It shouldn't happen.
But it does.
It doesn't seem to matter how much I edit my articles, I can look at them again months later and still find typos. In one lengthy one, I reread this morning, there were so many, I was starting to wonder if Ghost reverted my site to a previous version during one of its backups.
I don't know if that's the case or if it was just me. I just honestly don't know. I'll need to shoot off an email to find out. I'm betting it was just me, but I'm dreading having to go back through my entire site just to be sure.
It's time consuming. And one more thing I need to add to the "to-do" list.
Options for making sure you edit properly:
- Get Grammarly. I don't have a subscription and I don't have this software. It would probably help though.
- Get a second pair of eyes. If you don't have someone who will do this for you for free, you'll need to hire someone.
- Let the content sit for more than two (maybe three) rounds of editing. What that means is that you write things up (like this) and then you let it sit for a good few days or a week and then edit it again. Then you let it sit and edit it some more. And maybe, just for good measure, you do that a third time. NOT publish it right away (like I'm about to do).
- Be awake and "fresh" when you edit. Editing on lack of sleep doesn't work, anymore than properly trimming your eyebrows with an electric trimmer does when you're zombified. Trust me. I'm down 1/4 of one of my eyebrows. I laughed rather than cried over it and repeatedly told myself those that love me for me, will only temporarily laugh at me, but will still love me.
Will your readers or prospective employers still want to work with you when they see your posts littered with simple mistakes that could have been caught?
The stakes are greater when you rely on your work to put food on the table and a roof over your head that doesn't leak.
But hey, no pressure.
Editing well is a mark of craftsmanship as a writer.
Even as an amateur or a beginner, even if the plot, tone, and voice all SUCK – you should at least make sure you edit well. There's just no excuse for this in my book.
I grew up learning in school that you:
- form complete sentences,
- you break up run-on sentences,
- capitalize properly, and
- use punctuation.
That's why I'm so hard on myself about it.
But, it's like killing the clutch in a manual transmission. It doesn't matter how long you've been driving, it's still going to happen.
I try to fix my typos on my site, and in my work in general, when I find them. Doesn't mean I don't feel bad when I do find them. It screams, "unprofessional," "amateur," and "lazy."
I care about my writing, whether it's for myself or an employer. I'm not someone who's just rapidly texting it all out and believes that writing in all lower caps for the entire set of sentences is acceptable because I'm in a hurry, have a C-something title in my job description and I'm communicating to the employees on Slack (I dare you to say something!), or am fresh out of college, and feel like you should accept my correspondence because "I also deserve a chance."
That kind of behavior is just flat out sloppy and a personal pet peeve of mind. As a writer, it's not acceptable. It's isn't. It never has been.
I hate not finding all my typos. To my readers - I'm sorry. They're not intentional. At all. I do edit and I try to make sure it's my "best" before I publish or send it off.
But I'll do my best to do better. I know you deserve that.