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Why is it when you’re reading something written by someone else even 2 letters around the wrong way stands out like a sore thumb and yet you can read your own work (which looks like the product of a dyslexic frog) and it reads as though it were the most perfect prose ever!?

I swear I have read through the contents of cheeky elephant’s website (www.cheekyelephant.co.uk) 100 times now and it is perfect.  I have checked all of the links, made sure the information aligns across the pages and generally given it more attention than a new mum gives her sleeping baby.  All was fine and so I pressed the dreaded ‘publish’ button!

The problem is though, it is very very hard to see the errors in your own work.  In the corporate world when I was producing comms to go out to thousands of people I was very aware of this fact.  I encouraged my team daily to peer review ones another’s work and to always be honest in their feedback to each other (style is personal but grammar, spelling and web links are not and they need to be right).  However, ‘challenge 1063’ of going it alone is your total lack of peers!

In an ideal world you can solve this by hiring professional proof readers, but (as I seem to mention every time I post) add that to the list of the hundreds of other services you require and you are bankrupt before you have even begun (in fact 3 months in and with 2 opportunities in the flow I am yet to make a single penny and have already spent several thousand just to get up and running, mostly in stock, in the small unavoidable costs such as web hosting, survey tools etc).

In this case though the answer seems to be  a simple one.  Send your website to your network (or in my case lovely and very helpful friends) and just ask them to flick through.  It wouldn’t be fair to ask them for professional proof reading (it is as my title suggests it is a laborious and, for most of us, very painful job), however, through a simple look at what you’ve done, and an encouragement from you for complete honesty you will probably find you spot 99% of the errors.

So thank you lovely friends for your re-wording of the homepage, your noticing that a couple of the links don’t work and that the gift wrapping is priced differently in different places.  You know who you are and I just want to say how much I appreciate your support and feedback.  Please feel free to continue!!!

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