25

How do I force TeX to completely use the 1st column before writing to the second column?

Right now I dont have enough content to fill one whole page. So the left and right columns are equally filled, leaving 25% symmetrical empty page at bottom. How do I fill the left column first, and then the right?

\documentclass{article} 
\usepackage{multicol}
\usepackage[scale=0.9]{geometry}
\usepackage{amssymb}
\renewcommand{\labelitemi}{\tiny$\blacksquare$}
\begin{document}
\begin{multicols}{2}    

%lots of text goes here

\end{multicols}
\end{document}
  • 11
    See documentation of multicol, section 2.2 Not balancing the columns. – Ulrike Fischer Apr 28 '12 at 15:50
38

Use the starred variant of the multicols environment:

enter image description here

\documentclass{article} 
\usepackage{multicol}% http://ctan.org/pkg/multicol
\usepackage{lipsum}% http://ctan.org/pkg/lipsum
\usepackage[scale=0.9]{geometry}% http://ctan.org/pkg/geometry
\begin{document}
\begin{multicols*}{2}    
\lipsum[1-6]
\end{multicols*}
\end{document}
22

As mentioned by Ulrike and Werner the way to stop multicols from balancing is to use the multicols* environment instead. But from the form of your question and your MWE I wonder if a simpler answer may not be: do not use multicols at all.

After all

\documentclass[twocolumn]{article}

or

\twocolumn[Some single column material] ...

will also get you two columns which aren't balanced and additionally work with floats in a more general fashion.

Basically you need to use multicol if you want one or more of these:

  • balance columns (at least sometimes)
  • switch between different column layouts on a single page (requires balancing obviously)
  • use more than 2 columns on a page
  • pagewide footnotes below the columns

But it comes at a price so if nothing of the above is what you are interested in then maybe you should simply remove the multicol package.

  • multicol is also useful to draw a vertical line between the columns. multicol can also draw the vertical line with a specified color and thickness. – Andre Sep 13 '18 at 13:50

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.