Book Interior: Typefaces and Readability of your Book's Interior

The interior of your book is just as important as the cover.  In fact, it just might be more important.

For me, the design of the book’s interior is liken to…

“getting the book to speak to the reader, while being a soundless physical page.”

Once your book is purchased you’ll need to hold the readers attention. Certainly good content has a lot to do with it. Good editing and proofing as well. But the real reading is done from the typography that is set… designed, formatted, sized and styled to hold the readers attention and make them feel comfortable, safe and secure and not want to put your book down before they turn yet one more page. Compelling!

The typeface being used is of great importance for it is what the designer has to work with for presenting the compelling atmosphere of the interior. Some designers believe that each book needs a different typeface to represent the ‘feeling’ of the book, while others feel that if an author finds a face they like how it represents their voice, the words they write… they stick with it. I believe the Harry Potter books did just that.

We have been “taught” through exposure, to feel comfortable with reading a typeface with “little feet” otherwise know as serifs. Typefaces such as Times Roman and Garamond are known as serif faces and when used for your interior text will give your reader an easy read. Typefaces such as Ariel and Futura are known as sans-serif (without little feet) and are best used for heads, subheads or chart and graphs. Although I’ve seen several books using a sans-serif for the body text, which is to be considered a matter of preference.When you are presented with your proof, be sure to print out a page or two to be sure you feel the words talking to you as they and you move sentence by sentence into paragraphs and pages pass like time does when you’re having fun.

Be sure to request test pages of your text layout for your approval before your book is formatted.