Error-free writing keeps message clear

Written works, such as news releases, newsletters, webpages and PowerPoint presentations, reflect not only your reputation as a professional, but the reputation of the organization as well. Error-free writing is as easy as using your software's spelling and grammar check and taking a few minutes to proofread your work.

Most errors in written work are made unconsciously:

  1. Faulty information from the kinesthetic memory. If you have always misspelled a word such as "accommodate" unthinkingly, you are likely to misspell it again.

  1. Split second of inattention. The mind works far faster than the pen or keyboard.

Steps to error-free writing

Read the page rapidly the first time to assess its overall impact.

Read deliberately:

  • One line at a time 
  • From the bottom up
  • Line-by-line, using a ruler to focus.

Double check first for errors you frequently make.

Re-read your writing an hour or a day later.

Read out loud You are forced to slow down, and you hear and see what you are reading.

Cultivate a healthy sense of doubt. If in doubt, check it out; never assume.

Let others read your work to catch mistakes and determine clarity. Remember, it is twice as hard to detect mistakes in your own work as in someone else's writing.