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Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 4 comments
Medina Holland - 18 June 2017

I have just finished reading PAJF, a gift from my sister: as she enjoyed it so much and couldn’t resist scaring me with an unexpected parcel! That aside, I did find the characters interesting and the situations they stumbled into good and sticky. (l loved the Ritz showdown.) The main problem for me was the close spacing of the type, I feel the book would be easier to read if this was addressed. (Originally, I thought it was the size of the type that was bothering me but it is no different to other books that I have.) I wanted to raise this as I didn’t see it mentioned anywhere in people’s comments and it maybe something that could make a difference. As you are overseeing the publishing yourself, then there could be page size restrictions that I am unaware of and if so I apologise for picking holes in your efforts. If there are not, then please sort this out as I do not wish to go cross-eyed reading the next installment. (Laughing to myself at how small this comment is written!)

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    Christopher Shevlin - 20 June 2017

    Ah, thanks for telling me about this, Medina – it’s useful to hear. And I’m really sorry to hear that it’s too closely set. It’s because the cost of printing each copy depends on the number of pages. When I was setting it, I looked through the books on my shelf for the one with the most lines that still felt comfortable for me to read. Then I chose Minion Pro, a font that’s meant to be most legible at smaller sizes. I did a lot of checking of other books’ average numbers of words and lines per page, and a lot of tinkering with InDesign. The result is fine for me, but I’m long-sighted, so that probably makes me a bit more comfortable with smaller type.

    Could you tell me if it’s the closeness of the lines or the letters that’s a problem? I’ll be releasing a new book soon, so I could look again at PAJF when I do that. I’ll have to put the price up if I increase the number of pages, but if the book’s causing people physical (rather than just mental and emotional) pain to read then that’s probably a good idea.

    Please thank your sister for me for her parcel-scaring, and for enjoying PAJF.

    Oh, and maybe I can send you a free copy of the new book, to check whether that’s comfortable to read? If you could email me your address I’ll get one to you as soon as I have some.

    (Has anyone else had the same problem, by the way?)

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Matt Bee - 5 July 2017

Just started reading PAJF, loving it so far, but I’d agree and say the text is too dense and it put me off at first. Oddly, all my old PG Wodehouse books from the 70s are similarly presented but the modern thing seems to be to space the lines out more. Only just discovered PAJK by the way – it came up on Amazon as a suggested title from others I’ve bought. Looking forward to the next one. Matt

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    Christopher Shevlin - 14 July 2017

    Well, I’m really glad that you’re enjoying it, Matt – and thanks very much for buying a copy. I’m sorry about the denseness. I think novels have fewer words in them now than they used to, so maybe that’s why there’s more space between the lines now. Or maybe everyone’s just realised that it looks better. Anyway, in the face of this mounting good-natured clamour, I’ll do everything I can to make the new book less typographically dense, if that’s the right expression. And I’ll see what I can do about the old one.

    Thanks for letting me know,

    Chris

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