Sunday, January 25, 2009

Tip (or mini-post)

I'm one who rewrites a LOT -- probably, too much. But it's just how I do it....and I recently discovered a way to get a fresh look at a ms. after many, many rewrites.

I was reading something over for what I hoped would be the last time; but I wasn't really reading. I was just kind of looking at the shapes of the letters and admiring them. I get really attached to fonts and this ms. had been written in one of of my two current favorites, Big Caslon. So I changed it to a font I REALLY HATE, Courier.

I made it big, so it would be extra-obnoxious. And guess what? After awhile I started really reading and noticing all the little things that needed to be fixed.

But maybe this only works if you really get attached to fonts? I always have; even when I was a child I liked some fonts way better than others. Then I hated Bodoni, which is now my other favorite font -- probably I didn't like it as kid because a magazine I disliked used it for everything. I really liked Times Roman and Baskerville; but maybe just because favorite books used them.

ANyway, I notice fonts! This so-called tip may be totally obvious to others who do, but it worked for me.If anyone has any other tricks for looking at something with a fresh eye I'd love to hear them!


Anonymous said...

Hi Libby,

What a great suggestion for revision! I am on the fourth revision of my current novel and so I can relate.

And, yes, I love fonts! I always write my manuscripts in Ariel or Times New Roman.

But cards, letters, e-mails, flyers, etc. I have many favorites.

My program has Baskerville, but not the others you mentioned.

My favorites are:
Papita (in bold 18)
Lucinda calligraphy
Mercurius Script

I get really excited when I find a new font that I like.And disappointed when my Microsoft Word doesn't have it. I know I could get new fonts, but have never taken the time.

Anyway, I like your tip and I am going to try it.


Anonymous said...

I love courier. Well actually, I don't love it... but it's one of the few readily-available fixed-width fonts. Thus, it's quite handy when you're trying to line up a table or draw stick figures with text.


Libby Koponen said...

Thanks guys! I wondered after posting this if it sounded idiotic to express such strong feelings about fonts. I'm glad at least two other people feel strongly about them too.

And it's also really good to know that some people love -- or at least like -- Courier, since I have a Mac and I think when the ms. went out, it appeared as Courier on PCs.

So thanks for relieving my worry about that too!