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. […]

Creative Tips Newsletter

The first Creative Tips newsletter has hit the cyberwaves. The idea of this series is to help improve the world’s documents by giving basic tips on using Microsoft Word and similar programs that are as ubiquitous as the generally boring (or, let’s be brutally frank, downright awful) documents that are turned out by the millions […]