16 May 2017

Editing your writing with the PerfectIt intelligent proofreading add-in #AuthorToolboxBlogHop


I can’t be alone in wondering why the spell checker in Microsoft Word has hardly improved in the last ten years.  The solution is to use professional editing services, although you need to ensure your manuscript has as few avoidable errors as possible before you send it for editing.

For my last two novels I’ve been using a third-party add-in to help spot typos and ensure consistency. PerfectIt is easy to use and install and can be run at any time as an extension to the spelling checks.

In particular, I find PerfectIt good at highlighting the following, which are often overlooked by the Word spelling check:
  • Common typing mistakes (such as 'manger' instead of 'manager')
  • Words spelled in more than one way (such as 'adviser' and 'advisor')
  • Inconsistent capitalisation of headings, titles and proper nouns
  • Finding missing quote marks in dialogue
  • Highlighting phrases that are used inconsistently
  • Checking for words and phrases that appear with and without a hyphen
  • Improving consistent use of compounds, numbers, fractions and directions
  • Removing spaces before punctuation

Once installed, PerfectIt appears as a new tab in the Word menu. You can set up you style preferences and save them for different types of documents. All you have to do then is launch the add-in and follow the instructions.

You can try PerfecIt for free before you buy it - and the licence is for life, so there are no problems if you change your PC or laptop. Visit http://www.intelligentediting.com/download/download/

PerfectIt is not a substitute for a professional editor but will help your editor spend their time on things that really matter, rather than sorting out avoidable typos. 

Tony Riches

Do you have some great editing tips you would like to share? Please feel free to comment


The #AuthorToolboxBlogHop is a monthly event on the topic of resources and learning for authors. Feel free to hop around to the various blogs and see what you learn! The rules and sign-up form are below the list of hop participants. All authors at all stages of their careers are welcome to join in.

12 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing this great tool - I'll definitely try it out :-)

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  2. I used ProWritingAid because their website was free and eventually bought the Word Addon. It has bumped up my work substantially which makes me grateful on so many levels. It probably makes it easier on my beta readers too. hehehe

    Anna from elements of emaginette

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  3. I am a ProWritingAid fan as well. I have the paid version, but I think the free one is almost as good. It certainly catches errors my eyes don't.

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  4. I tried the ProWritingAid free version and found it overwhelming, with too many rewrite suggestions. ProWritingAid doesn't like my writing style. The Hemmingway app is a better fit for me. I checked to see if PerfectIt is available for Scrivener, and unfortunately it isn't. But, I noticed on their products page that a couple of the features are available as add-ons for Google docs.

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  5. Never heard of this app, but it looks interesting. Thanks for sharing!

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  6. I wonder if PerfectIt is available for Open Office? I'll have to check. I currently use ProwritingAid and love it even though it makes an extra step for me. (I do all my writing in Scrivener)
    THanks for the tip!
    Ann

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  7. I didn't know about PerfectIt. I currently use Grammarly for this, but I'm willing to try something new, too.

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  8. I have never heard of this. I might have to give it a try.

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  9. Thanks for the recommendation, I do find the spell checker in Word absolutely useless so it's good to know there are other options!

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  10. I feel like the clouds have parted, and I can see the light. Where has this magical tool been all my life? Thank you so much sharing this, Tony. :)

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  11. This sounds like an amazing tool. Finding inconsistent capitalization and open quotation marks sound AMAZING. Thanks for sharing!

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  12. I've never heard of Word add-ons. I'll need to look some up, including this one. Personally, when I edit, I get so frustrated by how long and in-depth the process of adding comments is (highlight, scroll, click, type, click out... when it ought to be just highlight and type), and I'd love to find a third-party app that makes commenting easy. I'll look up PerfectIt and see if it takes me further down the rabbit hole. Thank you!

    My post: http://wp.me/p7eeNm-1KB

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