Polishing Your Writing: Some Proofreading Tricks (Part 2)

I was just wondering, between now and the last post have any of you tried the two proofreading tricks I mentioned last time? To be honest, I rarely read my work aloud but I do go through it after I am done writing. After that post though, I tried reading it aloud – walk the talk, you know – and yes, once again, its effectiveness was affirmed. Anyhow, here are a couple more tricks that would help you proofread your writing.

I know many of you out there are aiming for a paperless society but sometimes, nothing beats paper. Now don’t get me wrong – I am as “techie” as the next person. I can’t live without my PC – Word, Excel, Outlook and all. The thing is, when it comes to checking lists and proofreading written work, I always find it easier and more satisfying to actually have paper in your hands. I do not know if this is psychological or if it’s just me. Why don’t you try it and let me know what you think?

Here’s a no-brainer: ever hear of the function “spell-check”? Yes it works. Just click on the button and you’re good to go – well not really. Spell-check can detect wrong spelling of course but it cannot detect wrong usage. For example, instead of “too” you accidentally typed in “to.” Spell-check would not flag you for that. I guess a combination of these tricks would be the best way to go.

Before I end this post, I read somewhere that one way of proofreading is to read your document backwards. The writer was saying that reading out of sequence helps you spot errors. I don’t know, I’ve never tried it – maybe I will after this post. What do you think?

Originally posted on August 30, 2007 @ 2:01 am