Everyone who writes for fun or profit dreads sitting down to work only to end up staring at a blank document for hours on end. Writer’s block comes for us all eventually, but the solution could have been lurking in your font menu this entire time.
While my cooking style is best described as a loosely-contained tornado, I am a painfully, laboriously slow writer. I constantly dig myself into bottomless editing holes, obsessively cutting and pasting and control+Z-ing one sentence into submission before allowing myself to move on. Generous people might call this strategy “exacting” or even “methodical,” but I know that it’s just another procrastination strategy. I get all the satisfaction of doing work AND all the comfort of putting it off til the last minute — until deadlines creep up and make me regret every choice I’ve ever made in my life.
Nothing I’ve tried has improved my writing workflow as noticeably and immediately as switching my font to Comic Sans.
The entire point of Comic Sans is that each letter is totally distinct from the others. It’s why people who suffer from dyslexia love this font: the irregularly-shaped letters make it easier to break words down into their component parts and properly interpret them. If all the b’s look kinda like p’s, which also resemble q’s and d’s or maybe even g’s, that’s much harder to do.
Even though I have the opposite problem — I don’t need any help scrutinizing my writing at the syllable level, thanks — writing in Comic Sans has helped me break inefficient habits I’ve clung onto since college. The words all melt into a cohesive mass that I’m able to consider as a whole, rather than immediately needing to pick apart, so I write faster and more fluidly. As a freelancer, that’s never a bad thing.
To show you what I mean, here’s an excerpt of my most recent post in 13-point Times New Roman:
And here it is in 13-point Comic Sans:
I can read the Comic Sans copy without my eyes totally glazing over, which is more than I can say for those same words in Times New Roman.
If you’re struggling with writer’s block or overly nitpicky self-editing, try setting your word processor’s default font to Comic Sans. Just do it. Your inner snobby aesthete will protest loudly at first, but the sound of finished drafts will drown those screams out pretty quickly. Besides, you can always change the font in the CMS.