Thursday, May 14, 2009

Stop Everything

Go and read this.

I couldn't have put it better myself although I will add two little bits of information:

I am an Arial reader through and through. I just prefer the bigger font and cleaner letters.

When you submit your manuscript, unless otherwise instructed, use Times New Roman - you can fit more onto a page and many agents ask for the first 50 pages - and you really do want to get as much in front of them as possible to begin with.

Now if you haven't already, go read the linked post.


  1. I submit shorts in TNR unless otherwise instructed, but if I could it would be Verdana all the way - it's my favourite font.

    And here I go with my second 'Good God I'm an Idiot' moment of the week. The first time I submitted The Poisoned Apple it was in Courier font - first 50 pages and all... That's two pieces of brilliant advice I've read this week - by Sunday, I'll be a genius.

  2. Interesting.

    I prefer to read in Verdana on screen, and probably Times or a Serif font off screen.

    But I thought Courier New was the standard submission font?

  3. Courier and Arial tend to be preferred because they both have clear and evenly spaced lettering - I think they call it TrueType font.

    But never take anything for granted. If a market states they want manuscripts in a standard format, then use courier or arial for shorts, but if it is a novel sample, send it in TNR.

    If they name a font, use it - some people are looking for the smallest reason to reduce their pile. If they don't, then return to my above advice - TrueType or TNR for longer works.

  4. They're called Fixed Width or Monospace fonts. I subscribe to the blog 'I Love Typography :P'

    Makes sense though using TNR for novels. Thanks for the tip.

  5. Courier is a monospaced font, meaning that each character takes up the same amount of space on the page: five m's in a row are just as wide as five l's.

    Arial is not. It is a proportional font, meaning that the width of each character on the page is proportional to its actual width, so five m's take up far more space than five l's.

    Both Courier New and Arial--and Times New Roman--are TrueType fonts. Apple developed TrueType fonts to make them scalable in the days when laser printers were in their infancy. They licensed the TrueType fonts to Microsoft, so the important thing today is that these three fonts (known as Courier, Helvetica, and Times Roman on the Mac) are similar to look at and "can be used to typeset the same documents without reflowing the text" according to Wikipedia.