday
night by the WikiLeaks website.


Is this the proper way to solve such an issue or is there an easier way to do that?

Many thanks

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–  Charles Stewart Dec 1 '10 at 13:50

Rather than manually forcing a pagebreak, or as Harald suggested, setting your page penalties to allow TeX to figure out how to do what you want, you might also like to consider:

1. manually increasing the pagelength by one line: \enlargethispage{\baselineskip}
2. manually reducing the pagelength by one line: \enlargethispage{-\baselineskip}
3. locally adjusting your page margins (e.g., use the geometry package or perhaps using this code).

Still, if it were me, I'd certainly try Harald's suggestion first.

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I admit to having solved an especially sticky problem with line and page breaking once by shrinking the font by some (very small) amount, and even reducing the interword spacing a little. The bag of possible tricks is virtually bottomless. –  Harald Hanche-Olsen Dec 1 '10 at 14:21
@Harald, good point. Which reminds me: using the microtype package with the right options setup can often reduce (and sometimes increase) several pages down a hair. –  Geoffrey Jones Dec 1 '10 at 14:25

The thing you are trying to avoid is called a widow: A single last line of a paragraph on a new page. TeX adds \widowpenalty between the last two lines of a paragrap, so if you declare \widowpenalty=10000 the page will not be broken there.

Of course, that is going to mean an underfull (or overfull?) page, unless there is enough stretchable in the vertical glue on the page to compensate.

Similarly, there is \clubpenalty added between the first two lines of a paragraph.

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How can I add "glue"? –  Mario S. E. Oct 30 '13 at 16:13
@MarioS.E. Glue is the (somewhat whimsical) plain TeX term for what LaTeX calls stretchable space. You find it around stretchable formulas, and sometimes between paragraphs (if it is specified as part of \parskip). Or you can add it explicitly with \vspace, just remembering to have a stretchable component. –  Harald Hanche-Olsen Oct 30 '13 at 19:17