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8 Signs You’re an Editor

8 Signs You're an Editor

8 Signs You're an EditorIt takes a very specific kind of person to be an editor. Many people who you may think would make great editors—like writers, teachers, or other people who work with language a lot—just don’t have the right combination of personality quirks required to succeed in this career.

Being an editor is a tricky balance between being really good at following rules and being a jerk. If you can identify with more than half the items on the list below, there’s a good chance you’re already an editor. If you identify with this list but are not currently an editor, I think I may see a career change in your near future.

Here are eight signs that you’re an editor:

1. You laugh when other people suggest that you “like” to read, because you “like” to read about as much as you “like” to sleep. These are not “likes” or “wants”—these are needs. Granted, they are needs that often butt heads, like when you stay up until three in the morning because you have to finish the book you’re reading. (Also, you just giggled at the use of the word “heads” after the word “butt” because nothing amuses you more than what appears to be accidental wordplay.)

2. Inconsistency is the bane of your existence. This applies to everything in your life: subject-verb agreement, plurals, shoe size, the enforcement of rules, etc. If it’s inconsistent, it bothers you. And if it bothers you, you will do whatever you can to change it.

3. You’ve texted friends before to alert them to typos in their most recent Facebook statuses, because what kind of friend would you be if you let them leave errors there for all the world to see? Online typos are the electronic equivalent of food on the face or boogers in the nose, and anyone who doesn’t see that is a fool in your well-written and grammatically correct book.

4. You either have self-restraint down to a science when it comes to correcting the grammar of new acquaintances or people in positions of authority, or else you generally don’t make friends very easily.

5. Your friends and family members often complain that you “always have to be right,” but you know that isn’t true. Unlike them, you understand the importance of spreading knowledge and reducing ignorance, which is why you can’t let them go around saying things that simply aren’t correct. You also encourage them to correct you if you’re ever wrong, though, admittedly, you aren’t sure if that’s ever actually happened before.

6. You actually keep track of which major publishers tend to have the most typos in their books, and this seriously affects your buying choices.

7. While other people may engage in heated debates about current events, movies, or music, you always manage to find someone at the party with whom you can battle about the use of the serial comma. Of course, you can never be persuaded to change your opinion on the matter, and neither can the other person, but that’s what makes the debate so simultaneously engaging, engrossing, and enraging.

8. When it comes to grammar, you believe that perfection is attainable. Being called a perfectionist isn’t an insult; on the contrary, it’s the ultimate compliment.

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6 Myths about Being an Editor

6 Myths about Being an Editor

6 Myths about Being an EditorAre you considering a glamorous career in editing? If you are thinking about becoming an editor, you’ve probably come across some pretty crazy misconceptions about what exactly editors do and what we’re like. You may have heard that editors are detailed-obsessed individuals who take great pleasure in knowing more than others do about grammar and punctuation. Well, that’s entirely true. It’s a well-known fact that one cannot be an editor without an inner drive that forces him or her to strive for an unattainable level of perfection. If you spent a good part of your childhood trying to convince your parents that any low marks you achieved in school were, in fact, the end of the world, you’ve probably always been destined to become an editor.

If you’re going to be an editor, you should probably also be aware of the popular myths that surround this magical and mysterious career. Many people believe things about editors that simply aren’t true, and there’s nothing we dislike more than incorrect information being passed off as fact. (Except, maybe, comma splices. We just can’t handle that crap.)

Myth #1: All Editors Do the Same Thing

One common misconception about editors is that we all perform the same job duties. In reality, there are several different kinds of editors, and they all do different things. Two of the most different types of editors are developmental editors and copy editors. Developmental editors help structure the entire project, while copy editors focus more on technical things, like the use of punctuation and adherence to grammar principles. Another type of editor is an acquisitions editor, sometimes known as a commissioning editor. This person is responsible for choosing which manuscripts a publishing house should publish. Depending on the project, all three of these very different types of editors may be involved at some point.

So, depending on your interests and skills, you may be better suited for one type of editing than another. But don’t worry—although we do different jobs, we’re all equally awesome.

