Show of hands. Who learned to type on a typewriter?
Wow. Quite a few of you!
I hope this news isn’t a surprise, but double spacing is virtually no more when writing for publication. A single space is all that is needed / required between sentences for most style guides and a majority of publishers.
If you’re publishing your own blog and your own e-books you may retain the double spacing between sentences as a personal preference. But if you’re submitting for publication, a single space is all that’s needed in most cases.
*I’m saying most cases because the American Press (AP) Stylebook did call for the single space, but have gone back to the double space.
Programmers and anyone coding in HTML (for instance) on their blogs, know that it’s an effort to make a double space. Everything defaults to single space unless the special is entered to add an additional space.
It took me a while to get in the habit of single spacing and I still find old documents that are double spaced. When I first transitioned to single spacing, it was through the find and replace feature in Word. Now it’s just habit to only use one space.
No bad things will happen if you continue to double space between sentences; however if submitting for publication (as is always the case) read the guidelines carefully and if there is a style guide handy, double-check the rule for spacing between sentences. If you can make the best first impression with a publisher, even if it’s single spacing between sentences, you should do it. Right?
I’ve had this conversation a few times over the last couple of months. Some folks are adamant about the double space; others are surprised to hear single spacing is an option; and then there are a few, like me, who have converted to single spacing and can’t imagine double spacing any more.
Where are you in the single vs double space conversation? A convert? Not ever going to single space? Single space on special occasions?
Lisa J. Jackson is an independent writer and editor who enjoys working with manufacturing, software, technology, and realty businesses of all sizes. She loves researching topics, interviewing experts, and helping companies tell their stories. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.