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Proofreading And Editing Without Mistake

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    Looking for tips to improve your proofreading and editing skill? Whether you are writing an article or dashing off an email to a business associate, you want to make sure the material you produce is as mistake-free as possible.

    An innocent spelling or grammar mistake can easily change the meaning of your words. In addition to clearly communicating your thoughts, you will look a lot more credible and professional when your writing is free of errors.

    However, proofreading and editing your work can be challenging, particularly if you do not have experience in this area. Here are a few tips to help you produce writing that is clear and error-free.

    Read your material out loud

    Sometimes our minds will overlook grammar and spelling mistakes when we are reading silently to ourselves. In fact, the mind does not see individual words but rather batches of words at a time.

    Reading out loud forces you to look at each word individually, which can help you find mistakes. Additionally, it is easier to catch awkward wording when you hear the material.

    Use the built-in spelling and grammar checker

    Word processing software typically has built-in programs that will check your spelling and grammar. However, these programs are not perfect, so do not become dependent on them.

    Only use them as a screening tool to produce a usable first draft of your material. Employ other proofreading and editing techniques to catch mistakes the program may have overlooked.

    Look for homonyms

    Homonyms are words that sound similar but have different meanings. For example, ‘there’ and ‘their’ sound the same but one word indicates a location while the other designates possession.

    Take your time and look at each word within the context of the sentence to ensure you have the right one.

    Correct different errors at separate times

    To avoid getting confused or overwhelmed, concentrate on proofreading and editing your material for one type of error at a time.

    The first time you read the article, check for spelling mistakes. The second time, look for grammar errors and so on and so forth.

    Leave the material for a short while

    Sometimes our minds will get used to reading the material that we become inured to the mistakes it has.

    Set aside the writing for as long as you can and then reread it with fresh eyes. Any proofreading and editing mistakes will practically jump off the page. As an alternative, you can have someone else read the material.

    » Yours Sincerely Or Yours Faithfully?