1. Use typographer’s quotes
Use true quotation marks and apostrophes instead of using inch marks and feet marks. Place all punctuation inside the quotation marks. Adobe InDesign allows you to always use typographers quotes via the Type option in the Preferences panel.
2. Use the correct dash
Hyphens (-) are for hyphenated words, as in ‘non-conformist’
En dashes (Option + -) are used to indicate duration, as in Monday–Friday, or 9–5. The convention is to not have a space either side of the en dash.
Em dashes (Shift + Option + -) are used to replace colons or parentheses, in order to signal a change in thought. For example: Christmas is on the same day—December 25—every year. Again the general convention is to not have spaces either side of the em dash.
3. Never stretch fonts
Although many programs allow fonts to be scaled vertically and/or horizontally, don’t alter the original typeface by stretching or condensing the letters improperly. Certain type families provide you with a lot of flexibility, so you should not need to destroy/alter text.
4. Choose a flexible font
When typesetting large amounts of copy, choose a type family that has all the weights and variants you might need (including condensed and expanded versions if necessary). Optimum body copy sizes is 8-10pt. (This very general guideline will be dependent on the font in use, as well as the space available.)
5. Optimum line length is 45-75 characters
Again, bear in mind that this number may vary depending on the font in use, the word spacing employed and the width of the text columns.
6. Emphasis (generally) requires only one signal
When emphasising a word/s, especially in running copy, use only one signal, i.e. either bold or italic or small caps or a colour change. And use that signal consistently.
7. Use a single space after all punctuation
Digital type characters are designed proportionately, which allows for the correct practice of using one space after all punctuation.
8. Fix your orphans and widows
Orphans are paragraph-opening lines that appear at the bottom of a column or page. Orphans can create uneven visual alignment and can interfere with reading and comprehension.
Widows are paragraph-ending lines or words that appear at the beginning of the following column or page. Widows can create too much white space between paragraphs, interrupting the reader’s eye and disrupting the reading process.
9. Spell check
Run a spell check on your design before you go over it for a final line check.
10. Line check
Run your eyes very carefully along the ragged edge of text—words that appear to ‘hang’ beyond the average measure in a paragraph need to be addressed. This might require some adjustment of one or more of the following: tracking; kerning; word spacing; or it may require the insertion of a non-breaking space (Command + Option + X).
Please note, the above information has been sourced from the Shillington Design Reference App.