Myth #2: Editors Are Evil Destroyers of Dreams

It’s not uncommon for writers to fear editors. Many writers think that editors are out to tear their work to shreds or to change it until it is unrecognizable, but the truth is only bad editors do that. Good editors value good work, and if we feel that something could use improvement, we provide constructive feedback and solid examples of how that improvement could be made. That being said, if something is grammatically incorrect, we will change it—after all, that’s what we’re being paid to do! Sensitive authors and people whose grasp of grammar isn’t nearly as good as they think it is give editors a bad name, but you know what Taylor Swift always says—those haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate. Shake it off. Just shake it off.

Myth #3: Editors Never Make Mistakes

Even the best professionals make mistakes. Just look at Ben Affleck. He broke into the film industry with Good Will Hunting, a brilliant film jam-packed with stellar performances. He went on to make some other good movies, and then there was . . . Gigli. This film has a 2.3/10 rating on imbd.com and a measly 6% on rottentomatoes.com. It’s widely considered to be one of the worst movies ever made. After the abomination that was Gigli, Affleck managed to establish himself as a serious director and a decent actor. So you see, everyone makes mistakes!

Now, I will admit that most editors don’t make mistakes of Gigli proportions. We’re more likely to miss the occasional misused comma or incorrect word choice than to make epic mistakes of the feature film variety. Still, the lesson here remains the same: editors are people, and people make mistakes.

Myth #4: Editors Are Proofreaders

Editing and proofreading, while similar in nature, are not actually the same thing. Yes, both editing and proofreading involve removing errors from a document. However, editors tend to focus more on the big picture, while proofreaders are responsible for making a document error-free. This doesn’t mean that one is more important than the other; instead, it means that one should come before the other.

A document should first be edited, then proofread. These are two different services, and they should be provided by two different people. There’s a reason why editors aren’t called Editoofreaders and proofreaders aren’t called Proofeditors. They aren’t the same thing.

Myth #5: All Editors Are Geeks or Nerds

Okay, so I can see where people might get this one from. Yes, editors are smart and good with language. Yes, we typically do enjoy reading. Yes, we know lots of things that other people don’t know about grammar. But that doesn’t make us all geeks. If anything, we’re definitely geek-chic. Who cares, anyway? Everyone knows that brainy is the new sexy. (All right, fine. Maybe this one isn’t a myth after all. But don’t you act like you didn’t thoroughly enjoy that Sherlock reference.)

Myth #6: Editors Are Becoming Obsolete

Some people think they don’t need editors anymore. Why pay for an editor when word processors like Microsoft Word have built-in spelling and grammar checkers? Here’s why:

“I went too go to the storage.”

According to Microsoft Word, which I’m currently using to write this blog post, that is a perfectly acceptable sentence. Despite the fact that it makes no sense and has three incorrect word choices, it’s A-Okay in Word’s book. People will always need real editors because I didn’t “went too go to the storage”; I wanted to go to the store.

Now that you know a little bit more about what an editor isn’t, wouldn’t you like to know a bit more about what being an editor is all about? Check out some of Inklyo’s resources to see if you have what it takes to become a professional word warrior.

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How to Learn to Proofread

How to Learn to Proofread

It takes a certain personality and skillset to excel in a proofreading job

How to Learn to ProofreadProofreading requires steady nerves and a focused mind. Certain people are predisposed to the job because they’re systematic and unhurried. High-energy people who prefer to focus on the big picture are often less successful as proofreaders. Instead, if the words “systematic” and “unhurried” sound like you—or if you’re willing to follow instructions to the proverbial “t” and are looking for a new career—you’ll find it easy to learn to proofread.

Concentration

Even those who don’t like to focus on one thing at a time have to concentrate acutely on some everyday tasks. For example, when you’re completing a government form you have to concentrate to make sure you fill it out correctly. If you’re able to get through a form without stopping every five minutes to do other things, you can probably learn to proofread. Concentration might not come to you naturally, but by enrolling in a formal proofreading course and practicing, you can easily hone your concentration.

Method

Maybe you’re reluctant to learn a new skill because you currently have no idea how to proofread. Don’t fret. When you learn to proofread, your training course will walk you through tried and true methods that will allow you to complete each task perfectly. If you can’t follow instructions, or if you’re always thinking of new ways to do things, you probably won’t learn to proofread quickly. But, if grammar, spelling, and style have always been your fortes, you’ll likely learn to proofread in no time.

Time management

When you first learn to proofread, you’ll be taught how best to manage your schedule so you don’t have to constantly put one task on hold to complete another. You might find yourself working from home as an independent proofreader, so look for a course that will teach you how to reserve hours each day for your job and how to complete your job efficiently.

