Grand Design

It is now time for The Ninth Day to have its own interior designer! Some lucky Oolie will take what is now a simple Word document and turn it into a beautiful, professional layout using Adobe InDesign. From the outside, the interior design process looks simple—fonts and margins turn into square-ish pages of prose—but there is much more to interior design than can be seen and understood at a glance. For every project, thousands of typefaces are discarded before one emerges as the perfect choice. Then, point size and leading are chosen to fit that typeface in this specific project. Characters per line are counted and averaged out to see if the margins are too narrow or too wide. Tracking must be adjusted throughout hundreds of pages to eliminate those pesky widows, orphans, and runts…The list of tiny, crucial details could go on forever.

The interior design process is all about small changes that create big impact. If you’ve ever read a book—really, anything with words on it—and been distracted by the type or layout, then the designer made a mistake. Unless you’re a typophile or a designer yourself, then you shouldn’t notice the interior of a publication. As a reader, you should experience and enjoy the material, not think about margins or point size.

Whoever is chosen to be the interior designer of The Ninth Day will be tasked with creating a design that works with the text, but also works for the text. He or she will do extensive research into appropriate interior design for young adult literature. The design concept will be consistent with choices made on the book cover as well with the companion novel Blue Thread. The designer(s) will work for weeks, even months, to create an interior design that—if it is successful—the casual reader probably won’t even be aware of. But that’s okay, because we take beautiful things for granted all the time. The next time you open a book or magazine or newspaper, try to pay attention to the interior design. You might be surprised by how complicated an interior can be!

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