The One Proofreading Tip Every Writer Should Know
I learned a fantastic proofreading tip, and it’s really made all the difference.
I read everything backwards now, from client work to erotica to my Medium articles.
I’ve always struggled with proofreading. I miss typos and repeated words words even with multiple spelling and grammar programs in use. It’s a nightmare, honestly.
I got tired of doing all that. But I also got tired of sending articles to clients or rereading published articles and finding issues in them. I’ve tried slowing down, doing brain training with proofreading exercises, changing the font, and more. Nope.
None of it worked.
I tried taking long breaks between writing and editing something. I tried having text to speech software to read my work back to me.
You’d think that after being a professional writer for 22 years and an editor for 15 I’d have gotten this down by now. I mean, I never miss errors in other peoples’ work!
Alas, that was just a dream that never came true.
I’ve always wanted to be better at spotting my mistakes. It’s something I’ve been working on for literally decades.
Anyway, that doesn’t matter now. I’ve got it down. Reading everything backwards has improved everything a ton. Well, when I can be bothered to do it. I don’t do it as often as I should with my own work, which sucks, because it often contains a fuckton of typos or other forms of fuck-up if it’s on paper.
It doesn’t help that now I’m blind in one eye.
I guess I just rush things too much if it’s my own because I want to get it done and move on to my other projects. It leads to errors.
Rushing a little is fine, but rushing a lot is only going to lead to errors upon errors upon errors.
I should really quit rushing.
Anyway, reading backwards is fantastic, and I recommend that everyone do it. Especially if you have a demanding workload and have to rush through your work.
If you master the art of reading your stuff backwards you can even do something ambitious and fun with it and add hidden messages to your articles. That last thing is probably pointless, but whatever. It’s fun to screw around every once in a while and see what crap you can come out with.
It’d be interesting to see if you can make it work.
So, yes. I learned a new proofreading trick, and I feel like an idiot for not discovering it sooner. Oh well. If you struggle with proofreading, then try out this trick.
You can spend hours googling and reading proofreading tips and tricks, but at the end of the day, they won’t all work for everyone. Sometimes only one will work for you, and that’s fine. Wear that tip or trick with pride and use it in all of your work.
The internet is a fantastic place for tips and tricks when it comes down to it.
I’m quite proud of how well this trick has worked for me, which is why I can’t shut up about it. And of course, I love the secret things I can do with it.
I feel like I’ve unlocked a hidden treasure chest now that I’ve learned all I have to do is read things backwards to catch all the errors and everything else within.
Do me a favour. Read this article backwards and see what you can catch. Don’t go line by line or word for word. Read it paragraph by paragraph.
Is this article particularly impressive or important? No. Was it fun to write? Yes. Was it difficult? Meh, only some lines. It’s a little choppy, but let’s go with it. It’s readable either way.
The only thing reading stuff backwards can’t do is help you enhance flow and readability, unfortunately. But it can help you catch all those pesky errors that just won’t go away, and that’s what I aim to share with you in this article.