An introduction to proofreading

You could call me fussy. You could even refer to me as an obsessive compulsive. But I have an annoying habit of spotting mistakes in text.

Only five minutes ago I was given a professionally printed wall planner to put up in the office. I’d say within about three seconds of opening it up I noticed that ‘library’ was spelt without the first ‘r’.

You see, things like this are not really annoying to me (unless I’d printed the wall planner), but they are pretty frustrating for the poor people who’ve spent lots of effort putting them together.

This happens a lot. Facebook spelt with three ‘o’s’ on a brochure, opportunities spelt with three ‘p’s’, ironically on a poster about school education, all unfortunately spotted after they’ve been binded and gloss laminated.

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The ‘gift’ of proofreading

So, recognising I had this ‘gift’ (or more accurately, ‘curse’) it made sense to become a self-employed professional proofreader. Thus, Chris Gorman Proofreading Service was born in July of this year.

An obligatory website was duly set up – (if you spot any spelling mistakes I may have to kill you) – and following a little Adwords spend I have a slowly developing network of happy customers.

And one of these happy customers, Jamie Marsden – an expert in SEO – tweaked my website so it’s fit-for-purpose and hopefully on one fine day someday soon it’ll achieve the Holy Grail…a Google ranking.

In little over 200 words, that’s where I’m at. So, what next? Well, this is the first of many blogs that will offer good, honest advice on spelling, grammar and the little irritating things that lots of people struggle with.

Not everyone can spell (or dance…)

Because not everyone can be good at this sort of thing – I know people who are brilliant accountants, scientists, sportsmen and women but wouldn’t know which side of the ‘s’ to put an apostrophe if their life depended on it. Sure, I’m pretty good at it but then if you asked me to, for example, take to the dance-floor and bust out some moves, an uncomfortable knee-jerk here and clumsy shuffle there would convince you that it isn’t what I’ve been put on this earth to do.

It’s acceptable that, as an individual, you’re prone to the odd grammatical error here and there – however if you’re making such mistakes on behalf of a company seeking to convey a professional image to its customer base then sorry, there really is no excuse.

Particularly when there are people like me, all too happy to have a read.

Check back soon for my first ‘proper’ blog.

Chris G

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