How to Become a Professional Proofreader

Even the best writers make mistakes. Therefore, it is common to see writers posting employment ads seeking a proofreader. Proofreaders provide an invaluable service to many professions. For this matter, many people are exploring the option of becoming a professional proofreader. Although proofreading seems easy, this sort of job does entail preparation. If your client is not happy with the proofreading job, he or she will find another person for the job. Here are a few tips to helping you become a good proofreader.

Start Early – It helps to have an enjoyment or love of English, writing, or literature. Sadly, some people choose a career in proofreading because it looks like easy money. However, writers and professionals who seek proofreading services are not looking for someone to quickly scan a manuscript and return it with errors. Rather, they want a skilled person, who is sincerely interested in finding many mistakes. For this matter, begin brushing up on your grammar and writing skills early. If possible, take additional writing courses in high school or college. Furthermore, you may consider buying books on grammar and writing styles.

Work for a Newspaper – The best way to gain experience in proofreading is applying for a job with a local newspaper or college paper. Submit resume informing the company of your desire to become a proofreader. If you have little or no experience, inquire about a mentoring program or internship. This way, you can work side-by-side with a professional proofreader or editor and receive hands on training.

Apply for Per Diem Employment – Another tactic for getting your foot in the door as a proofreader involves applying for jobs per diem. This essentially means applying for a non-paying job. You can solicit your services to high school students, college students, local employers, other writers, etc.

Take Proofreading Courses – Although many colleges do not offer proofreading courses, you may be able to locate a course through a private institution. Browse online or search for proofreading classes. Online courses are ideal because they offer flexible learning.

Apply with a Proofreading Service – Until you are able to build up a cliental, consider applying for employment with an online proofreading service. Before applications are approved, potential employees must complete a series of proofreading tests, which generally evaluate skills in grammar, reading, and sentence structure. If you pass the test, this could open the door for a multitude of proofreading opportunities.

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