Font suggestions for William Faulkner book?

brokedesigner's picture

Hi,I'm working on a type project for school where we have to design a book of a classic american author. I have william faulkner. He's a bit crazy, deals with a lot of non linear storytelling, stream of consciousness, and multiple authors. However most of his subject matter takes place in civil war south so I feel like i need a font that is at once classic feeling and edgy. I need to choose two fonts- a display and a body copy font. Any suggestions?

Thomas Levine's picture

The obvious choice is the fonts from the first edition of one of his more popular works, especially there's anything notable about them. I'd take a look at them in a library.

will powers's picture

I'd suggest a slightly different approach than Thomas Levine's. Indeed, start at the library and look at editions of Faulkner's writings. But not only at the first editions. See how his texts have been handled over many decades. Then see how you can "improve" upon them or how you can work with the texts in ways that make sense to you. Keep in mind the ways in which Faulkner's books were set and printed when they were new. See if today's types and printing methods point the way for you.

Have fun. & try to read as much of his work as you can. It is great writing.


charles ellertson's picture

Unless I've forgotten too much in the past 40 years, only one of Faulkner's books is set in the Civil War years.

You should always read a manuscript (in this case, a book?) before selecting an appropriate typeface. Going out on a limb, e.g., without knowing what *this* book is, I'd probably pick a Scotch roman for the text. There are two digital fonts that are workable and have a "Scotch" origin. One is Monticello, perhaps better for older texts. The other is Miller. Both were done (digitaly) by Matthew Carter.

Whether or not a bourbon drinker could favor a Scotch font is better left to the bourbon drinkers.

Maybe after enough bourbon or scotch you could explain why you need a separate display font?

Thomas Levine's picture

I looked at three first editions. Typeface isn't so consistent among them as the general layout. This is largely related to the publisher, of course, so you may consider comparing his books to others of the time of both the same and different publishers.

And I second Will's suggestion.

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