Proofreading is the final editing prior to a work's completion or publication. This is the stage in which all the finishing touches are made - the stage of editing in which duplicate words, missing words, misspelled words, and errors in formatting, spacing, and typing are caught. Best practices in editing call for proofreading to be conducted by someone who hasn’t previously edited this work...for good reason. As editors become more familiar with your written work, it becomes easier for them to “see” what’s not always there – to fill in the blanks, or to “autocorrect” a spelling error – thus missing mistakes that would otherwise readily be spotted. A pair of fresh eyes is invaluable at this point.
If Mary Lib proofreads a book she has edited, she will schedule at least a week’s break between the final copyediting and proofreading stages. She will coordinate the final proofreading of your work if you would prefer to work with Perfectly Penned through the entire process.
Following developmental editing, the remainder of your editing must take place in this order: line editing, copyediting, proofreading. In a process that can feel never-ending and frustrating for a first-time (and yes, even second- and third-time) publishing author, abiding by this order ensures the author will avoid the need for a major rewrite. When you hire Mary Lib to edit your work, she will ask for confirmation that you have been through the developmental editing process.