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Unread 26th May 2011, 04:04 AM   #1
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Default Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

I have been writing articles, however I am starting to notice that Microsoft Word is not as good as I thought in detecting errors in spellin, punctuation and especially grammar.

Are there any free tools that are good on the Internet that you guys could recommend in me using.

Please advise.

Thanks!

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Unread 26th May 2011, 04:21 AM   #2
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

If Word isn't as efficient as you'd want it to be, hire or ask someone else to do it for you. I don't think there are tools that will make much difference compared to Word. I heard a saying a while back, perhaps here, on this forum, something that is more than appropriate in your case: if the computer didn't write it, the computer can't edit it. Don't base something as important as proofreading only on computerized tools. Use real people instead.

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Unread 26th May 2011, 06:24 AM   #3
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

Quote:
Originally Posted by Player87 View Post
I have been writing articles, however I am starting to notice that Microsoft Word is not as good as I thought in detecting errors in spellin, punctuation and especially grammar.

Are there any free tools that are good on the Internet that you guys could recommend in me using.

Please advise.

Thanks!
Hello,

Yesterday I took on a gig for doing this exact same thing for a fellow warrior. He paid me and I submitted my report to him, so am just waiting for his feedback. I am looking to offer my services in this area, so feel free to PM me your email address (can't reply to PM's yet) and I will be able to help you.

I believe there is definite scope to do this for IM enthusiasts.


Chris
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Unread 26th May 2011, 06:27 AM   #4
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

Is English your first language? If not I would hire a proofreader for a few bucks.
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Unread 26th May 2011, 06:38 AM   #5
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

No free tool is going to replace improving your writing skills by simply doing more writing and learning. Microsoft Word checker will catch some obvious errors but do not rely on it.

Pick up a copy of "The Elements of Style" by Strunk and White. It's a fundamental writing manual and has answers for a lot of situations.

Subscribe to this link, Daily Writing Tips, to receive very useful tips every day.

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Unread 26th May 2011, 10:07 AM   #6
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

Great tips from cosmokid and Jim - nothing can replace reading through your own work with a guide next to you/open in another window and carefully checking and re-checking until you are sure it's perfect.

This applies especially if you are writing for other people - I admit I am obsessive but I cringe at the thought of supplying something that contains a mistake. It's simply not professional.

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Unread 26th May 2011, 10:16 AM   #7
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

I have tried a free service http://www.paperrater.com. It seems to be ok with my articles.

However in saying that, I would probably hire a proof reader who has many years of experience.
I rang a proof reader yesterday who is happy to write my articles for $25.00 per hour.

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Unread 26th May 2011, 10:33 AM   #8
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

You shouldn't really need to rely on an application to check your grammar or spelling. As everyone else has suggested, I recommend hiring a proofreader if you're having a hard time.

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Unread 26th May 2011, 10:39 AM   #9
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

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Originally Posted by Amanda Craven View Post
Great tips from cosmokid and Jim - nothing can replace reading through your own work with a guide next to you/open in another window and carefully checking and re-checking until you are sure it's perfect.

This applies especially if you are writing for other people - I admit I am obsessive but I cringe at the thought of supplying something that contains a mistake. It's simply not professional.

Well I might be suffering from OCD (had some similar symptoms too :p)

but I cringe at the thought of even others making a mistake!

That compulsion to make things right has always helped me with rapid writing, re-writing, proofreading and everything in general.
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Unread 26th May 2011, 10:46 AM   #10
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

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Originally Posted by wendymay1 View Post
I have tried a free service http://www.paperrater.com. It seems to be ok with my articles.

However in saying that, I would probably hire a proof reader who has many years of experience.
I rang a proof reader yesterday who is happy to write my articles for $25.00 per hour.
Is that a price that people pay? I've been pitching at about half that I think
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Unread 26th May 2011, 10:48 AM   #11
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

I have been using Open Office from Oracle for ages.

I don't even remember word, because I can do everything Word Can, with greater flexibility.

That spelling and grammar thing is more easily fixable in Open Office, as there are packages available for updating that semantic analysis functionality.

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Unread 26th May 2011, 11:15 AM   #12
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

I have found that most of the things Word can't/doesn't pick up on are things you should be able to pick up on with a proofread.

That said, it is usually best to wait a few hours (or a day, if you have it) to go over a piece you've just worked on. You'll usually be able to find blatant errors, word misuse, etc.

If you doubt your own skills, than I'd go with the other suggestions of hiring someone to proofread your work for you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Player87 View Post
I have been writing articles, however I am starting to notice that Microsoft Word is not as good as I thought in detecting errors in spellin, punctuation and especially grammar.

Are there any free tools that are good on the Internet that you guys could recommend in me using.

Please advise.

Thanks!

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Unread 26th May 2011, 11:18 AM   #13
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

I agree with everyone else......a program is only going to pick up so much. If you're not confident in your own spelling and grammar skills, have someone else do it for you.

