Not So Fast, Mister

My job as a proofreader is only so in the most academic sense in that I am paid to find and correct mistakes. But the difference between this and previous proofing jobs is that I don’t have the leeway to grab my red pen and start marking up clean copies like crazy.

Rather, I have a clean copy and a redlined copy and what I do is make sure that the corrections on the redlined version have been made on the most current clean copy, and that it matches the redline character-by-character. That’s right—I have to proof one character at a time and in up to 24 languages, most of which I am not fluent in. You don’t have to be if you’re “proofreading” like this. It’s more like one of those Moose A. Moose puzzles where you have to spot the difference between the four pictures of fuzzy little bunnies.

As you can imagine, this leads to a good deal of frustration, especially when I’m proofing something that, if I were working anywhere else, I would mark the living crap out of and return to the artist that worked on it.

That was the case today when I was proofing a doctor’s form that, um, for the lack of a better term, sucked. Now if I may be so bold, I’d like to share these errors with you along with the corrections I would have loved to make but just am not allowed to.

Ready? Here we go. Continue reading