And yet, when I met with an agent for a critique at the NJSCBWI conference I attended two weeks ago, she started off the conversation by telling me, in a seriously aggrieved tone, that I had (Crime #1) sent her my submission in her least favorite font. And if that weren't enough, when she tried to change the font to something more tolerable, everything went "all wonky" because (Crime #2) I had done such a terrible job of formatting. I got the strong impression that, had my crime spree ended with the use of Courier New, she might have courageously gritted her teeth and sailed onward, difficult as it would have been. But by following it up with Crime #2, I had truly drilled the last nail into my own coffin. Oh, the agent also really did not like my manuscript, by the way, but her response to that seemed so much less visceral; she was not remotely interested in the content, but neither was she personally offended.
It's taken me a while to figure out what was going on here, but I've got it now: I was being told that I had demonstrated an appalling lack of taste and judgment by utilizing what I should have known was a clearly inferior font in a submission to a clearly superior person. Or - perhaps even worse - that I knew full well how nightmarish Courier New was, but I simply didn't care. I was utterly indiscriminate (cf. "That's my last duchess painted on the wall"). In short, I was a fontslut.
I realized only today that I had been font shamed, and I was going to post about it when it occurred to me that I might actually not be the first person to come up with that phrase. Enter Google. I now know that font shaming is a concept that has existed for the Internet equivalent of millennia, i.e., at least two years. If you don't believe me, read this and this and this, and then join me in my hatred of people everywhere who will stop at nothing to let you know how much better they are than you.
So. Have YOU ever been font shamed? Please let me know. If there are enough of us, maybe we can form a support group!
UPDATE: Today I Googled "font snobbery," and what an education I've gotten! Thank God I didn't send my submission in Comic Sans; if I had, my picture might be up in print shops all around the country under a "MOST WANTED" caption. But I didn't see one mention of Courier New among the lists of Most Reviled Fonts. And besides, the people who seem most offended by certain fonts seem to be mostly graphic designers, who I suppose have a right to care about things like that. But the rest of us? Please. Get a life.