I do quite a bit of proofreading/editing for other writers. I smile when someone says, “I appreciate your eagle eye.”
Actually, I am visually impaired and use a screen reading program to read out loud to me.
I also read braille, and I feel this is probably similar to reading print silently. Easy to skim over errors, to read what we expect to see.
Mantle Rock Publishing asks authors to read their manuscript out loud as a final edit. I think this is excellent advice for all writers. Either read your writing out loud, or use an out-loud, speech program to read it to you.
Here are some of the things I believe I find more easily by listening to a document.
Inflection from missing, misplaced or extra punctuation.
Similar words which sound noticeably different—dosed and dozed, as and at, it and if, no and now.
Omitted words in a sentence.
Missing or extra parts of words, like “file” instead of filed, “walked” instead of walk, lock instead of locks.
Small missing or extra words, such as “of” and “to.”
Wrong words, such as the name Anders instead of Andrews.
Repeated words or parts of sentences too close together.
Of course, listening to a document does not guarantee perfect proofreading. However, I would advise all writers to use this excellent tool.
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