Proofreading tips

Proofreading test

The following made-up quote contains ten small imperfections in terms of grammar, punctuation, style or consistency. Can you spot all ten?

“From an early stage in my career, while still a research assistant in Leicester Polytechnic’s life sciences department, I realized I had a keener eye than other people for mistakes in written work. In those days, articles were drafted in pen or pencil and handed over for typing. Some of the Department’s secretaries asked me why the articles they typed for me always came back with corrections, when everyone else seemed to be perfectly happy with their work.”
“The ability to see written works flaws has been a bit of a curse. I did consider whether I should ignore mistakes to keep the peace: or perhaps mark-up only a percentage of them. For my colleagues, wherever I have worked, finding a typo in one of my messages has always been a great cause for celebration.
”Although I was absolutely confident that no error – in spelling, grammar or punctuation – would escape me, I realised as the years passed that there were far more style rules, conventions and questions of choice than had ever been taught at school. Some of them have rarely, if ever, been written down for reference. I investigated each issue and logged my conclusions, mentally, for use in future adjudications. This has been a continuing quest, in the light of constantly-changing ‘rules’ and fashions”.

Contact: Mark Nicholson Copywriting




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