You’ve gotta love editing. Or not. Editing is not for the faint of heart. Nor is it meant to be relegated to spell-checkers. I know, I’ve harped on this concept before and I’m going to do it again.
I was reading a book the other day and found myself positively jerked out fo the story with the word “patted.” Innocuous word, silly word, harmless word, WRONG word. The author intended the word to be “padded. As in the heroine padded across the room on stocking feet. But of course since she patted instead of padded it just looked and “sounded” odd. And weird. Especially since in the next paragraph the word padded was inserted properly making the first mistake even more prevalent. Not to mention the word shouldn’t have been used twice in such quick succession but that is a topic for another blog.
Editing is paramount. Editing means reading each and every word, each and every sentence, each and every paragraph. Editing is demanding, difficult and impossible to do flawlessly. And what it cannot be replaced with is a computer-generated spell-checker. Not when there are patted and padded to be confused for one another.
Teachers of grammar, English, and writing, make sure editing is a regular part of your student’s writing experience. Write something, edit it, then share!