What’s in a font?

Quick on the uptake, as ever, but I’ve just caught this excellent video on the history of typography:

It’s funny how much the right font matters. There are some fonts I cannot abide to work with, and others I’ll use fleetingly but intensively. More than once, I’ve given up on reading a book because I found the font so unpleasant. When I first started writing, I only used Courier. With the benefit of hindsight, this was pretty much exactly as juvenile as my early stories. Then, after working in Times New Roman for years, I switched to Arial for The Visitors. I’ve started my new novel in Baskerville, which I love. At college, I use Gill Sans for all my planning documents, and in my video work I tend to use Century Gothic or Mrs Strange, which could scarcely be further apart.

The more I discover about fonts, the more I come to appreciate the vast psychology behind typography. It’s a gigantic field, and I tend to stick to knowing what I like.

One of my Twitter very short stories is about fonts:

She was Arial Black. He was Wingdings. “Why can’t you take anything seriously?” she wept. “Maybe you need to lighten up,” he snarled.

Any favourite fonts out there? I’m assuming, of course, that everyone avoids Comic Sans.


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