One Space Or Two?

April 22, 2013

If you write for a living, you likely spend way too much time worrying about little things, like when to use a comma, whether it’s OK to split an infinitive or when to write in second person.

Nothing is too trivial to escape attention.  For example, I’ve long wanted to know what happened to the extra space at the end of a sentence.

It used to be routine to use two spaces at the end of a sentence.  Now, no one (except for real old timers, like me) uses two spaces.  When did one space become acceptable?

Two spaces are much better than one.  The double space reinforces the end of a thought.  It makes a sentence a sentence.

Maybe it’s more efficient to use one space, but if you want the reader to think about each sentence, an extra space can create an opportunity to pause for a nanosecond or so before moving on to the next sentence.

So give me back my space.



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