I will be the first to admit that this is true, “Once an English teacher, always an English teacher,” regardless of how far from the classroom your career may take you. As a result of preaching the importance of proofreading to my students for so many years, I diligently practice what I preached to them as I write blog articles.
My philosophy is that the first draft of anything ever written by any writer is never as good as the final version that has been proofread, edited, proofread, revised and proofread again! The same is true for bloggers – you should never risk publishing a blog post that you have not proofread carefully.
When you blog, one of your goals should be to provide your readers with quality content that offers something of value. Most bloggers want to gain the respect of their audience so they will return to read future blog posts.
One of the quickest ways to lose your credibility is to post articles that do not appear professional, and (not just because of my English-teaching background) blog posts with glaring grammatical errors are not professional!
How to Proofread
There are many ways to successfully proofread your writing. Here are a few of my favorites:
Have someone else proofread your writing. Sometimes the longer we work on a piece of writing, the more difficult it becomes to spot typos and other mistakes.
Read it out loud. You will be amazed at how much you can improve your writing by hearing it for yourself.
Identify areas of weakness. If you’re inclined to make a particular error frequently, read through your work, looking only for that error.
Use spell checker. This is a great tool, but you should never accept every suggestion at face value! It’s not 100% accurate. You have to evaluate the suggestions made by your spell check tool. If you’re unsure, do a little more research to find the right answer.
Let it get cold. After proofreading your final draft, walk away from it for a while. Go back to it after a break and read it again. Sometimes this can make all the difference in a better final product.
Whatever method works best for you in proofreading your work, before you hit the “publish” button just make sure you incorporate the practice of proofreading very carefully. You and your audience will be glad you took the extra time to present your information in a professional manner.
Do you have methods of proofreading that have worked well for you? Leave us a comment and share your ideas!