One Writer’s Journey

October 8, 2018

Font Choice and Readability

Filed under: Uncategorized — suebe @ 6:31 am
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A couple of weeks ago, I spent some time on Canva design tutorials.  One of the topics was font as in matching font to message and making things interesting but readable.

Imagine my surprise when my husband sent me an article he had spotted, “Sans Forgetica: The font scientists created to help you recall what you read.”   What it comes down to is this – there is a reason that people don’t learn as well as they should.  We make it to easy for them.  What you need to employ is desirable difficulty.  If they have to put a bit of effort into acquiring the knowledge, they are more likely to retain it.

Whether or not you accept this theory, it is an interesting idea.  I’m a big believer in the idea that you tend to appreciate things if you put some effort into getting them.  But how does that apply to font?

A team of designers and behavioral scientists from RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia worked to create a series of fonts that are more difficult to read.  They then tested these fonts on approximately 400 Australian university students.  The results showed that one font, which the developers named Sans Forgetica was legible enough that people could read it but difficult enough to encourage deeper mental processing and, through this, better retention.

Here is a list I was given to commit to memory this week.

Sans Forgetica

What do you think?  Will reviewing it typed out in Sans Forgetica help?



October 29, 2009

Memory Triggers

Filed under: Uncategorized — suebe @ 2:12 am
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"I've got this song stuck in my head!"

Whenever you read about using memory triggers in your writing, the author mentions smell and taste.  There’s no doubt about it.  Whenever I smell rose cologne I take a deep breath and relax.  That’s what my grandmother always wore.  Bread baking makes me smile.  My mother made homemade rolls for special occasions.

But music and songs really stick in our heads.  This weekend, my husband and I spent half an hour singing jingles for our son.  Oscar Meyer.  Armor hot dogs.  Alka Seltzer.  Chiquita Banana.  Almond Joy.  Klondike Bar.  We watch very little tv, and what we watch we tape to avoid the commercials, so I know these are OLD jingles.  Old.  But we remember them.

And have you ever gotten a song stuck in your head?  Maybe not even any of the words but just the melody.  My son sat in the hall while I was in choir rehearsal Sunday.  Later in the day, he walked by humming a few bars from Sunday’s anthem.  “I think we sang it in choir last year,” he said, referring to his school choir.  Nope.  He’d only heard it a few times that day, but it stuck.

All of this said, I’m not sure how to use music in my work.  Sure, I get a few bars here and there stuck in my head.  I can even remember songs that I learned in Girl Scouts 30 years ago.  But I can’t write the melody into a story.

So far, its just something to hum, and noodle over, as I go through my day.


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