Sep 3, 2012 Ξ Leave a comment

All the proof you need….

posted by nanda

Proofreading is the final stage in the editorial process – the final quality control (QC) check-through before publishing the text. However, proofreading must be practiced in our day-to-day written communications as well.

A vigilant proofing or proofreading is important to ensure that the write-ups or contents in a document are accurate and consistent. In other words, every book that goes finally to publishing or every e-mail that is being composed to client or the stakeholders of the organization has to be essentially proofread at least once. This re-look is obligatory to pay utmost attention to quality. Proofreading assures that you have not missed any awkward inaccuracies in your writing.

Why to proofread?

As stated earlier, proofreading is absolutely necessary to maintain quality. To reiterate its importance, here are some technical and principled reasons why one should vouch for proofreading.

The fact is, no matter how many times you have read and re-read your writing, there are chances of typos and mistakes because you are too close to the matter or subject when you are writing. This is a bit weird but true. To put it in simpler terms, when you are very familiar with the subject, you get blind spots. So, your eyes fail to read exactly what is on the page and you tend to miss errors. Sometimes, you do not realize that a mistake is made. Typos, grammar slips, and inconsistencies are extremely disconcerting, and they might even challenge the image of writer/editor.

Therefore, proofreading is a significant part of documentation process and it is recommended to set aside a considerable amount of time for proofing each time you pen down.

How to proofread?

There are different methods to perform the proofreading task. Choose the one that best suits you. Here are a few of them that can be considered as guidance:

  1. Read the text slowly.
  2. Read the text aloud and also silently.
  3. Read text backwards to focus on the spelling of words.
  4. Have others read it for a second check.
  5. Point the text with your finger or mouse pointer to read one word at a time.
  6. Print it out and read it. (This method applies to e-mails or write-ups with a modest word count.)
  7. Be careful that your eyes do not jump from one error to the next apparent error, thereby missing some subtle errors in between.
  8. Double check for small and little words such as or, of, if, it, and is and most importantly the homophones, for example, here/hear are often interchanged.

Note: Proofreading does not involve improving the writing style in any way. So, while proofreading refrain from editing or modifying the writing style.

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