A new term has begun, and we are already in the thick of things. The manuscript has been finalized and typecoding is wrapping up, so our next step is choosing an interior designer. This is an incredibly exciting stage–it gives someone an opportunity to put a real, full-length book project in their design portfolio and it brings us one step closer to seeing what our book will look like in its final, finished form. Abbey Gaterud, our publisher, also teaches the book design class applicants for the interior designer position are required to take. Having personally trained each and every one of us, she’s a pretty good judge of who among us can really make InDesign sing.
The interior designer is responsible for a lot of very important elements of the final presentation. The casual reader won’t notice a good typeface or page layout, but a bad one can be a huge turn-off. Although The Ghosts Who Travel with Me is a fairly straightforward literary manuscript–no textbook-style multi-column grids, sidebars, or picture spreads–every element, even the most basic ones, must be designed with deliberateness and thought to work together for a clean, satisfying visual experience. The designer has to take into account the personality and tone of the writing, think about the needs the book’s readers will have, and be willing to spend a lot of time squinting at fonts. It’s a meticulous, time-consuming job, and an immensely rewarding one. I have no fear that we will be able to find an excellent designer from our ranks here at Ooligan.