I'm learning about print formatting.  Those of you who have already mastered this, do you have preferences for fonts?  I've been trying to compare Century Schoolbook (12), Baskerville Oldface (14), Garamond (14) and Palatino (12).  I think Palatino may be a tad too modern for me, but all of them are clear at the sizes above.

Is there a "best" font and size?  And how seriously do they affect page counts?

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Times New Roman size 12 seems to be the font most accepted by traditional publishers and ebook formatters.  

This is what they want for submitted material, yes.  When they put it into the proper format for printing, though, it's usually a different font.

Actually, almost no books are published in that font.  I was told early on that it looks "amateurish", so I started looking around and it's just not a book font.  It's for like, office documents or something.

My publisher said (half serious-as usual)  "Use a font that starts with G"

For ebooks, apparently, you use that Times Roman because the Kindle or whatever changes the font anyway.

Seems like my first publisher may have used Perpetua, which looked like a nice, readable font. I'm not certain what my current publisher uses. I do know each book with my current publisher has a slightly smaller font than the one before it, because of rising costs of paper printing and trying to keep the cost of the book down, but I don't know what the font size was for each.

Thanks all!  The fonts I listed are recommended by Aaron Shepard's PERFECT PAGES. They used to identify the font in the back of some books.  Maybe they discontinued this. Small print is hard on old eyes, and by far most of my sales are to older people.

Oh, I know what you mean.  Little stories on how the font was developed, sometimes.  I always thought was so cool, like little history lessons about printing.

But you're right, it's only in the older books, isn't it.  That's a shame.

Maybe they all use like Microsoft designed fonts now or something.

Brand new here. ;) I saw this topic before my membership was approved. 

It's true that small print is hard on the eyes. Late last year I ordered one of my stories with Garamond and didn't like the lightness of the print. Never redid the formatting (been busy writing) but the best explanation I can give for not liking it was that when viewed next to the chapter titles, the light print made the book look off balance.

When I finish my current wip, I'm going to reformat with Bookman Old Style which is a font that I used on a novella last July and it came out nice.

Createspace is nice because you can order a proof and if you don't like it that gives you a chance to redo. 

Good luck. ;)


I think it's really a personal preference.  I used Garamond 12 for the Createspace version of my novella and I'm very happy with the result.  As Temple said however, the good thing with Createspace is that you can order a proof copy and change it if you don't like it.  

I could see how maybe somebody trying to keep page count down might like a smaller size of type.

I guess I came into this late, but it almost seems odd to me to see discussions of print books. The action all seems to be with ebooks now, at least for indie writers doing their own stuff.  

They did a print version of my "book" just for reviewers.  The new line doesn't have any print books, just Kindle shorts.

I've just assumed that's the way of things, but actually, people talking about type and the little notes about it at the end of the book  gives that a certain tristesse.

I wasn't going to do a print version either, but I had a few people ask for a printed copy and as print on demand is cheap and easy I decided to give it a go.  I haven't sold many printed copies online, but they have been great for friends and family as well as the odd promotional giveaway. 

Thanks, Liam.  Yes, I expect there won't be many sales, but perhaps one can garner a review or two.  Also, there are the libraries.

And signing and such.

My only signing, and only retail outlet, is a skateboard/tagger shop.  

SO proud.  :-)


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