I call the sixth error of self-publishing, font abuse. That not as prevalent and it once was, font abuse is using multiple font styles, with varying point sizes throughout a manuscript.
The author may view this as creative formatting, but the only thing it accomplishes is irritating the reader. At best, this barrage of fonts slows readers down; at worst, it causes them to stop reading altogether.
In one self-published book, the first page used four different fonts and even more point sizes for those fonts. There were words in bold, italic, and uppercase. It was a nightmare to read. Hoping it was an anomaly, I turned the page: two fonts, four point sizes, and some more italic formatting.
The variations in font shape and size repelled me. I didn’t want to read further. If I’d have pushed through, I’m sure a headache awaited me.
This was font abuse at its worse—and a telltale sign of a self-published book.
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Peter Lyle DeHaan, PhD, is an author, blogger, and publisher with over 30 years of writing and publishing experience. Check out his book The Successful Author for insider tips and insights.