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It makes sense to start with proofreading definition: it is an inherent stage of the writing process, which requires much knowledge, as well as patience. Many ask “What is proofreading?” as they often muddle themselves around the variety of editorial terms. In a nutshell, this term specifies the process that follows editing and is all about reviewing the final version of any piece to ensure that there is nothing left to correct. Even though proofreading is now often done electronically, there are still cases when printed pieces are proofread.
Although it is the last stage of editing, it doesn’t mean that it is less important. Without it, no one can be sure that a particular piece is free of any slips and is ready to be published or submitted. Professional proofreaders take their jobs seriously and thus prefer to look through texts more than once. This is how they can ascertain themselves that they have done everything as is right and proper.
Reasons to Proofread Your Papers
With no doubt, content is what means the most. Nevertheless, the way your documents are organized and presented impacts the way your recipients judge them. When you are sweating over an interesting, informative, and original content for hours, you surely don’t want any mistakes to distract your recipients from the main point. Therefore, there is no way for you to skip the proofreading process and still be able to create a piece that can impress your readers.
Most people are not willing to spend much time perusing their works and thus hope to find all errors by skimming their texts. But nothing should be done in haste but gripping a flea: cursory reading will not let you detect every last slip, especially after you have been working on your piece for hours.
To end up with a well-polished piece, you have to stick to a plan that will enable you to look for specific types of mistakes systematically. Of course, this will take you a few extra hours but it is well worth the effort. If you know how to check your paper form mistakes effectively, there is no need to care a lot about your first draft having some. Don’t get overwhelmed with thinking about any slips when editing your rough copy; otherwise, you have all chances to end up struggling to concentrate on your content.
Effective Tactics to Use
There are many service providers, for instance, like Vip-Writers.com specializing in different types of proofreading, and you can seek help from them. However, if you got used to doing everything on your own, then it is your call.
Probably, you have already used one of the below-mentioned strategies. But don’t afraid of experimenting by combining different ones to develop a system that works great for you. Just for the record, make it systematic so as you can detect all mistakes in the shortest time possible.
In God we trust, the rest we check.
This tactic can be applied for the texts checked with digital services. Take note that the latter ones usually have limited dictionaries and thus may show correct words as misspelt ones. Moreover, they will not catch a misspelt word that forms a correct one. For instance, for them, “you” and “you’re” are the same.
Grammar checkers, in their turn, can make everything worse. Such programs work in accordance with the limited set of rules. For this very reason, they often fail to find all slips and can even cause more mistakes.
Don’t be in a hurry and read every word carefully.
Read your entire text out loud so as you can hear how your sentences sound together; otherwise, you are very likely to miss lots of slips or make unnecessary corrections.
Check for only one type of mistakes at a time.
By checking for too many things, you can lose your focus and thus decrease the effectiveness of the whole process. It is much easier to look for spelling slips when you are not searching for any sort of grammar ones. It is also worth mentioning that what works for one kind of errors is less effective when catching other kinds.
Check for spelling errors by reading backwards.
Begin with the very last word and go back to the very first one, spelling out each word separately. This is how you can concentrate on spelling exceptionally. By reading backwards entire sentences, you can check your papers for grammar slips. Turning your attention to separate phrases will help you abstract yourself from the content.
Break up your text into separate sentences.
By pressing a return key after every period, you can make your every sentence start with a new line. By doing so, you can check each sentence for mistakes more effectively. When it comes to hard copies, a ruler can do the trick!
Surround yourself with books.
This whole process is not only about finding mistakes that you can recognize but also detecting the new ones. By correcting new slips you can gain some knowledge. Use dictionaries and workbooks nigh at hand to be able to refer to them every time you are stuck.
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