More Thoughts and Tips on Formatting for Cold Hard Type

Eventually all those who are included in the book project will have to type out their manuscripts. I explored formatting issues yesterday. Again, it seems like the next strategy is to match up a Word document to the format requirements. Document settings will vary based on the typewriter’s typeface. I set the Document margins at .75 and resized the page at 6×9 (width x length). This time I settled on Courier New 11 for the font. This seems to have matched up with my typewrite’s typeface. Then I set the margins on the typewriter (English keyboard, therefore not metric), starting the left margin at two inches simply to center the page. I set the right margin at seven inches. Now, here’s the weird part, and I don’t pretend to be a math person, but this 5 inch width matches up with 4.5 on my regular ruler. Go figure. I’m sure someone can explain this to me. In any case, transcribing from the computer allows me to know when to start a new page on the typewriter.

This title page begins after several required spacings. The second page would look more full.

9 Comments Add yours

  1. Richard P says:

    As I guessed, your typewriter must be 11cpi, so one inch = 11 notches on your typewriter’s ruler. I found that, by coincidence, 10-point type is simulated on the computer by 12-point Courier font, and 12-point type is simulated by 10-point Courier. So it makes sense that 11-point Courier would work for you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. mcfeats says:

      I always am happy to learn new things.


    2. John Cooper says:

      I don’t understand how that can be. Whether on the computer or on the page, 12-point type must be larger than 10-point type, whenever it’s displayed under the same conditions.


  2. Bill M says:

    I never gave much thought to matching typewriter pitch to Word or any computer documentation program formatting. Sounds like a real challenge with all the differences that will be submitted.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. mcfeats says:

      I think so. Hopefully everyone will be able to make the adjustments.


  3. John Cooper says:

    When you say “on the computer” do you mean on the screen? While a Word document laid out in inches should be accurate when it’s printed out, screen display is another matter, since different computer displays differ in the number of pixels per inch–and the software usually has no way to tell how many. If your computer display has, say, 108 pixels per inch, and your software assumes that there are 90 pixels per inch, a document displayed at “100%” on your screen is going to appear too small.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. mcfeats says:

      Richard pointed out that the typewriter’s ruler measurements are not in inches but in increments of characters. The Word doc was fine. The typewriter’s ruler isn’t based on measurements of inches nor the metric system.


      1. John Cooper says:

        Seems like a distinction without a difference. If the typewriter types 10 characters per inch, then whether the typewriter’s ruler measures 10 characters or 1 inch is immaterial. I suppose I’m missing something.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. mcfeats says:

        The actual increments on this typewriter’s ruler—10. . .20 . . . 30. . . 40–are not inches. They simply measure characters based on the typeface. I assumed, incorrectly, that they were inches—1, 2, 3, 4.


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