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Lately I’ve had a lot of orders for my Createspace formatting services and the first question every author asks me is, “What font looks the best?”. 

Since I get asked a lot of the same questions I thought I’d start doing some weekly articles based upon those questions. Hopefully they’ll be helpful.

Best Fonts for Print

createspace formatting servicesLike with most things in design, there is no real “right” and “wrong” answer when picking the best fonts for print. There are fonts that work better than others, but which of those you choose from is really up to you.

When I’m doing the interior layout for a fiction book I tend to use Garamond. It’s nice and compact. It’s easily readable and it usually allows for the chapters to fall on the appropriate pages naturally. Every book designer has their own favorite and I’m sure if you ask 10 designers they’d all have different lists, but for me Garamond is my #1 go to font. If the book is short and doesn’t have a lot of pages, then I’ll use Bookman instead of Garamond. Bookman has the same look of Garamond, the characters are just slightly larger which will give the book a few more pages without having to add any “blank” spaces throughout the book. And regardless of which font I’m using, I mostly stick to size 11 pt font. It’s large enough to read but not so large that it makes it look like a “large” print book.

If you’re not a big fan of Garamond or Bookman, other fonts that work well for print are Janson and Bembo. Both have that professionally printed look and won’t tire your readers’ eyes. While there might be fonts out there that look more “artistic”, they can cause your eyes to become tired after reading them for a lengthy amount of time. As an author, you want to do everything in your power to keep your reader engaged and that includes making your font easy to read so they don’t want to put your book down until they turn the last page.


What is your “favorite” font? Which font do you prefer to use when printing? Also be sure to check out my post on 3 Great Fonts for Book Cover

 

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5 Responses so far.

  1. Matt says:

    I like the look of that font. It’s something I never think about until I don’t like the look of it :)

    • Dafeenah says:

      Before I started formatting, it never occurred to me what font was in books but now it’s the first thing I notice. I use to just be able to “read” books now I dissect them lol.

  2. I’ve just received my proof for my pending novel FUNNEL VISION from CreateSpace, and now I’m wondering if my choice of Baskerville was a good one. It looks a little thready on the proof, even though it looks nice on the computer screen and my home printouts. In your experience, do you think that’s that going to be an issue with CreateSpace’s print-on-demand no matter which font I use? Have you ever used Baskerville in a book?

    Thanks for the post.

    • Dafeenah says:

      Hi Chris, yea that is often the problem. There really is no way to test it until you actually see your proof. Home computers don’t print exactly the way the proof will. I only use Garamond, Jenson, or Chapparal as far as the body of the text goes (ie paragraphs). For headings I tend to use whatever looks nice or if the author wants a certain “look” then I’ll use drop caps and ornamentation to suit what they’re going for. But the main text is always one of the three I stated above. My only suggestion to you would be to read the proof yourself. Start to finish and see if you notice it effecting your eyes or if after reading a few chapters do you start having difficulty if so then most likely your reader will too. In that case I’d suggest you change the font simply because you don’t want the reader to put your book down because it tires their eyes from reading. Hope that helps. Let me know what you decide to do.

      • I switched to Minion Pro for the body copy and just got the proof – it looks a hundred percent better. Like a ‘real book.’ I’m very happy with it. Thanks for the thoughts!

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