Proofreading can be very stressful and near impossible if you’re close to deadline and you’ve been up to your eyes in the copy for the umpteenth time. Words begin to breakdown, punctuation looks unrecognizable and the text can start to swim on the screen. That’s how glaring spelling mistakes happen, making a reader baulk, teachers spit feathers or a potential new customer click off your page.
What you need is a fresh pair of eyes because you can’t see the words clearly anymore. You have what is known as copy-blindness. But fear not. My twenty-twenty vision will pick out those shout-out-loud typos and make sure correct spelling, grammar and punctuation are in use giving you copy as clean as a whistle.
The final check before anything to do with words goes to print. Don’t get marked down for typos or inconsistent American versus English spellings let me pick them up at this crucial last stage. From cross-referencing the contents page, checking footnotes, spacing, spelling and grammar (plus much more) this fine tooth comb read of the copy is a must.
Line after line after line of words need to be well-written, grammatically correct and coherent to the one that’s been before and the one that’s coming. Are you making a clear point with each sentence? Have you started a new paragraph for each new point? Do all the paragraphs link to keep in line with your argument? Is what your saying properly referenced and correct? Copy-editing is the part of the process before proof-reading and is invaluable in checking for consistency, clarity and flow and ultimately shaping your text into clear standardised understandable trains of thought from the opening sentence to the last.