Free Proofreading for English errors!

I am a (former, unfortunately!) UK teacher with LOTS of time to read, but not a lot of money, so I decided to offer free proof reading in exchange for free reading material! I have met a marvellous group of friends that way, and so now I sometimes review and promote their books here, too! email me and I will get in touch privately. Or check out my Reviews

Thursday, 25 July 2013

First Full Proofreading Finished!

I am SO (what is a mature superlative for *squeeee!*?)!

I finished my first proofreading job, for Kade Boehme, who was doing a reissue of Wide Awake (link is to old version - wait for the new one, with the new *soppy hugs and drools* cover - see Kade's blog) and look at the feedback I got:

You were a tremendous help and I couldn't have pulled this off without you :) Your comments were  ... [very] helpful. I really appreciated you keeping up with everything as you went. I ended up deferring to you on most all of them so kudos. Your work was on par with the editor I work with at the publishing house (only you ... have a more personal relationship with the book [as a fan])

Anyways... so ... [w]here it says "Copyright Kade Boehme. Cover by LC Chase" i threw in a "Proofed by AnonymousBlogger" with a link to your blog ;) Again, anything I can do to get you some recognition/credit for your fab work. You're a lifesaver. I've got something I may be tossing your way in the next couple wks ... It's a smaller project ... and much more in the way of a quick rom-com(ish) novella. 

<3 kade

Yippee! *all that jumping and bouncing I should be too old to do anymore!*

Of course, Kade made it easy by writing a story I really enjoyed in a style that was well-written and complemented mine (I am 100% NOT journalistic in my own prose, so Kade's natural immediate, rather breathless first-person style was a brilliant match!)

So, what did I learn from this?

1) I CAN do a good job of this ... all that marking of Statistics A level papers got me in good training for noticing the 'Quality of Written Communication' criteria (UK Exam Politics Speak *sigh*)
2) I can pick up the tone of an author's work and work within it, in a way that enhances the reader's experience without upsetting the author. (Based on a not completely random sample size of 1, this may not be a fully convincing generalisation, of course!)
3) It takes a LOT longer to proof read carefully for everything, like inconsistent tenses, 'Dragon Oopsie's' like 'flew the coup coop' (UK Dragon would not make that mistake, cos over here we use a more Francophonic pronunciation for 'coup'!), and to make sure I am not accidentally correcting something into UK instead of US English (eg 'give in to' in the US - and apparently in OZ, too - is 'give into' - the research into comparative etymologies is great fun!)
4) I would still spot the really glaring errors if I were working faster, but working in depth requires shorter bursts, or A LOT of reading over and over again, to make sure I don't miss something (I only spotted 'took a loud load off his mind' on a final runthrough, because it came at the end of a section that I should have left and come back to fresh the first time!)
5) The editors and proofreaders I temped with once upon a (long) time ago were every bit as smart as I took them for at the time ... this is a job I would have REALLY ENJOYED back when I was well enough to do it for pay!
6) Format worries were a non-issue ... whatever format a writer sends me, I have appropriate software to make changes and attach comments to explain my thinking clearly, left over from making Maths resources and doing web design!

So ... come on, then, Nate, Sage and C R: bring it on ... I am on a roll and ready for you to do your worst best(!)  Just, don't expect FAST, cos I'm still the same stickler for accuracy over speed that I was as a teacher.  This means, however, that YOU guys can concentrate on speed and leave the nit picking to me - for free!

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Teaching is a stressful business, with people scrutinising your every word and action. This is my chance to unwind / rant anonymously without recriminations!