In just one day this week - September 29 - I came across three instances where lack of proofreading made me think "Do these people even think about what they're writing?"
First was a fundraising letter, dated 9-29, that stressed the importance of reaching their goal by the end of the quarter. It reminded readers that "We are coming up on the mid-month mark."
Um... no. I think mid-month is long gone.
Next was an email about a product that I'd ordered. It was letting me know that my package had been shipped - on October 2.
Really, and just how did they manage to ship in October when it was still September? I suppose they meant to say that it would arrive then, but that isn't what they wrote.
Then there was the article in our local weekly freebie newspaper.
We've been watching the construction of a new dollar store and seeing the "we're hiring" banners for the last few weeks. So we knew it would be opening before too long.
The article stated that residents would have a new place to shop when the store opened its doors on Thursday (the 29th). Then it went on to an interview with the store manager.
She said they had been very well received in the community and that the store had been busy. OK - and how did they do that when they were just opening that day? Was this a leftover interview with the manager of the other dollar store?
Today's email brought a message with a more common mistake...
The writer had obviously changed his or her mind about how to paraphrase what someone had said. Unfortunately, they forgot to remove what they no longer wanted, so both versions were there in the sentence. It still made sense, but was repetitive and garbled.
I see this often in blog posts - and catch it when proofreading my own writing. Usually it's just involves a couple of words, as when the writer decides to change "for" to "with," then forgets to delete "for."
The bottom line: Be sure to proofread a couple more times after you've edited your copy. It's far too easy to leave random words here and there.