Hearing is Believing
Frank Hobson of Frank Hobson Consulting offers some very valuable advice for writers who think faster than they type, find it hard to pick up little mistakes in their own writing, or generally find proofreading a big bore. I think that is most of us!
One of my best proofreading aids is text-to-speech software. I use it at the final stage of producing longer, or particularly important, documents. When proofreading your own documents (which all but the most important of us have to do nowadays) it is so easy to miss small but crucial mistakes or logical errors that had been there since your first draft. Hearing your work read back to you really helps spot that, instead of an evaluation (assess), you have actually offered a herd of donkeys (asses) or to realise that a misplaced ‘not’ has changed the whole meaning.
The program that I use is Wordread provided by Serif. It has a really nice tone of voice and a very natural way of reading the text. My version was very cheap but they no longer sell that version (which, anyway does not work beyond Windows XP. They currently sell Wordread3, which is £50. Not sure whether they offer one of their money-back-if-not-happy deals on that but there are other programs available many of which will allow a trial period download.
A related tip is that I have recently started using speech-to-text software. These programs have improved tremendously in recent years and I have been really impressed with how quickly I was able to get started and how accurately it picks up what I say. Read a little more on Frank's blog