Preparing text for layout
When you have invested hard work, creativity and time establishing your message to your audience, it is important that it not be spoiled by carelessness of something like an improper apostrophe.
When you provide us with copy, it is within our and your best interest that we take this extra step to prepare the document for layout. This is a simple value-added service that we offer to you on every job that is ingrained into how we work. With respect to your content, we have a well-structured checklist of typesetting rules we follow to keep consistency within a layout.
Our top 10 typesetting rules:
- All bolds, italics, underlined text (except hyperlinks), superscripts, subscripts, non-breaking spaces and special characters are searched and highlighted in Word to make sure these are carried over into the final layout, and brought to the attention of our proofreaders.
- Using built-in style sheets for heading structure within Word will help during layout formatting.
- Non-breaking hyphens change to regular hyphens. Otherwise, the hyphens will disappear when the text is brought into the layout.
- Double spaces—changed to single spaces.
- “Primes” (‘, ”). Changed to correct typographic marks, except in instances of measurements (foot, inch).
- Any hyphens that should be dashes (em- or en- depending on the context of the project are corrected). Spaces before and after dashes are left alone if that is the client’s preference, although technically there should not be any, especially with an en-dash in a range of numbers. (e.g. 2015–2016).
- Em-dashes should be used for sentence fragments like interruptions, pauses, afterthoughts, clarifications or for emphasis. They are also used to represent “nil” or “unknown” in a list or table of figures. En-dashes join a range of inclusive numbers. (e.g. 2–5 years, March 20–25, 2008–2009).
- Inconsistent spacing with obliques (/). There is no space before or after an oblique when used between individual words or letters, e.g., n/a, black/white.) Use one space before and one after when the oblique is between a group of words containing internal spacing. (e.g., you and me / me and you).
- Before placing text into a layout file, additional clean up of multiple tabs in a row, spaces before hard returns, and spaces between lines are removed.
- Print it out. The benefits of reviewing a hard copy versus your soft copy might just surprise you. What will glaringly stand out to you on paper can easily be overlooked on your screen.
We are your second set of eyes, combining our professional, high-quality standards with our best creative minds. We may not catch all errors, but our processes gives you a last line of defense that, in the end, can save you money and costs on AAs (link to AAs checklist).
In the end, our goal is to ensure you are delivered the best quality product that conveys the proper message with creativity to say the right thing to your audience.