7 proofreading steps every writer should follow

Distinct from editing, proofing has its own specific functions that go beyond making sure the words are spelled correctly. Punctuation, fonts, and formatting issues all need attention.

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Proofreading is the last line of defense for quality control in print and online publishing. Be sure to conduct a thorough proofread of all documents before they are printed for distribution and of all Web pages before they go live, using these guidelines.

Before you proof, you must edit. (This post explains the difference between the two processes.) There’s no use expending time and effort to check for minor typographical errors until the editing stage is complete. Review for proper organization, appropriate tone, and grammar, syntax, usage, and style before the document is laid out.

Stakeholders should read the edited version before layout and submit requests for revisions during the editing stage. If anyone other than the editorial staff must see the proof, remind him or her that only minor changes should be made at this point.

1. Use a checklist

Create a list of important things to check for, such as problem areas like agreement of nouns and verbs and of pronouns and antecedents, and number style.

2. Fact-check

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