Proofreading is essentially a final quality check to ensure that a text is ready for publication. The aim is to catch any errors that may have been missed at earlier stages. Think of it as a ‘polish’ of your work. The focus will be on consistency of language usage and presentation, along with checking the accuracy of elements such as tables, diagrams, captions and layout. It can also include light restructuring of phrases and sentences to assist in clarity and to remove awkwardness.
Often, the term ‘proofreading’ is used quite loosely to include other kinds of editorial intervention more commonly seen as part of copyediting. Following close discussion with a client to understand expectations, I can include the following in addition to a basic proofread:
- Checking of contents pages, including that headings match and page numbers are accurate
- Standardisation of headings, captions, capitalisation, hyphenation, abbreviation, etc.
- Highlighting areas of repetition
- More substantial rewording or alteration of large blocks of text.
In all cases, I will never attempt to modify or undermine your voice as a writer and all changes will be made with this in mind.
How I Work
I usually work on PDF copy, in which case I use Adobe comment tools for markup. If preferred I can work with a Word document, using track changes to indicate corrections. I am also trained in using British Standards Institution (BSI) symbols for proof correction (BS 5261 Part 2 2005) should you require me to work on paper.
Before I start, I will always discuss your specific requirements and what work a particular document will require. This enables me to deliver a quote that is both accurate and cost-effective.
Pricing is dependent on the nature of the work required, but I always endeavor to be cost-effective and transparent. I can provide a quote once I know your requirements. Discussing these will allow me to understand how much intervention the text will require and any specific work to be undertaken.
A Note for Students
When undertaking work on dissertations and theses, it is of paramount importance that the ethical rules and regulations of your institution are adhered to. As such, I will only undertake a basic proofread or any other work which your institution accepts as not contravening its rules. Please contact me to discuss this further.