Every writer on CompletelyNovel has the option to order proof copies of their work at cost price so that they can thoroughly check their book before it goes public. We’re seeing many of our authors do this and it’s something we are really keen to encourage!
If you are self-publishing then proofreading your manuscript is a really challenging task and you’ll kick yourself if you find a mistake after you have told everyone about the book.
No matter how many times you have read through your work it’s amazing how often errors can sneak through to the final stages. The problem is that you are so familiar with the text that you see what you think you have written rather than what you actually wrote. For this reason, at the very least it’s good to ask a few friends to help you proofread.
Don’t forget to carefully proofread the cover, copyright and title pages as well as any indices, tables of contents and dedications. We have noticed that mistakes in these areas happen surprisingly often!
So, short of hiring a professional proofreader, what else can you do to make sure that your book is as close to perfect as you can possibly make it?
HERE ARE 10 TIPS FOR PROOFREADING YOUR BOOK:
Put your writing aside for a while. This allows you to see things with fresh eyes that are more likely to spot errors.
Look at your weaknesses. Do you regularly misspell or repeat words? Do you make particular grammar or punctuation errors? If you are aware of these weaknesses you can take extra care to search or spot them.
Read your work out loud. If you read aloud, your ear might catch errors that your eye may have missed. You could also use text-to-speech software.
Try proofreading backwards! To spot typographical errors, read your work from the end to the beginning, either word by word, sentence by sentence or paragraph by paragraph. This disconnects your mind from the content and helps you focus on the text. Particularly useful for checking the cover.