The MAC is not a Typewriter, by Robin Williams
This is a review for an amazing book. Don’ let its small size fool you, this book is packed full of amazing information. I had considered myself an average Joe who just typed emails, letters to friends, this blog, and your usual day to day social media posts. I did’t think I was doing anything wrong…until I read this book.
This book points out that many of use things such as an inch symbol in conjugations when we should be using a true apostrophe, we are hitting tab to indent paragraphs when we should be using an em space ( the length of exactly one letter M.), and how we are still using classic type writer rules, even though much of them are out of date.
Robin lays out some ground rules such as making sure you use proper kerning in your headlines, and why san serif fonts are best used for signage and headlines, while serif type faces are beast for the body copy portion of your text. She further explains how to use accent marks in the proper spots, and how to execute them on the MAC. She explains why using big blocks of all caps is unnecessary, and how the outline of the word makes it difficult for the brain to register.
The book also talks about how tabs should be used to create margins, and how you should never use your spacebar for aligning text. It talks about the beauty of hanging your quotes outside of the text box, instead of fitting your punctuation inside. All in all the book points out things we were taught in high school, and explains how the beauty of modern type today can eliminate a lot of unnecessary steps.
Robin Williams has written several award winning books on design, and some on the Adobe creative suite as well as a couple of type books. She has a quirky sense of humor, and a unique style of writing. Robin makes her pet peeves clear in her books, but they are all in jest. She also has a great reference checklist on the back of the book so that you can check over all of your text and fine tune everything to create a clean and professional layout. Text may seem like a dry topic, but Robin’s approach to writing makes it a quick, easy and fun read. The knowledge gained from this book will put you above your competition as these little tweaks here and there can make your work stand out above the rest. It will also make you look more professional.
This is a highly recommended read, and at3$ used, and $15 new (less if you are an Amazon Prime member), you can’t beat the wealth of information in this book!