Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Single space or double? The quirky confessions of a writer...

I realized two things today.

A. I'm a single spacer.
B. I go bonkers if it's anything but.

I'm crazy. I'll admit that. I was editing today my chapters. Everything I write... or edit is usually in single space. I like it like that. It reads fine. But then the moment it goes into double... or exactly 25 lines, it's like it's a whole different manuscript in front of me.

I don't know what it is.

Really. I don't. But suddenly it is not the same, tight, ok reading manuscript but something that just reads stupid and doesn't deserve to be seen. I get twitchy. Honestly it's that bad. I've closed documents before because they weren't in single space and just read wrong.

So I made a comment on twitter. I asked if there were others out there who felt like this? Because honestly, it's a weird feeling. It'll be perfect one way and the moment it's in a different format... bam!... it's that thing in the closet that you don't want anyone to ever see. I wasn't too surprised. 3 preferred double. 1 preferred 1.5 (which I will admit isn't too bad. And this was my trick when my school essays were too long...). And then my 1 for single spaced.

Conclusion: writers are a weird, quirky bunch.


  1. Alexia, You're a great blogger! I'm jealous. I need to learn how to do it better!

    I have to tell you I too am a single space girl. But you can't really write out revisions on a single spaced ms.

    Here's what I do (this was recommended to me from someone on RD... can't remember whom, but it's priceless)

    1. Open your document, change the page setup to Landscape. (yep, this really works).
    2. Highlight your document (ctrl a)
    3. Go up to format and choose single space
    4. Change the font to your fave (mine is Georgia because it looks like a printed book)
    5. Change or keep the font size (12 is of course my fave)
    6. this one is important. Go up to the ruler at the top of the document and drag the right margin inward to about the 5 inch mark. This gives you the white space you need on your printout.
    7.Optional- if you are just planning to read your ms- while the doc is highlighted, select 2 column format from the little icon. Now you have a ms that reads like a book.

    Seriously we writers are weird. ;)

  2. Oh wow.... I would have never thought to do that. Thanks for the tip!