Attitude

Although personality is a fixed trait, attitude can be learned. Try to practice consistency and methodical, clear thinking as you learn to proofread. You should avoid jumping ahead and second-guessing yourself. Learn to trust only what you see on the page, but also be wary that your eyes aren’t playing tricks on you. When you learn to proofread properly, you learn all sorts of hacks that other professional proofreaders have been using for years.

Suggestions

Don’t scrimp on paying for a good course if you want to learn to proofread properly. You might think you can save money by buying a book or sourcing a cut-rate course from outside the English-speaking world, but resist these temptations. ProofreadingCamp is a comprehensive proofreading course that was created by Scribendi.com, one of the world’s most successful and trusted online editing and proofreading services. With lessons that will teach you the standard practices that Scribendi.com’s staff of professional proofreaders use daily, this is decidedly one of the best, most up-to-date proofreading courses available.

Once you plunk down your hard-earned cash for a reputable course like ProofreadingCamp, don’t waste the opportunity; actually learn to proofread. Follow the course material to the letter, and acquire the skills and methods you’ll need to become a successful proofreader.

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What Can Inklyo’s Copywriting Resources Do For You?

Copywriting ResourcesWhat is the most important part of a business’s website? Is it the product descriptions? The pictures? The navigation system? No, the most essential part of any website is its killer content. The content is what builds up a website’s search engine ranking, and it’s what keeps customers coming back for more. That’s why it’s more important than ever to make sure that your content shines.

But what if you’re not the best writer or think your writing could be improved? Having to create all this content can be overwhelming.

Don’t fret! With a willingness to learn and the right resources, you can easily improve your content writing skills and develop the knowledge and habits to consistently produce stellar content for your blog or website. Check out the list below to learn some copywriting tips that will form the basis of your copywriting education. Then, develop your practical writing skills with Inklyo’s writing courses and ebooks.

1. Copywriters are, first and foremost, writers.

Businesses want their website copy to be persuasive and earn the trust of potential customers. The best way to do this, however, is not to stuff the website with dry company information or grandiose but empty promises. Producing engaging copy is no different than producing an engaging novel: it must be grounded in a solid understanding of grammar, language, and storytelling.

If a website’s content is poorly written—either filled with typos or filled with cheesy slogans—it says something about the company that produced it. Before you write your website’s copy, make sure you thoroughly edit your work and employ the art of telling a story.

2. Copywriters write for the reader.

As a copywriter, try to put yourself in customers’ shoes. Put yourself into the minds of readers to understand how to speak to them. If your company has developed buyer personas, reviewing these is a great way to create a mindset that will allow you to write something they will want to read. In addition to enticing potential clients to read the content, once you know whom you are writing for, you can help the reader to look at things from a particular perspective. For instance, if you want to draw attention to the benefits of a particular product, gear the article toward the reader by uniting the problems the reader is likely experiencing with the solutions offered by your product.

3. Copywriters write for the business.

In addition to aligning themselves with readers, copywriters should align themselves with their company’s goals. By maintaining good communication with employers and other team members, all parties know what will be included in the copy to produce the desired outcome. This way, the content produced by you, the copywriter, will be in tune with the specific end goals of the business. If you know the end goals, you can clearly convey your company’s message to the public.

4. Copywriters write using search engine optimization.

The Internet categorizes information based on relevance. Search engines will pull up articles that fit certain keywords based on criteria such as the articles’ content, metadata, and posting date. Copywriters need to be aware of what keywords and phrases to include to ensure that the content is optimized and can be found by the readers who are looking for it. This way, the content is brought up in searches more often and will increase the visibility of your site. You should also make sure that the content is not simply stuffed with keywords but incorporates them in a way that sounds natural. This will make the content more enjoyable to read and will help your site avoid penalties from Google.

Conclusion

There’s always something new to learn in the field of copywriting. In addition to having a solid grasp of grammar and being a good writer, copywriters need to stay abreast of new trends and changes in search engine optimization best practices. There is no “finish line” when you’re a copywriter; there’s always a new challenge to overcome or a new skill to learn. This can be daunting, but remember that you don’t have to do it all alone. Check out Inklyo’s blog and other writing resources for help along the way.

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Should I Use a Proofreading Program?

