This week, let's talk about the type of font to use for your e-book. According to Shlomo Perets' article, Fonts Can Make or Break PDFs, "intelligent use determines display and/or printing success." I totally agree. Some fonts are way better than others for electronic documents, especially for those of us who have eye problems, wear corrective lenses or spend a great deal of time on the computer.
Often if I like the layout and fonts in an e-book, I'll check the Document Properties to see what the author used. To do this with Adobe Reader 7.0, I click on File, then Document Properties, and then click on the Fonts tab to get the list. That's how I know that Times New Roman fonts were exclusively used for Sasha White's novel, Abduction, which has a nice cohesive look to it and is quite easy on the eyes.
How much difference does the font style make? Since PBW is also an electronic document of sorts, let's have a look at a couple right here*.
The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dogs.
Comic Sans MS:
The lazy dogs went after the quick brown fox.
Copperplate Gothic Bold:
The quick brown fox's fine bod attracted the attention of an alien.
(All Sasha White's fault, naturally.)
The interested alien abducted the quick brown fox.
The dogs were now lazy, pissed, and out one fox.
Lucida Sans Unicode:
But there you have it. Aliens 1, Dogs 0.
MS Reference Sans Serif:
Thus the quick brown fox became gorgeous mammal specimen #989, destined to be auctioned off as a pleasure slave on a fem-dominated world.
Times New Roman:
Now you'll never be able to type the quick brown fox sentence without thinking of erotic alien abduction.
I've been mostly using Arial, Eurostile or Courier with my stuff, but I'm also experimenting with this e-book, so I'm going to try some new fonts. Would be nice to get a bit of an antique look to my text. A font like Copperplate Gothic Bold or Enviro, however, can be hard on a reader's eyes, so lately I've limited using fonts like them strictly as accent fonts (good for short things like titles, bylines, chapter headers, URL linkage, etc.)
What's your favorite e-book font? Least favorite?
*Note: If you'd like to learn the html code to mess with the fonts on your weblog or web site, take the online tutorial here.