Hi, I'm here to help with your Mac questions. I'm willing to keep working until you are satisfied.
I'm afraid what you describe means that the document itself has become corrupted. There is no real fix for that.
There are a couple things you can try...
One is to make a copy by dragging in the Finder. Find the document, hold down the Option key, and click-hold-drag the file to create a copy. Try opening it.
A second idea is to try opening it with a different program. OpenOffice can be downloaded for free and is a good substitute for Microsoft Office. You can get it at OpenOffice.org. Get it installed, and use the File Menu > Open command to try and open the problem document.
Also, and perhaps first, do you have a backup program running? Time Machine? If so, see if you have an earlier version in the backup.
Wow, thank you for this answer. I did try to make a copy by dragging to a new folder.But I did not use the Option key.
I am not sure my thank you came thru. I did try dragging the file into a new folder. It did not work.
Oops I see I can not hit return. I did try making copy. I doubt that I have a back up program running. I could down load Open Office. I bet the file is corrupt for some reason. thank you, Susan.
Try OpenOffice and if you have Apple's iWork, try Pages as well.
I have neither of these. Tried again to move the doc, copying to a new page
in word, but got the spinning colored ball again.
Think the doc. is corrupt, as you suggested, Steve.
OpenOffice is free, so it is worth downloading and installing it and giving it a try. http://openoffice.org
Just checking in. Did you try OpenOffice yet?