Should I Use a Proofreading Program

The human proofreader vs. the proofreading program

Should I Use a Proofreading ProgramWith all the proofreading software available these days, you may wonder why there are still human proofreaders. For a one-time payment, you can get year-round instant proofreading for all your documents by putting them through your proofreading program. You don’t even need to know how to install the software on your computer; a whole range of online proofreading programs can be accessed online, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. So why bother hiring human proofreaders?

Procedure

Some proofreading programs look like word processing packages. You write your documents in an editing window of the software, and side panels give you assessments and statistics on the spelling and grammar in your text. Another type of proofreading program is one that you add to an existing word processing program, like Microsoft Word or OpenOffice’s Writer. These programs add a tab on the menu bar that enables you to access the program’s proofreading functions.

Online

An online proofreading program may follow one of two different formats. The first requires you to upload a file, which the program will then analyze. It will then either display or email you a report on the document. The second format in the proofreading program contains a text box into which you either type or cut and paste some text. After pressing a button, you receive a proofreading report on the contents of that text.

Cost

Many proofreading program options are available for free, or at least offer a free, simplified version of a more elaborate paid program. Those without heavy proofreading requirements might get by with a free version. There are also a number of freeware proofreading packages you can download and install on your computer. You may not realize it, but you probably already own a free proofreading program. Most word processing programs include a spell-checker that also checks grammar.

Human proofreaders

Given that there are so many convenient and free software options available for proofreading, why would anyone ever hire a human proofreader? Surely, those pursuing proofreading careers might as well pack up and pursue a more in-demand career instead. However, people are still taking proofreading courses and looking for jobs as proofreaders. Why?

Proofreading program reports

The trouble with proofreading programs is that you usually have to be a qualified proofreader to understand the analysis reports they put out. Here’s a common alert from Word’s grammar checker: “Fragment (consider revising).” Revise how? What’s a fragment? You could have a go at fixing the problem by trial and error, but if you don’t know why the sentence is wrong, you probably won’t know how to fix it. All the program will do is tell you what’s wrong and leave you with little advice on how to correct the mistakes.

Stylistic subtleties

Although a proofreading program can highlight spelling and grammar errors, it is unable to understand the subtleties of style. You may want to write a piece for a young readership and use slang to better connect with your audience. Anything to do with fashion, trends, and youth culture requires a fast-changing vocabulary, which a software program can’t help you with. Humor, double meanings, and irony are all lost on spell-checkers. Specialist language in science and engineering are also rarely compatible with a general proofreading program. Although the software option is adequate for many proofreading needs, a human proofreader is still not obsolete.

Textual subtleties

Finally, humans are able to recognize word usage and context in a way that a proofreading program cannot. For instance, if the word “pair” is used instead of “pear” to describe the fruit, a human proofreader is likely to catch the mistake; a proofreading program, however, might see that the word is spelled correctly (after all, “pair” is a real word that would be correct in a different context), but it would not necessarily understand the context well enough to notify you that the wrong word has been used.

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Grammar Errors in Your Favorite Songs

Grammar Errors in Your Favorite

What You Can Learn from These 4 Lyric Mistakes

Grammar Errors in Your Favorite“Music is the universal language of mankind,” according to Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. But does the same logic apply to lyrics? What about lyrics riddled with grammatical errors?

Some people have a hard time listening to grammar errors in songs. These people believe that rules are rules, and that artists should somehow figure out a way to make tricky lines work without using double negatives or bending the rules of verb moods. Well, I say “Phooey” to those people. That’s right, I just used a slang word! You know why? Because I’m speaking in a casual (rather than formal) tone—the main concern is that I adequately convey my meaning.

When it comes to language, there is a time and a place for everything. When you’re writing a casual blog post, you don’t need to be as strict with your language usage as you do when you’re writing a formal paper. When you’re speaking, you don’t need to follow the rules the same way that you do when you’re writing, and when you’re singing a song, you can toss caution to the wind and make your own rules, as long as the result sounds good. It’s true that song lyrics often have very obvious grammatical errors, but what would you rather passionately belt along to “Ain’t no sunshine when she’s gone” or the much more laborious “There is no sunshine when she’s gone”? You could even make the sentence longer: “There is not any sunshine while she is away.” Is that what you want? To make classic songs unsingable? I didn’t think so.

Still, this is a grammar blog, and as such, I have to assume that you’ve come here to learn about grammar rules. So let’s take a look at some examples of grammatical errors in song lyrics and see what lessons we can learn from them.

