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5 Tips For Catching Errors In Your Writing
Imagine receiving boxes of books from the printer or publisher only to discover a glaring typo. After countless hours of editing, revising, and proofing, how did it get by?
No matter what editing procedures you undertake, mistakes can happen. So how do you prevent errors before they wind up in your book? Read on...
1 - Employ an editing service.
The most common mistakes are minor, for example incorrect word use (their, they're, there) and simple misspellings.
2 - Get a second (and third) set of eyes.
Even if you don't wish to pay a professional, anyone who reviews your document will find mistakes you invariably miss. It is a function of the brain called "cerbrainiumitis." Okay, okay, that term is made-up -- but the truth is, you're much more familiar with your manuscript than anyone else, and as a result, apt to miss obvious mistakes simply because your eyes glaze over them.
3 - Read your manuscript backwards.
Reading material backwards is the antidote to "cerbrainiumitis" because a critical view of the English language cannot be corrupted by the flowing exposition you have massaged into sparkling prose. When you read your manuscript backwards, your book becomes just a collection of words, and those mistakes literally jump off the page.
4 - Read your manuscript out loud.
When you are forced to say the words out loud, your brain is forced to slow down and concentrate on the material. Bonus - you may discover stumbling blocks like awkward sentence structures and choppy dialogue.
5 - Use the right kind of publisher.
What do you do when that 5,000 print run costs $10,000 and features a grave error that cannot be dismissed? Your best recourse upon discovering an error is typically a sticker and a sense of humor. But an on-demand publisher that allows you to revise your book after publication (for a reasonable fee) means you are never stuck with your blunders.
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