Resetting InDesign preferences for book design
Resetting InDesign preferences for book design is an option, but creates better looking typography. Please start with the default Adobe InDesign settings. Having said that, there is a number of changes to make to the default InDesign settings. This is not required but makes for better looking typography.
More tweaks can be made than what is listed here. Some of the adjustments depend on the typefaces that are selected as part of the design for the book. You want to keep your work “simple & professional,” so this is a partial list.
Settings for one book design document
If you are primarily designing books, then either open InDesign without creating a document or close all documents if InDesign is already open. Set the suggested defaults below. All documents that you create be resetting InDesign preferences for book design.
Settings for all documents
If InDesign will be used to design projects other than books, then create the first document for your book and apply these settings. Save the file and use it as the basis for the rest of the chapters or documents in your book.
When the book and book documents are closed and you open InDesign again, the original default settings will still be there.
- Tighten Kerning. Go to Edit > Preferences > Units & Increments (Windows), see the Kerning. Preferences > Units & Increments (Mac). Under “Keyboard Increments” change “Kerning / Tracking” to 5 / 1000 em from 20 / 1000 em.
- Paragraph Styles and Character Styles should have Kerning set to Metrics. If there are very few kerning pairs in a font, you can select Optical rather than Metric. If Metric spacing does not look right, try Optical.
- Tracking is set to 0. There are many reasons to adjust tracking. When type is set in a small point size, add tracking so that the letters do not look like they are touching. A headline in all uppercase, rather than lowercase, may look great when tracking is expanded to 100, 200, or more depending on the typeface, weight, size, and use.
- Hyphenation can be adjusted under the Paragraph Style, in Hyphenation. The Hyphenation Zone should set to be 0.5 inches, 12.7 mm, or 3p0 picas, depending on whether you prefer to work in inches, millimeters, or picas.
The conclusion is that it is a good idea in making the resetting InDesign preferences a valuable aid when designing books.