Preparing Your Manuscript for Typesetting, Part 1

A manuscript you submit to a publisher or literary agent will follow certain guidelines — plain fonts, black text on white paper, no fancy formatting, generous margins and double-spaced lines. Individual publishers have their own preferred submission format, which you’ll find quite easily on their website. Any of these apply when you submit to an […]

So you want to learn Photoshop

I’m often asked by friends and associates to teach them this or that about Photoshop, among other graphics applications in Adobe’s massive catalog of industrial-strength software. I’ll spend half an hour or so going over how to solve the particular problem they’re wrestling with at the time. It’s fun, it breaks up my day a […]

Typing speed tip for Word and Open Office users

If you write business letters or other company documents, there are almost certainly some terms (like your company or product name), that you end up typing a lot. This might not be an issue if your company name is “Acme, Inc.,” but something like “Serious Business Strategies” or “Life Enhancement Supplement” might get a bit […]

Microsoft Office 2010 gets a movie trailer

Ever since Sprint’s success with their “movie trailer” marketing campaign for the Instinct cell phone, it seems every tech marketer has to have movies. Now it’s Microsoft, with “Office 2010 — The Movie.” It’s been up on YouTube for a couple of weeks, so if you haven’t caught it yet, here’s the link. Actually, it’s […]

Microsoft Announces Office 2010 Free Web Services

At Microsoft’s annual Partner Conference in New Orleans, they announced the “Technology Preview” of Office 2010. This means the new programs will be available to members of Microsoft’s partner network and developers around the world to examine, test and provide feedback. Part of the plan for Office 2010 is an online service, some of which […]

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 […]