In Branding, Design and Inspiration

Unlike Death by Chocolate (my go to choice for dessert), Death-by-Typo is something I try to avoid at all cost. To help me in this never ending endeavor, I’ve developed the following techniques:

1. Get it right from the start.

Working with mindful focus right from the start of the design process, and as you add and modify content, will help avoid making mistakes in the first place.

2. Let InDesign help

Get into the habit of toggling from Preview to Normal view by hitting ‘w’ on your keyboard. While in Normal view, you will be able to easily see the telltale little red squiggle under misspelled words. (Make sure you have Enable Dynamic Spelling selected. Preferences/Spelling).

3. Be a power spell check user.

By this I mean, when spell check comes across a frequently unknown word, such as a client name, instead of selecting ignore, hit the ‘add’ button to add it to the dictionary.

4. Slow and steady really does lead the way.

Rushing and moving too fast is when you are more likely to make a critical mistake. So Stop. Take a breath. Then focus – steadily working your way through.

5. Run spell check, again.

Even if you know you have been very careful while entering in all the content and your AD is due now, resist the urge to hit submit and run spell check one more time.

6. Fresh Eyes

If possible have someone who hasn’t been a part the project to proof it. You’d be surprised what typo almost slipped through the cracks when utilizing this step. If there isn’t someone else, try the following:

  • If time allows, proof the next day.
  • Turn off all caps. It’s hard for our eyes to ‘see’ all caps.
  • Avoid proofing on screen.
  • Try reading the text backwards.
  • Read the text out loud. If your voice stumbles, there’s probably an error.
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