Everyone should really proof-read their work . . . but I don’t. Proofreading is very very important, something everyone knows by now. Have you ever read a book and come across a typo, grammatical error, or something small (or big) that’s bothered you? I know I have, and it’s probably very hypocritical to say that typos an un-proofread work bothers me, even when I don’t to it myself, but I can’t help it! So, why don’t I proofread. Here are a few of my main reasons, and also my resolution to proofread before I upload things — especially blog posts.
It takes time. Okay, so perhaps I’m kind of lazy here, but proofreading takes up quite a bit of time, even though it’s a necessary thing to do. And I, personally dislike reading over my own writing. (I never read through my own work until I reach the third/fourth draft when I’ve sorted out the plot, and I’m down to the nitty-gritty grammar and wording stuff. I love that stuff. Just not reading it.)
I find it hard to pick up my own errors. Anyone else like this? Sometimes when I proofread, I don’t pick up errors that are there. Yet, if I’m critiquing someone else’s novel, I can pick up their errors find. I don’t really know why, either. Perhaps it is because I am so used to my own writing style that it all just kind of blends in together. Either way, that’s another reason why I’d rather not proofread.
Why bother proofreading when that scene might not be in the next draft? I am notorious for cutting and adding things — then adding the things I’ve cut, and cutting the pieces I’ve added. My question is this: what is the point of proofreading if that portion of writing won’t even be present next draft? This is why I save all my proofreading for later later later drafts, when the plot is done, and I only have to fix up sentence structure, description, and grammar/punctuation. Otherwise, I only see it as a waste of time.
I post my work online for feedback/critiques, so perhaps I should proofread. And I do to some degree; if there are glaringly obvious, I will edit them out . . . but otherwise I won’t bother.
So what about you? How often/thoroughly to you proofread? Should I be doing it more often? Let me know in the comments!