1. Objective versus Subjective Pronouns

The culprit: Lady Gaga

The songs: “Bad Romance,” “You and I”

In her megahit “Bad Romance,” Gaga sings: “I want your love and/I want your revenge/You and me could write a bad romance.” As I’m sure your grandmother has pointed out to you hundreds of times, this should be “you and I.” Ironically, Gaga makes the opposite error in her other single, which is actually titled “You and I“: “Somethin’, somethin’ about my cool Nebraska guy/Yeah something about, baby, you and I.”

Gaga has misused her pronouns in both of these songs. The pronoun I is used when the I in question is the subject of the sentence, while the pronoun me is used when the me that is referred to is the object of the sentence.

The easiest way to remember when to use I versus when to use me is to remove the other noun or pronoun from the sentence. So, in the case of “Bad Romance,” we would test this by saying “I want your revenge/Me could write a bad romance.” When the lyric is written like this, it becomes clear that the correct pronoun here is I, because I is the subject of the sentence in question. Conversely, for “You and I,” we can test the lyric by saying “Somethin’ about, baby, I.” You would never say “something about I.” This should be “something about me,” because me is the object of the sentence. The lyric should thus be “something about, baby, you and me.”

Why we forgive Gaga: First, we can forgive Gaga because Mother Monster is not the first songwriter to make this mistake. Other artists with songs incorrectly named “You and I” include Stevie Wonder, Barbra Streisand, John Legend, and many more. For most of these songs, I has been chosen over me for the sake of rhyming.

This is also a common error that people make in everyday speech, probably because somewhere down the grammar line someone started the rumor that it’s never correct to say “you and me.” As for the “Bad Romance” error, we’re going to give Gaga some credit and say she purposefully used bad grammar in her lyric about a bad romance. Plus, you know, this line had to fit in with the rest of the song’s lyrics: “Rah-rah-ah-ah-ah/Roma-ro-ma-ma/Ga-ga-oo-la-lah.” Much words. Very lyric.

2. Moody Verbs

Elvis Presley.The culprit: Elvis Presley

The song: “Hound Dog”

“When they said you was high class, well that was just a lie…” And when they said Elvis was a grammar nerd, well, that was clearly just a lie as well. The problem with this lyric is the use of the word was. The word were should be used here instead, but why? Because this sentence calls for the subjunctive mood of the verb to be. The subjunctive mood is used when referring to something that hasn’t happened/isn’t going to happen (like a wish, a desire, or a possible future event), or to something that is not true. In this case, the claims that the “hound dog” was high class were untrue, hence the need for the subjunctive were.

Why we forgive Elvis: Have you ever watched a late-1950s video of Elvis Presley performing “Hound Dog”? Have you seen this man dance? Have you seen the way his legs move as if independent from his body? I’m sure you haven’t, because if you had, you wouldn’t be concerned with such trifles as incorrect verb moods in his lyrics. Come on now, people—priorities!

3. Double Negatives

The culprit: The Rolling Stones

The song: “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction”
What’s wrong with saying “I can’t get no satisfaction“? Nothing, as long as your name is Mick Jagger and you’re singing this classic rock song. The grammatical problem with this lyric is the use of the double negative. If the Stones are not getting “no satisfaction,” does this mean they are indeed getting some satisfaction? This unclear meaning is the reason why double negatives are generally not acceptable in written language, though the intended meaning of these statements is usually clear enough in a colloquial spoken context.

Why we forgive The Rolling Stones: Because saying “I can’t get any satisfaction” just doesn’t have the same punch to it, and because this is widely considered to be one of the greatest songs of all time. Besides that, what fun would rock stars be if they followed all the rules?

4. Lay versus Lie

The culprit: Bob Dylan

The song: “Lay Lady Lay”

In this oft-covered classic, Dylan entreats his lady not to leave. “Lay, lady, lay, lay across my big brass bed,” he croons over and over again. The problem here? Dylan is repeatedly using the wrong word. Technically speaking, the lyrics here should be “Lie, lady, lie, lie across my big brass bed.” Why is this?

