This site is dedicated to the memory of my parents and to our ancestors. If you are related to those listed, I hope this gives you a better understanding of their lives. Feel free to comment on anything posted, especially if you have additional or different information. The posts on this page chronicle my
research journey and provide resources and links. Genealogy is divided by parental lineage into Lowe and Bader. You can access these by
category from the menu and side links. Please be aware that this is an on-going project. Information will be updated as it becomes available.

My First Family History Book: Fonts & White Space


For my family history book, I was able to rely on the insider publishing knowledge I had about white space (make sure there’s lots), font readability and other tricks of the trade. For example, making the font larger doesn’t necessarily make it easier to read if the text is crowded on the page. Large fonts also tend to look less professional. 

For a polished page but better readability, it’s best to use a smaller font (9 to 12 points) but make the space between the lines larger than whatever the default ‘normal’ is set to in the word processing application. Books and magazines typically use a 9 1/2-point font but make the line spacing about 14 points high. I prefer to use a percentage for line spacing rather than a set point. Using a percentage for line spacing meant that if I changed the size of the font, the line spacing would change automatically as well. I played around with the fonts and in the end, I decided on a 10-point font on a 1.2 percent line spacing. 

And since the book would be read in print rather than online, I chose a serif font rather than non-serif. Serif fonts are almost always used for the printing of large blocks of text — such as those in books, magazines and newspapers. The serifs help the eye distinguish the letters more quickly. However, those same serifs can blur or look fuzzy on a computer screen, so san-serif fonts are better for online reading. 


This all sounds complicated, but I applied ‘styles’ throughout the book to make it easier. Each style was named for its use and had all the options set for font name, text size, line spacing, and indents. I had one style for Chapter Headings, another for Body Text, a third for Image Captions and so on. After I typed (or copied in) text, I applied the appropriate style. This use of styles made tweaking a breeze. For example, if I decided to reduce the line spacing or increase the font size, I made that change to the style rather than to the text. The moment the style was altered, all text in the document that had that style applied to it, instantly changed to reflect the new setting.  

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