Here’s a list of some FAQs (frequently asked questions) that might help you to find out more about what to expect regarding how the services that I provide work.
What happens if I’m not happy?
How do I get a quote?
Please complete the form at Contact me, email me or text or call me on +44 (0)7503 845938. Ideally, please send me your text too, so that I can assess how much work is needed.
How do I know my work will be kept confidential?
Please see section 5 of my Terms and Conditions, ‘Privacy and personal information’. You retain ownership and sole copyright over your work, including any version amended by me.
A general guide is as follows:
up to 10,000 words – two to three days
20,000 words – three to four days
over 20,000 words – please ask.
These timescales can be longer or shorter depending upon my other work commitments.
I will always tell you, before you decide whether to use my service, whether or not I can meet your deadline.
If I’m working on a Word document, you will receive the tracked text. Non-student clients will also receive a ‘clean’ copy of your text, with all changes ‘accepted’, so that you can read my suggested final version of your text more easily.
You should always keep a copy of the text you have sent to me. When you receive a copy of the proofread document you should also keep a copy of the text which shows all of my amendments and deletions in colour, together with the balloons, so that you can refer back to that document if you need to. This is especially important for students – your university may want to see the tracked version to check the extent of changes suggested.
What are the benefits of using a proofreader?
Poor or incorrect grammar, confusing sentence structure or misspelling can really devalue your work and reflect badly on you. Spellcheckers and grammar checkers are good at spotting some errors, but will definitely not pick up on all of your mistakes, especially errors such as using the wrong word in a sentence when that word does actually exist, for example ‘he was dependant on her’ (the correct spelling is ‘dependent’ or ‘she was form Russia’ (instead of ‘from’).
How will the proofreading service improve my text?
Everyone who produces a piece of written work has an aim for it. An academic’s priority may be to convey their meaning effectively and clearly without any ambiguity; a student’s main aim may be to produce a grammatically correct text that is fluent and clear so that their arguments and ideas are immediately apparent to the person marking the work. A business preparing documents for marketing purposes will want to ensure that its current customers understand the nature of its business and are encouraged to continue to use its services and that potential customers try their services out for the first time. And an author of fiction will want to engage the reader by using language in a certain way.
a. How do I accept or reject a change?
There are two ways to do this (these options may differ slightly depending on what version of Word you have), but remember to keep a copy of the marked-up document showing my suggestions so that you can refer back to my changes if you want to:
- Right click on the change. It’s best to click right at the beginning of each changed area, i.e. at its left end rather than its right. A small pop-up menu will appear. Click on the relevant option to ‘Accept Insertion/Deletion’ or ‘Reject Insertion/Deletion’. If you ‘Accept’ the change, the coloured text will change to black (accepting an insertion) or the text with a coloured line through it will disappear (accepting a deletion). If you ‘Reject’ the change, the coloured text will disappear (rejecting an insertion) or the text with a coloured line through it will be reinstated in black (rejecting a deletion). Your text will then be as it was originally.
- Go to the ‘Review’ tab and click on the arrow at the bottom of the ‘Accept’ option (if you want to accept a change) or the ‘Reject’ option (if you want to reject a change). Choose the ‘Accept and Move to Next’ or ‘Reject and Move to Next’ option from the drop-down menu, depending on what you want to do. Each change will be altered according to the choice you have made and then the next one highlighted in the text in order as you go through the text page by page.
You can also use the ‘Previous’ and ‘Next’ options on the ‘Review’ tab to move backwards and forwards between changes if you wish.
b. What if the ‘accept’ or ‘reject’ menu doesn’t appear when I right click?
This will be because the text you are clicking on has a red or green wavy line beneath it. The pop-up menu that appears when you right click will have, amongst its options, ‘ignore’ or ‘ignore once’. Click on one of these and the green or red wavy line will disappear. You can then right click again on the relevant word and the ‘Accept’ or ‘Reject’ menu will appear.
c. To accept all changes
You can do this, but I don’t recommend doing so until you have checked each of my suggested changes individually first. You are responsible for your text and must be happy with the suggestions before you accept them. I should already have sent you a version of your text with ‘all changes accepted’ for you to refer to separately. Remember to keep a copy of the marked-up document showing my suggestions so that you can refer back to my changes if you want to.
If you have Microsoft Word 2010, go to the ‘Review’ tab and click on the arrow at the bottom of the ‘Accept’ option. A small drop-down menu appears. Click on ‘Accept All Changes in Document’.
If you have earlier versions of Word, you may have to go to the ‘Review’ tab and select the drop-down menu for Track Changes. Find the option ‘Accept All Changes’ or ‘Accept All Changes in Document’ and click on it.
d. To reject all changes:
If you have Microsoft Word 2010, go to the ‘Review’ tab and click on the arrow at the bottom of the ‘Reject’ option. A small drop-down menu appears. Click on ‘Reject All Changes in Document’.
If you have earlier versions of Word, you may have to go to the ‘Review’ tab and select the drop-down menu for Track Changes. Find the option ‘Reject All Changes’ or ‘Reject All Changes in Document’ and click on it.
e. How do I delete the balloons?
I strongly recommend reading the comments before you delete them, as the balloons will contain an explanation for a change or a suggestion for a change that is necessary or that you might want to make. Right click on the balloon. Click on the ‘Delete Comment’ option which will remove the balloon and the text inside it.
If you wish to delete all balloons at once, you should go to the ‘Review’ tab and choose the ‘Delete’ option by clicking on the small arrow at the bottom of that option. Choose ‘Delete All Comments in Document’.
f. What if there are vertical lines showing to the left of the text once I have checked through the text?
This is probably because you have not spotted all of the suggested changes or the lines relate to a structural change such as a change in spacing between paragraphs which you cannot see. If you have any of these lines remaining, check that you’ve not missed any changes by me that you need to check, but if you are happy with what you see, you should go to your ‘Review’ option and choose ‘Accept All Changes’, which will then make these lines disappear at the same time as accepting any remaining changes you have not already dealt with.
Do you proofread hard copy?
Yes, I can proofread hard copy using BSI (British Standards Institution, 2005) proof-correction marks if you wish. I would charge you the cost of the postage using whatever delivery you prefer in addition to my fee.
When do I pay?
If my fee is for more than £500 I will ask you to pay 50% of the fee shortly before the work begins. I ask for my fee (or the balance of the fee) to be paid in full within 30 days of the date of the invoice. However, for regular clients I am happy to discuss alternative arrangements.
How do I pay?
Please let me know immediately by emailing me, by filling in the contact form or by telephoning me and I will try to put things right if I am at fault. My aim is to ensure that you are a satisfied client.
You can cancel your instruction for me to carry out the work within 7 days of that instruction before work has begun and there will be no fee. If work has begun, I have the right to charge you for the work I have done. Please see numbers 14 (‘Cancellation’) and 19 (‘Complaints and refunds’) of my Terms and Conditions for full details about possible remedies.
I hope you’ve found these FAQs helpful.