Okay, so I think I’m funny, Please Proofread You’re Copy huh? But it happens all the time. I do it more than I like to admit. Here’s an example: This appeared in a newspaper headline: “Missippi Literacy Program Shows Improvement.” —  HuffPost.  Or a sign that says, “Please satanize your hands here” – BuzzFeed. Can Satan do that? Here are a few of the most common proofreading mistakes. I’ve made them all. If you find any in this post let me no.

Please Proofread You’re Copy

Homonyms 

A homonym can be a homograph, words spelled the same but pronounced differently such as wind, bass, or lead, or a homophone, words sounding alike but spelled differently such as they’re, there, and their or to, too, two. Using the incorrect homophone is a common mistake to be aware of.

Apostrophes 

Apostrophes replace the missing letters in contractions, for example they’re. They’re also used to show possession with letters and digits. For example, “Ask about the three A’s of our service.” It isn’t necessary to use apostrophes with years or abbreviations.

Commas

Business Insider offers this guide to comma use.

  • Use a comma before any coordinating conjunction (and, but, for, or, nor, so, yet) that links two independent clauses.
  • Use a comma after a dependent clause that starts a sentence.
  • Use commas to offset appositives from the rest of the sentence.
  • Use commas to separate items in a series.

Omitting the third, or Oxford comma, in a series may lead to confusion, for example, “This book is dedicated to my parents, my cat and God.” So, the parents are a cat and God?

Misspelled Words 

It seems that with Spellcheck, there should be no excuse for misspelled words, but that’s not always the case.

“A few years ago, I wrote a letter of apology to a customer whose service appointment had been cancelled by the business I worked for. We rescheduled the service, but I wanted to let the customer know that we were sincerely apologetic for missing the appointment and any inconvenience it might have caused. Except, when I drafted the letter in Microsoft Word, I misspelled inconvenience, and Spellcheck corrected it – almost. I clicked okay to the Spellcheck suggested correction, and then didn’t proofread the letter. So, the snail mail letter that the customer received said, “We are sincerely sorry for any incontinence you may have experienced.” Yep, I said incontinence. Sigh.” — Auto-Incorrectness.

Please Read Carefully 

Before hitting publish or send, double-check spelling, grammar, and structure to confirm you’re sharing what you intended to share. However, don’t be ashamed or alarmed if misstakes still get through. It happens.

How Can I Help You? 

Let me know if I can offer any help or advice. If this post struck a nerve, you should check out my book, How to Stay Ahead of Your Business Blog Forever. The book contains action plans to create a blogging/writing system that works for you.

If you enjoyed this, you might also like, What Makes a Blog Attractive to Readers?

Photo by Siora Photography on Unsplash