Looking good in print isn’t just about “art”

Ann Wayman, whose excellent blog is a terrific resource for freelance writers in any field, left a comment the other day about an author whose book had been “designed” by someone with super-powerful design software, but who clearly had never bothered to learn the hows and whys of graphic design. It wouldn’t, Ann conjectured, sell […]

The Battle for Good Looking Documents

I’ve been amazed how many people have told me — enthusiastically — that after reading some of these Creative Tips they are battling to overcome their years-long habit of typing two spaces after a period. Those typewriter habits we learned at our mothers’ (or fathers’ secretaries’) knees are sometimes hard to break, but folks tell me […]

Creative Tips #5: Typewriter Habits You Should Just Say “No” To

Number 5 covers such things as “two spaces after a period” and other typewriter practices that don’t belong in proportionally-spaced type. It’s also true that when you type something in a word processor these days, you’re not strictly “typing” in the accepted sense of that word. What you are really doing is a simple form […]

Creative Tips #4: Blank Lines and Rogue Space Bars

This week’s Creative Tips for office software users covers the dreaded (by designers) “extra blank line” between paragraphs, why not to use them, and the Better Way to space your paragraphs; why spaces don’t work to make text line up from one line to the next, and how and why to use tabs instead. You […]

Getting Rid of Uglies

From the amazing amount of feedback I’ve been getting to the Creative Tips newsletter, it’s clear that there’s a vacuum of basic “how-to” information on simple layouts and making documents look good in standard office-type programs. This is mildly surprising, considering how many books, websites, etc., have been devoted to the topic over the years. […]

Typefaces and Fonts — Your Opinion Counts!

Thomas Phinney, the noted type designer who designed at Adobe for many years, is conducting an informal survey of people who use type (fonts, typefaces) on their computers. He’s interested in how people use the terminology of type, and although some of the questions are undeniably of interest mainly design geeks he also wants input […]