Thinking about publishing your book? Feeling like something is missing in your writing? Here’s how proofreading can help you!
Whether it’s an essay, manuscripts, novels, articles, CV’s or job application forms, proofreading is a must. Spelling mistakes, bad grammar, and typos can hurt your work.
It’s very easy to make these mistakes and sometimes even after going through the article, making changes and revisions, there’ll always be a few errors you missed and overlooked. This is where proofreading comes to play a vital role and saves your writing from getting rejected.
So, if you’re a writer, and want your work to be published, here’s how proofreading can help you turn it into a masterpiece.
What is Proofreading?
Proofreading is the last step of a writing process before the writer submits it for publication. Not only is it vital for checking spelling and grammar, but it’s also highly effective in making sure that the writer’s ideas and messages are correctly communicated to the readers.
If your writing doesn’t match with what you’re trying to convey then you’ll end up receiving backlash and negative comments from your target audience. Your readers may not want to read such writing. To avoid such an undesired situation, proofreading is a must.
Why is it Important?
Proofreading helps to produce high-quality work, whether it’s for professional or academic purposes. When done right, clearly and thoroughly, proofreading can be the catalyst between writing something that delivers what it’s supposed to, or it can be a total mishap.
Not only that, but it can also be the key difference between getting your work accepted or rejected in a prominent journal or publication company. No writer is capable of creating a masterpiece without revising, reflecting and reviewing their content before the final version is done and sent for submission.
This is why proofreading is so vital. It can help your writing improve, as well as make sure your message is conveyed clearly to your audience.
Difference Between Editing and Proofreading
Many of us think proofreading and editing are the same, but they’re not. These are two very separate processes and have many differences.
While proofreading deals with the surface level systematically; editing delves into the material and entails clear understanding. Proofreading can eliminate wrong spellings, grammar and sentence structure errors. But editing focuses on reorganizing paragraph structures, clarifying ideas and the overall quality of your writing, as well as conveying your message more successfully. Editing is more related to the content of your text.
The main goal of proofreading is to prepare your writing for submission or printing. Whereas, editing removes inconsistencies, errors and refining or opposing ideas.
Proofreading will help in improving your writing skills and the editing process helps you to become a more compelling writer. You can also take help from professional book publishing services that might help you in making your task easier.
Important Tips and Tricks for Proofreading
Practice makes a man perfect, we all know this to be true. To be good at something you have to keep practicing. It is the same with proofreading.
A professional proofreader can proofread from 10,000 to 15,000 words in a single day. This is astounding, more so since the process of proofreading requires them to pay close attention to every detail.
It’s not possible to obtain these skills overnight, both proofreading and editing entail the use of reading and writing techniques. Here are some tips that will help you to stay on the right track:
Reading Out Loud
One of the best facts about using a word document file is the features that come with it. For instance, there’s a feature that highlights common errors.
This gives you the chance to pause, come back to it later and also work on other sections all at the same time. Make sure you’re taking full advantage of this neat feature!
Don’t Forget to Take a Break
It’s never a good idea to spend hours staring at a computer screen. Not only is it mentally draining to sit and read several words all day, but it also makes you lose your clarity and concentration.
Remember that it’s important to take breaks in between. It doesn’t matter what your preference for a break is, the idea is to stay away from the screen for a while to give your mind a break.
Having a Strategy
You’ll never go wrong with having a strategy. Proofreading requires a systematic approach. Instead of feeling overwhelmed from reading so many pages, it’s time to be smart about it.
You have to be thorough and methodical. Try dividing the manuscript into sections and see if that helps. If that doesn’t sound good then you can follow a different strategy like taking it one line at a time.
Printing out the manuscript and working on the hard copy can be a great way too. This also exempts you from staring at a screen for hours on end. So, it’s a win-win!
Feedbacks are Vital
Take Advantage of a Proofreading Software Program
When it comes to proofreading software programs, there are plenty. From students to authors, anybody can use it. Platforms like Elsevier, Grammarly and Creative Savant offer automated proofreading services and editing to help improve your writing.
These services will let you know if you’re using the wrong phrase or word too often. It will present you with alternatives and give you suggestions as well. Although they are often not free, it’ll be a shame not to use proofreading softwares to your advantage!
Stay Away from Distractions
Lastly, proofreading should be done in a quiet environment. Having a comfortable spot where you write can be immensely beneficial.
It’s not easy work, being a proofreader. There are sentences after sentences filled with errors a proofreader has to check. You can easily get distracted, make a mistake or miss a line entirely if you’re working in a noisy environment.
In conclusion, we’d like to say that proofreading is indeed important, and it helps you to grow as a writer. You get to learn about your writing style, improve it and shape it into your signature style.
In a writing, process editing should always come first, but both are crucial when you’re planning to publish a book.
So, remember to proofread your book before you send it in for publication and don’t forget to let us know how you proofread and what your strategies are for staying focused!