Another Set Of Eyes

eyesLast week was really “eye-opening” for me. As has turned into my usual style, I wrote a blog post late one night, proofread it, and set it up to be published the next morning. I know I have mentioned many times on this blog that it is easiest to draft something, walk away from it, and come back to proofread it. But that’s not what I did. I drafted, reviewed, and set it up to post–all in the span of a couple of hours with no break.

The next morning a good friend messaged me with an error she had found in the article. I fixed that on my cell phone and assumed all was good. And then another friend posted on my Facebook page link to the article for all the world to see that there were errors. I was devastated. But she was right. There were other errors–including a glaring one in the title that I think happened when I was using my phone to fix the first one. A day later she apologized profusely for posting that comment publicly and told me about the error she had seen.

Obviously, another set of eyes proofreading your work can be valuable. Or at least taking a break from it and coming back to proofread it can help. I know that, I preach that, and I ignored it. The result was sloppy work product, a damaged reputation (at least in my mind), and frustration. Was it worth it so that I could get an article about proofreading out by my self-imposed deadline? No way. Will I be more careful about drafting articles and going back to proofread them later? You bet. Can we all learn something from my mistake? Absolutely.

Proofreading is hard. It takes time, patience, and focus. You can’t do a good job of it if you are rushed or tired. So slow down, take breaks, work on something else, and come back to it with “fresh” eyes. If you can take a big break and come back to it, it will be easier because your brain isn’t lining up the words it read into the order it already thinks they belong. The work going out should be important enough to take the time to do it right.

Grammar Giggle – What Kind of Potatoes?

I took this picture at a pop-up restaurant near my office. I realize this is a temporary sign, but it is still important that it is correct.

mined potatoes

Grammar Giggle – Our You Sure You Spelled Are Correctly?

My sister took this picture in her work elevator. I take comfort in the fact that someone else knew enough to correct the error. Too bad they didn’t have a red Proof That sharpie!

our

 

Grammar Giggle – Your Not Speaking My Language

A friend sent this one to me. This is the exact opposite of the error usually made with the you/you’re/your choices.

youre

Grammar Giggle – Art’s and Sport’s

This was in a restaurant ad that I found on their homepage. One more time, you don’t make words plural by adding an apostrophe.

Churchill

Grammar Giggle Week – Telsa

Yes, this is from the same local news station. I don’t imagine Elon Musk would be very happy about this one.

telsa2

Grammar Giggle Week – Day 1

Since I will be getting ready for and attending my NALS Conference here in the Phoenix area, this will be Grammar Giggle week! Today’s Grammar Giggle is from my local news station. Since I didn’t care enough about this story to wait for it, I’m not positive that the first word is supposed to be “Is,” but it doesn’t make any sense the way it is here.

biebs2

Grammar Giggle – It’s

This is a very common error I see. The apostrophe here is for a contraction. It’s is a contraction for “It is.” But that doesn’t fit in the restaurant’s advertisement. “Its” is the possessive form of the pronoun “it.”

its