Hyphens, En Dashes, Em Dashes
Q. How does one, using a word processor, make an em dash/en dash distinguishable from a hyphen?
A. You might have noticed that when you type two hyphens with no spaces around them in MS Word, your computer turns them into an em dash if your automatic formatting settings are on. (If you type spaces around the hyphens, Word supplies an en dash.) You can type an em dash on purpose using the keystrokes Control+Alt+Minus (the Minus key is on the numeric keypad). To type an en dash, try Control+Minus. Or go to Insert > Symbol > More Symbols, and click on the Special Characters tab to find both of these marks and others. For Mac applications and those other than Word, search online for “type [punctuation mark] in [your application].”