The word lay should only be used when a direct object is involved. An easier way to think of this is to remember that you have to be talking about the act of laying something, usually as in laying something down. If Dylan were laying his lady down, or if he was asking her to lay herself down, his lyrics would be correct. On a side note, Bon Jovi clearly knew what’s up here, as evidenced by the lyrics of their song “Bed of Roses”: “I wanna lay you down on a bed of roses.” So, Jon Bon Jovi can lay his lady down on a bed of roses, someone can lay down their arms, or you can lay something on me. But when I’m sleepy, I have to go lie down.

Why we forgive Bob: For one thing, this is a very common error in spoken language. It’s one of those mistakes that do not really change the intended meaning of what a person is trying to say, so it’s generally an acceptable error to make when speaking. The problem that we’re sure Dylan was facing here was the fact that the proper word choice, lie, has more than one meaning. To lie means to recline or rest, yes, but it also means saying something that’s not true. Dylan probably didn’t want people to think that he was inviting a big fat liar to hang out in his big brass bed with him, so he opted to use the wrong word because it actually gave the song a clearer meaning.

Final Thoughts

I’ve used some specific examples for the sake of this article, but in reality, these same errors occur in songs all the time. You can choose to harp incessantly on the artists who make these errors in their music, or you can pull an Adele Dazeem and let it go. If you can’t listen to the magical ballad that is “Let It Go” without criticizing the lyrics, I don’t think I can help you.

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Spelling Tips You Can Learn Through Proofreading Training

Spelling Tips You Can Learn Through Proofreading Training

Must-know tips that proofreading training can give you

Spelling Tips You Can Learn Through Proofreading TrainingWhether you get your proofreading training from a university, a specialized course, or on the job, there are many skills that you should expect to learn. Proofreading training will enable you to check manuscripts efficiently. There are certain common mistakes that you should always check for, and there are some forms of grammar and vocabulary that are specific to particular disciplines, like medicine or engineering. Checking for spelling mistakes is an important part of proofreading, and your proofreading training should arm you with insider tips on this task. Once you get basic proofreading training, you will eventually evolve your own hit list of errors common to your particular field of specialization, and you may find you need to adapt standard practices to fit the specific demands of your job.

Word processors

Most proofreading these days is carried out in electronic format, which means you will be looking through a word processor file. Your proofreading training program should include the use of a particular word processor. Word processor packages all have spellcheckers, and some, such as Microsoft Word, also check for grammar. There is no shame in using this function. However, you should not just open the document in Word, look for red lines, and think your job is done. Your proofreading training will tell you to make sure you have set the dictionary language to the particular dialect of English used by the writer. There is a very distinct difference between American English and British English. Do not rely entirely on the word processor’s spellchecker.

Spelling focus

As you read through a text, you will be looking for points of grammar and layout as well as spelling. Handle each of those classifications separately, and only focus on the spelling in the document in one pass. Proofreading training will teach you to read a document several times and to focus on one problem type with each read-through.

Reading method

Each proofreader has his or her preferred reading method, which to many may seem quirky. For example, many proofreaders insist on reading a text aloud. This is a tip to ensure you read every word, rather than skim. Proofreading training will teach you other methods to ensure you focus on words, including reading the text backwards or even reading it upside down. If you are reading a hard copy of the text, you might follow standard proofreading training advice and use a card to cover the text not yet read or trace the words with your finger as you read.

Concentration

Your proofreading trainer will tell you to organize your time and get a distraction-free environment for your work. You need all your powers of concentration to focus on proofreading. Don’t break off in the middle of a text, and don’t try to check several documents simultaneously. Proofreading requires a methodical approach; formal training and some good old-fashioned practice will help you develop a method that is suitable to your own circumstances.

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Editing Jobs From Home: How to Score a Gig You Love

Editing Jobs From Home: How to Score a Gig You Love

Working away from an office can be ideal for some editors

Editing Jobs From Home: How to Score a Gig You LoveCan you be a good editor and work from home?

Of course you can!

Working on editing jobs from home can give you the freedom to advance in your career without the pressure of a traditional office environment.

To land the perfect position, all you’ll need to do is follow a few simple steps. Ready to get started? Here’s what you need to do.

1) Know what you’re looking for

So you’ve decided to do editing jobs from home. Before you start applying, ask yourself what type of position you’re really looking for. Are you comfortable doing freelance editing, or are you looking for a permanent, full-time gig?

If it’s the latter, start by logging in to a job bank and searching for open positions with a telecommuting option. For freelance positions, the best places to start are sites like FlexJobs or Elance. The work on these sites is often piecemeal, but it can help you build a strong portfolio for more consistent work.

