Monday, November 05, 2007

All I want is 12 point font.

My designer says I can't have it.

Why do you want it, he asks.

Because 11.5 is too small, I say.

No it's not, he says.

Yes it is, I say.

It will look stupid, he says.

I need to be able to read it, I say.

You need to get your eyes checked, he says.

My vision is bad, I say, but a lot of other people have bad vision too, and most books for this audience are set in 12 or even larger.

Who else can't read this? he says. Only you.

This isn't a democracy, I say. I'm the editor and therefore you should do it just because I told you to. But even if it WERE a democracy everyone else agrees with me that the font is too small right now!

Then you're all a bunch of morons, he says. I've made the font even larger than it was in the original 5 x 8.

Well then I need it even larger, I say, because I need it to STILL be readable when we reduce it to 5 x 8 for the paperback edition next year.

It's going to look like a juvy, he says.

I'm the editor, I say. I just need 12 point.

You can't have it, he says.

I NEED it, I say.

I can't do it, he says.

I don't understand, I say. You get paid by the page--if the book is longer, you get paid more. So just make it bigger.

You're wrong, he says. I can't do it, and I won't.

I NEED 12 POINT FONT!!! I say.

You're going to be sorry, he says.

14 comments:

David L. McAfee said...

Aren't you in a position of authority, here? I can't imagione talking to my superiors like that.

He shouldn't need to, but if it comes down to it, will Robert back you up?

Maprilynne said...

*shakes head* Oh dear.

Anonymous said...

You need to take a good look at your blog.

IT IS UNREADABLE ...

because it's white on black.

I've been a book designer and typesetter for 27 years, so I know what I'm talking about. There's a good reason books, newspapers, and most magazines are printed black on white: they're easier on the eye than black on white or any other cockeyed color combination.

I'm sure I've pissed you off, but there it is.

moonrat said...

but you don't understand--*i* don't need to read my own blog. so it doesn't actually matter what it looks like.

angelle said...

and yet, anonymous doesn't say anything about if 12 pt font is better than 11.5 pt font. that's all i really want to know. screw the color schemes. i'm just curious abt 11.5 vs 12!!!

i personally think it depends on the font type. like courier new at 12 is just way too big. that's why i used to use it on my essays in college back when i needed to hit a page count, and i couldn't think of anything more to say.

writtenwyrdd said...

Just when you thought you loved your designer, too...

I gather you got what you asked for in the end?

And despite what anonymous says, I find black on white PAINFUL, especially when you have that high gloss paper for really expensive books and colleges texts. I have incredibly light sensitive eyes, though, even wearing highly tinted glasses to read.

David L. McAfee said...

That'd weird...I could have sworn I could read your blog just fine.

Huh. Shows what I know. You and your 'unreadable' blog. Hmph!

:)

Church Lady said...

Anon, show thyself!
You have a point, but why hide?

I used to (okay, almost 15 years ago) work in software design. White on black is hard to read.
Now, if we're talking date night, that's a different story.

I can offer a crash course in screen design, if anyone requests it.

I'm on my second glass of wine. Why do I blog like this I wonder.

I love your blog, and willingly struggle to read it.

:-)

moonrat said...

i was recently toying with the idea of changing the template, so maybe now is the time to have a serious discussion. let's take a poll.

so far, re: white on black:

thumbs up
Writtenwyrdd
David

thumbs down
Anonymous
Church Lady

Froog said...

Black-on-white is de rigueur for the printed page. It's such an established convention that anything else would just look weird. Maybe you can play around a little with degrees of 'off-white' for the paper, but that's about it.

But that doesn't hold true for other media at all. Cognitive scientists might debate whether certain text/background colour combinations are intrinsically "easier to read", but I doubt if there's much variation, provided the contrast is sufficiently high.

Black-on-white on the Net is (rightly) perceived as BORING, and is fairly seldom used. Other colour combinations are far more visually arresting (even if some of them might be marginally less readily legible). I don't think Blogger would have created these template options (made by professional designers, and endorsed by their adoption by thousands upon thousands of bloggers) if they were going to be unattractive or difficult to read.

This "anonymous" is a bit cracked! A designer?? How creative can someone be who can't even come up with an amusing alias for themselves on a blog?!

Bernita said...

Black on white.
Please.

Precie said...

Perhaps black on cream...

writtenwyrdd said...

I find white on black a bit difficult to read, but I dislike black on white because it hurts my eyes. Black on cream is what I have on my blog, but really, you can leave it as is and it's readable enough for me. If you go for a change, how about black on gray??

Alice Kildaire said...

damn, I just wanted to say thanks fro fighting the good fight on the 12pt font, which makes it so much easier for folks like me to read in the dark...didn't realize I was stepping into a pile of do and do not...lol...personally I hate the generic black on white approach on the computer screen, the white on black can be a little harsh on the eyes at times, but I think it's very telling...if you're worried about your readers' eyes you could always make the text off white so it wasn't quite so stark..or you could always say "screw you guys, my blog, my colors" and stick your tongue out at everybody!