Search This Blog

Friday, November 15, 2013

Edit/Format Idea for Overcrowded Docs

Borrowing Green Formatting from the Greats . . . ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Subscribers to this editing blog probably know how I feel about learning from the greats—in this case the Smithsonian magazine. You may also have figured out that I’m a greenie.

So, ta da! Introducing the paragraph icon. You know, the one that looks like a backward “P” with two heavy lines on the right. But instead of using it as an invisible formatting tool, Smithsonian can see its beauty and makes it a space-saving design element on the opening pages of their feature articles. That means the page has less white space (which costs money in print magazines), but it also may mean a little more space for nifty illustrations.

Smithsonian designers/formatters just stick one of these symbols into the copy anywhere there would normally be a new paragraph or the start of a new block of dialogue. That saves them lines between paragraphs and indent and end of paragraph space. 
 To make it ever-so-clear that this is intentional, they make the symbols a nice dark gray—a slight departure from the black used in their fonts. Here is information from Word how to make the paragraph symbol—one that can be seen—in your copy.
I think this design element would be especially useful for authors’ sell sheets where every fraction of an inch counts. To make your paragraph icons gray, click on your Font Color icon in the ribbon in your Word program.


PS: Subscribe to my free SharingwithWriters newsletter for more articles and tips like this and get a free e-copy of my Great Little Last-Minute Edits. Find subscription windows on the upper right corner of almost every page of my Web site
Carolyn Howard-Johnson edits, consults. and speaks on issues of publishing. Find her The Frugal Editor: Put Your Best Book Forward to Avoid Humiliation and Ensure Success (How To Do It Frugally series of book for writers). Learn more about her other authors' aids at , where writers will find lists and other helps including Great Little Last-Minute Editing Tips on the Resources for Writers page. She blogs on all things publishing (not just editing!) at her Sharing with Writers blog. She tweets writers' resources at . Please tweet this post to your followers. We all need a little help with editing. (-:

No comments:

Great Editing Is Great Marketing

Your First Marketing Offense: Write and Edit Great Query Letters