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5 Tips to Improve Your Proofreading Skills

18 October 2019

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Proofreading is an essential element of finalising any piece of work that you want to publish.

Understandably, though, many people tend to shudder at the thought of sifting through hundreds of pages of text looking for errors – particularly when it’s their own work.

Here are 5 ways you can improve your proofreading skills for your next book.

1. Use grammar software

It doesn’t hurt to research spelling, punctuation or any other grammatical issue you’re unsure of when writing a book.

Software like Grammarly can work wonders and even spot the grammatical mistakes you may have missed (we all do it).

It’s a good way to double-check you’re using the right words in the right context, and will improve your writing skills for the future.

2. Take breaks from the screen

You can improve your proofreading skills by taking regular, structured breaks from the computer screen to keep yourself focused.

Simple study methods such as the ‘tomato timer’ (often known as the Pomodoro Technique) will help maximise your concentration levels, and ensure that you do a thorough proofread and spot those hidden mistakes!

This will not only improve your skills but keep you motivated and less overwhelmed by the task in hand, too.

3. Change the font of the text

Sometimes, it doesn’t matter how many times we’ve read something, we always seem to spot a new mistake in every proofread. Temporarily changing the font in our word processor can do wonders when it comes to improving your proofreading skills.

By changing the font into something your eyes are not used to, you might begin to notice those tiny mistakes as you skim through your prose during a second proofread.

4. Correct minor errors as you go

The final proofread for your book should focus on the tiny errors that you didn’t notice at first glance.

Make your job less complicated and tedious towards the end by correcting the minor, more visible errors as you go.

If you type out a couple of sentences and the red squiggly error lines appear, correct them as soon as you can, to help save time later. This will also ensure that any major and obvious spelling issues are not left behind when sending your work to the printers.

5. Proofreading services

Proofreading isn’t for everyone. If you’d rather take the pressure off, you can pay for a literary professional to do all the hard work for you!

At New Generation Publishing, we offer a proofreading service that starts at just £3.00 per every 500 words of your manuscript, which is excellent value if you just want the job done and your work to be sent to the printers without any extra stress! Find out more here.

Wrapping up

Mistakes are easily made in a word processor, and that’s precisely why proofreading is so important, whether you’re a novice or an expert when it comes to writing professionally.

And, if you’re still not convinced, contact us today to discover our proofreading packages. We’ll help take any unnecessary stress away from you and your pursuit of self-publishing success.

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