My job entails that I write a lot. From crafting social media posts seen by thousands to writing for our widely circulated alumni magazine to penning a monthly column for our staff newsletter, I get my writing out in front of people. Luckily for me, if I just step out of my office I have two editors down the hall at my disposal who are more than happy to turn my work upside down and mark it up in red. Having JoAnna and Doug as a safety net for my copy is very re-assuring. I can jot down my thoughts freely knowing that it will make as much sense to the readers as it did to me before I turned it over to the professionals.
When I sit at home during the evening and write for Don’t Blink, I don’t have this luxury. I am my own proofreader, editor, and publisher…kind of a scary thing. While I go to great lengths to re-read and catch mistakes I make, I don’t always spot them all. Additionally, I am prone to leave errors in my posts that I didn’t even know were errors to begin with. But because I have written my whole life and because I read a lot, I still believe I have a slightly better eye for catching blunders than the status quo. By no means does this mean I am perfect.
Two people who constantly remind me of this fact are my sister and brother. Miranda, 31, and Glen, 25, message me for two reasons: either to send photos of the baby/cat or to make fun of me for making grammar and/or spelling mistakes in my blog. Although my brother won’t even admit to reading Don’t Blink, somehow he knows the moment a mistake is made and informs me immediately. My sister will go through five blog posts and 4,000 words until she finds something that she can call me out on at which time she will send out a text, making sure to include Glen.
While I do welcome corrections, I prefer to have them pointed out in a constructive way. I think sometimes my siblings enjoy rubbing it in a tad. They like to play with my perfectionist personality and the last thing they would ever want is to let my head get too big.
While in college I had a professor for several courses who would give us an extra point on his exams if we found a spelling/grammar error on the test. I thought about offering my readers an incentive for finding mistakes in my writing but I thought better of it. I know I make errors and I am afraid of the influx of e-mails and comments I would receive, not to mention my phone blowing up with texts from my brother and sister.
My writing is not perfect but I think for the most part it is readable. While obviously my brother doesn’t want to be my personal editor, maybe someone out there does. Would an occasional shout out on my Thursday Rundown blog post work for payment? Don’t Blink.