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Proofreading

Editing deals with the overall structure and content of your writing. Proofreading gets more nitpicky, looking at spelling, grammar, and punctuation mistakes, as well as typos. To make sure that you don’t introduce any new errors, always proofread after editing.

Typos and Spelling

Always use a spell checker while writing, but don’t rely on it. Correct any spelling mistakes that your spell checker finds, and then read your post backwards or out loud to spot any more mistakes. Spell checkers improve constantly, but they aren’t perfect, especially with homophones. Be particularly careful that you’ve spelled commonly confused words correctly.

Grammar and Punctuation

Grammar checkers aren’t as sophisticated as spell checkers yet; they miss many mistakes and  catch “mistakes” that aren’t real. Use them, but with caution!

Taking the Crowd Content University grammar and punctuation lessons is your best bet for spotting grammar and punctuation mistakes. Pay special attention to dangling modifiers, subject-verb agreement, subject-pronoun agreement, and run-on sentences.

Consistency

Consistency checkers don’t exist yet, so you’re on your own for this one. Make sure that you stick to consistent spelling and punctuation choices throughout your copy.

In this lesson, I wrote “spell checker”, so I want to make sure that I don’t have “spellchecker” as well. Similarly, in the previous sentence, I put the comma outside of the quotation marks, following British style.

Any more comma-quotation mark pairs that I use must follow the same format.

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