We’ve all seen reviews that say, “This book had a lot of missing words.” Even though the author hired and paid an editor to make sure their work was error free, they still wind up with these types of reviews. Why? Because going through 80,000 words is time consuming and editors have lives and a list of priorities of their own.
NO ONE will care about your work as much as you do.
You’ve spent months with you manuscript, reread it several times, and probably even read it out loud. Isn’t this enough? No, because our eyes see what they expect to see. I’m not going to bore you with the explanation of this. If you’re a writer, you know what I’m talking about. That’s why we have beta readers, in hopes of catching errors we can’t see in our own work. That’s still not enough.
I recommend you try this little trick on something that has been through editors and beta readers, maybe even those works that you’ve already published. You’ll be surprised that you still find errors. The silver lining is that you know they’re there and can now fix them!
Here it is: The SIMPLE secret to Proofreading to really make sure your book is error free.
Save your word document as a PDF file. Open it. Click on View > Read Out Loud > Activate Read Out Loud.
Put on headphones and listen to your story. I go through mine paragraph by paragraph, and even if I’m reading along, my ears will still catch things my eyes miss.
Listen carefully for odd sounding words. Ex: “lose” or “loose,” “decent” or “descent.” I find it also can help decipher if a comma is needed or not.
That’s it. Fix what you need to fix and send it to the publisher.
If you’ve found this helpful or have other suggestions to add, please leave a comment and let me know!