2) Do your research

You wouldn’t rent an apartment without researching it first.

To land editing jobs from home, you’ll have to exercise the same amount of caution. Job boards for stay-at-home positions are notoriously deceptive, but with a little preparation, you can make them work for you.

Once you find a job posting you like, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Can I contact the company easily?
  • Do I know anyone else who has worked for this company?
  • Is the job posting clear and easy to understand?
  • Does the job look too good to be true?

What if a company asks for your credit card number? Our advice: stay away!

When you do editing jobs from home, your boss should be paying you, not the other way around. If it doesn’t work that way, it’s likely the job is a scam and you shouldn’t waste any more time pursuing it.

3) Have a résumé and online clips ready

Do you have a portfolio with up-to-date clips?

If the answer is no, then it’s a good idea to start working on one right away.

Most companies will ask to see samples of your work before they hire you. This is standard throughout the industry, whether you do editing jobs from home or are employed by a major publishing house.

Since the average job posting is often available for just a matter of days, you’ll be much more likely to score a position if your résumé and clips are already prepared.

Once you’ve decided on editing as a career, you should create a professional website to showcase your work. Many writers have scored editing jobs from home by posting their latest clips, even if they’re just beginners.

4) Network on social media

What’s the secret to finding great editing jobs from home?

The answer might surprise you. These days, more and more writers are turning to sites like Facebook and Twitter to advertise their skills.

And it’s no surprise why. Recruiters often use these sites to find candidates for open positions.

Even if you’re planning on doing editing jobs from home, social media can help you form connections with hiring managers. By staying active on LinkedIn, you’ll be the first to know about new job postings, and you’ll be ready to apply at a moment’s notice.

Flexible, accessible, dynamic—editing jobs from home have it all

If you have a computer and great initiative, doing editing jobs from home may be for you.

Of course, the other thing you’ll need is an expert understanding of the English language. Inklyo’s online training course, EditingCamp, can help you hone your editing skills and stand out from the crowd. Don’t hesitate to sign up today.

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Different Methods of Teaching Grammar

Different Methods of Teaching Grammar

Different Methods of Teaching GrammarEnglish grammar is notoriously difficult to learn for both native and second-language speakers. There are so many intricacies, obscure rules, and exceptions that it comes as no surprise that different generations of teachers have used various approaches to teaching grammar to train literate English writers. In the past, memorization-based techniques that relied on repetition slowly gave way to more creative methods. Today, we live in a society that prizes literacy and is willing to adapt to more effective methods to achieve the best results in teaching grammar.

Inklyo has a Grammar Boot Camp you might want to check out. Below, you’ll learn some of the other methods for teaching grammar.

Diagramming Sentences

One of the older forms of teaching grammar, diagramming sentences, first appeared in the 19th century. This method involves visually mapping the structures of and relationships between different aspects of a sentence. Especially helpful for visual learners, this method disappeared from modern teaching at least 30 years ago. Different forms of diagramming are used to visualize sentences, from the Reed-Kellogg System to dependency grammar, but all organize the functions of a sentence in a way that illustrates the grammatical relationships between words. More recently, diagramming sentences has had a small pop-culture resurgence in prints of famous opening sentences and websites that allow you to diagram to your heart’s content.

Learning Through Writing

This method is often used in schools in the U.S. and Canada. Students are encouraged to explore language through creative writing and reading, picking up correct grammar usage along the way. If there are specific problems with certain grammatical rules, these are covered in a more structured lesson. An emphasis is now being placed upon language acquisition over language learning, as it has been observed that learning grammar by memorization does not work well and that students are better able to recognize and understand grammatical rules when lessons are more interactive (i.e., they have to apply these rules in their own writing). Repeated practice is also important and easily achieved through creative or personal writing exercises. This article, posted by The Atlantic, suggests that to better equip future adult writers, teachers in the 21st century should consider dropping outdated grammar teaching techniques in early education and opt for learning through writing techniques.

Inductive Teaching

The inductive method of teaching grammar involves presenting several examples that illustrate a specific concept and expecting students to notice how the concept works from these examples. No explanation of the concept is given beforehand, and the expectation is that students learn to recognize the rules of grammar in a more natural way during their own reading and writing. Discovering grammar and visualizing how these rules work in a sentence allow for easier retention of the concept than if the students were given an explanation that was disconnected from examples of the concept. The main goal of the inductive teaching method is the retention of grammar concepts, with teachers using techniques that are known to work cognitively and make an impression on students’ contextual memory.

