9Don’t Trust the Spell-Checker: Proofreading Made Easier

“I was working on the proof of one of my poemsall the morning, and took out a comma.In the afternoon I put it back again.”

—Oscar Wilde

THE NEED TO PROOFREAD YOUR writing for mechanical correctness has to be one of most stressful, tedious, and unwelcome aspects of the writing process. Yet it’s so essential to the quality of your work. The irony is that all the proofreading in the world cannot guarantee 100-percent correctness. Visit any bookstore, pick up and glance through any volume at random, and you are certain to find an error or two or more. The most prestigious newspapers and magazines will never be free of proofreading errors. Why not? Because as long as proofreading is done by ...

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