You've run up against a long standing limitation in FileMaker Report layouts and there are no simple fixes. The first issue is a known bug common to most versions of FileMaker if I understand your description correctly: FM11 printing? "Only one half of a line prints" again, like FM6
In MS Word splitting paragraphs of text so that neither the first line or two of text is not left by itself on the previous page and avoiding putting just one or two lines on the start of the next page is called "widow and orphan control". FileMaker does not have this feature--though many have requested it: Feature Suggestion Form
Trying to determine the location of the page break will be difficult to do by counting words or letters given how modern proportional fonts vary so much in how much space a given letter takes. iiii and WWWW are the same number of words and letters, but the second requires quite a bit more space than the second.
Hmmm, just speculating here....
Wonder if you could set up a script that previews the last page of your letter in preview mode with a custom dialog popped up where you can enter a number in an input field. Your script would then insert the specified number of returns before the first line of text in your last paragraph to adjust it "down" to get a better split over the page break. This could be set up in a loop so that you can enter a number and click one button to stay in preview to see the result of the adjustment, with a second button to click to accept the adjustment and stop the loop...
thanks phil... that is the bug issue i was experiencing, but that doesn't present too much of a hassle for me because i am able to shift the field up or down a few pixels and it resolves it.
i really like the script suggestion and i am going to use it (thank you!). one question about that... instead of inserting spaces, i would like to just slightly increase or decrease the line spacing (and/or tracking) throughout the text field as needed to expand or contract the letter. i looked through the text formatting functions but didn't see anything that adjusted the line spacing. is this possible to do? or would i just need to make multiple layouts with the text spacing set at different values (.9, 1, 1.1, 1.2, etc) and then go to the appropriate layout as the user adjusted the value via the script?