proof it!

I have been doing a lot of proofreading lately, and so I decided to compile my very own top five list of proofing tips:

1. Speak out! – Read text out loud, sort of like giving a speech.

2. Walk the line! – Fold over a piece of paper, maybe using a light color to draw the eye, but white works just as well, and proof the piece line by line.

3. Be kind, rewind! – This one comes from my mom, a teacher: start at the bottom of the piece and proof from end to beginning, it works well for spelling.

4. Add it up! – This one is for grants or reports with numerical lists: check your numbers to make sure they add up and all the data is there. I once heard a grant reviewer say the first thing she does is take a calculator to check an application and sometimes those rounded decimals, especially in percentages, need an extra check.

5. Make a friend request! – Get a second, third, fourth set of eyes on the piece to make sure everything looks good. Sometimes I will ask someone from a different department to get a completely fresh review because it is amazing what your eye can miss when you’ve read something 17 times! Other times, usually with design pieces, I will ask different people to look for different things, so one person will do spelling/grammar and another will look for style/spacing.

 

Feel free to add your own tips in the comments section, I would love to learn some new tricks!

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