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Unread 26th May 2011, 11:22 AM   #14
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

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Originally Posted by ChrisMcDonald View Post
Is that a price that people pay? I've been pitching at about half that I think

Chris.....it sounds like this person is writing and proofreading for $25 an hour. The rates for just proofreading seem to be anywhere from .01-.06 a word.

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Unread 26th May 2011, 11:45 AM   #15
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

yeah I agree with doing it from a VA if possible


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Unread 26th May 2011, 12:09 PM   #16
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

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Originally Posted by Jacqueline Smith View Post
Chris.....it sounds like this person is writing and proofreading for $25 an hour. The rates for just proofreading seem to be anywhere from .01-.06 a word.
Ok, thank you! I will use this basis, but since I'm starting out I'm not sure if I should pitch in at the big guns rate, so have been undercooking the rate somewhat
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Unread 26th May 2011, 02:02 PM   #17
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

I would suggest you to try English Grammar Software. Check Grammar, Edit & Enhance your Texts using our Writing & Translation tools | World-Leading Language Solutions by WhiteSmoke. This is not an affiliate link. It is possibly the best grammar and spell check software available in the market today. It is not free but not expensive either. You may try out the trial version before paying a proof reader.

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Unread 26th May 2011, 04:18 PM   #18
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

Majority suggest that you hire a proofreader if you have doubt with your grammar and spelling check, I also go for it..less hassle, less thinking, less effort. Honestly, I also have problem with it.

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Unread 26th May 2011, 05:44 PM   #19
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

There are tools that can correct you spelling and grammar. I tried one but i am not satisfied with it. So i hired a writer and at the same time a proofreader. Ideally, he did it very well. Why not hire someone who can do it for you.
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Unread 26th May 2011, 07:36 PM   #20
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

You may try WhiteSmoke Grammar Check, Punctuation Invaders, Atomicrobot Spelling Checker, etc. But you may also try improving your writing skills, practice makes perfect.

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Unread 26th May 2011, 11:00 PM   #21
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

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Originally Posted by Greg Wildermuth View Post
If English is your first language and you're a writer, you probably just need to skim. Spellcheck doesn't always pick up stuff like "they're" and "their," but a good quick read after you're done writing will.

If you're writing stuff that's more complex and requires serious proofreading, I recommend setting it aside for a few hours (overnight is better) and then reading it with fresh eyes. You'll really be able to improve it that way.

And if all else fails, hire a proofreader.
I agree. MS Word's spelling and grammar check has little quirks like not being able to differentiate between the proper use of its and it's or as mentioned, they're and their. Hiring a good proofreader's definitely worth it especially if you have lengthy articles to edit.

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Unread 27th May 2011, 12:28 AM   #22
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

With using word I find it finds most things, or I use it to check on a sentence Im not sure sounds right. I agree that writing your article and leaving it until the next day - lots of things can show up, especially if money is in a bit of short supply.



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Unread 27th May 2011, 01:17 AM   #23
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

I agree with everyone else, if you can afford it then you would do good with hiring a proofreader, but 25.00 an hr sounds kind of steep. I know I can't afford that right now, I just type the word in Google if I think it's misspelled.

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Unread 27th May 2011, 02:22 AM   #24
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

Spellcheckers generally do an excellent job - as long as the word they are checking is the correct homonym.

If you put a little distance between the writing and the proofreading you'll do a much better job. If you rush into it, your short-term memory will be very vivid and subconsciously bypass what you actually wrote, and tend to read on what you intended to write. A day or two will radically improve your proofreading. Unless the errors jump off the page and grab you by the throat, outsource this stage - but only to someone who is truly competent, and going to provide more service than charging you to run it through their spellchecker and the top two or three dozen most common errors in grammar and usage.
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Unread 27th May 2011, 03:03 AM   #25
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

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Originally Posted by ChrisMcDonald View Post
Is that a price that people pay? I've been pitching at about half that I think
US$25/hour seems high for basic services - especially in this economy. Unless you're contracting, many editors will probably quote you a rate based on word count with a minimum fee.

Most of the time, I use graduate students majoring in disciplines related to my niches. I pay them a premium rate because it's highly specialized work the average editor hasn't done since college.
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Unread 27th May 2011, 03:12 AM   #26
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

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Originally Posted by hwhite View Post
US$25/hour seems high for basic services - especially in this economy. Unless you're contracting, many editors will probably quote you a rate based on word count with a minimum fee.

Most of the time, I use graduate students majoring in disciplines related to my niches. I pay them a premium rate because it's highly specialized work the average editor hasn't done since college.
Yes, good point! I've put a Fiverr gig up to proofread any blog/article/site etc that has 1000 words, for $5. That seems about right to me, and probably less than most?
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Unread 27th May 2011, 05:58 AM   #27
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Default Re: Checking Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar

I sometimes use: Check Spelling, Style, and Grammar with After the Deadline

Main page is at: http://afterthedeadline.com/

It doesn't catch everything, so you do have to be careful.
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