Deductive Teaching

The deductive method of teaching grammar is an approach that focuses on instruction before practice. A teacher gives students an in-depth explanation of a grammatical concept before they encounter the same grammatical concept in their own writing. After the lesson, students are expected to practice what they have just been shown in a mechanical way, through worksheets and exercises. This type of teaching, though common, has many people—including teachers—rethinking such methods, as more post-secondary level students are revealing sub-par literacy skills in adulthood. As one former teacher states, deductive teaching methods drive many students away from writing because of the tediousness of rote learning and teacher-centered approaches.

Interactive Teaching

Another method of teaching grammar is to incorporate interactivity into lessons. Using games to teach grammar not only engages students but also helps them to remember what they’ve learned. This method allows teachers to tailor their lessons to the different learning styles of students. For instance, each student can be given a large flashcard with a word on it, and the students must physically arrange themselves into a proper sentence. Other games can include word puzzles or fun online quizzes.

Over the years, many methods have been developed for teaching grammar and have been built upon, abandoned, or combined, all with the same goal in mind—teaching students how to communicate effectively and understand how to use the English language. Because of the grammatical complexity of English, each method has its pros and cons. Some lessons are less likely to be remembered, while others may require more in-depth explanation and practice. Regardless of how grammar is taught, a well-rounded understanding of English grammar is the most important factor in improving the literacy of students.

 

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Careers in Proofreading

Careers in Proofreading

Consider the many different careers in proofreading

Careers in Proofreading Proofreading requires specific skills. If you have decided you have the right temperament for checking other people’s writing, you should think about the different jobs available in proofreading so you can tailor your career path. Although proofreading requires the same skills no matter what job you take up, careers in proofreading can diverge depending on the individual’s professional goals.

Lifestyle choices

The biggest influences on which career path you take are your lifestyle goals. Do you want to travel? Are you prepared to move to find the right job? Do you prioritize staying with your friends and family in your hometown? Ambitious people who prioritize their work above their personal life will likely look for different careers in proofreading than will those who are just looking for a steady income. Opportunities in proofreading exist all over the world, but they are not evenly spread out. Take stock of your priorities before you decide which of the many careers in proofreading you want to pursue.

In-house vs. freelance careers

The biggest difference in proofreading jobs lies in whether you want full-time employment or prefer to be flexible and work independently on short contracts. If you have relatives or children to take care of at home, you may prefer part-time or home-based work. These days, that does not necessarily mean you have to settle for freelance work. Some employers are happy to allow their employees to telecommute. Similarly, some freelance contracts require proofreaders to work in an office. Site-based and home-based jobs exist in both the in-house and freelance worlds. Careers in proofreading offer any combination of these possibilities.

Academic proofreading

If you went to college and earned a degree, you have the option of extending your studies by proofreading the work of academics. Careers in proofreading that focus on academic writing require adherence to a different set of style guidelines than those for general publications. This means that the academic world looks for proofreaders who have followed a specific career path and have résumés packed with academic proofreading experience. You don’t necessarily need to be freelance to follow this career path. If you live in a town that has a large university, there is likely an editorial services company nearby that can give you permanent work checking academic papers. Remember, though, that to build a career, rather than just getting a series of jobs, you need to be discerning about which jobs you apply for. Make sure they always fit into this category if you want to establish a career in academic proofreading.

Advertising

Advertising agencies offer a variety of opportunities for careers in proofreading. Sales materials include advertisement copy, TV ad scripts, sales brochures, flyers and leaflets, and brand promotion. Always remember that, to forge a career, you may need to specialize. The advertising industry offers different kinds of work for those pursuing careers in proofreading, such as checking the persuasive text of ads and proofreading factual documents, bids, and specifications for accuracy.

Publishing

When considering careers in proofreading, most people probably think of the publishing industry as a source of work. Publishing is still one of the main sources of work for proofreaders and is very diverse in the kinds of formats you can work in. Books, magazines, and newspapers all need to be checked for spelling and grammar. However, many proofreaders manage to do jobs without ever working on printed material. Material published online also needs to be proofread, which has opened up even more career opportunities. Remember, however, that it pays to specialize. Choose a career path, and stick to it.

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