The ability to write effectively is a very important career skill that many people have not developed. When asked how she became so successful, an author of many bestselling books said:
Very few of us are effective writers. Rather we have learned to edit and proofread carefully. Our first-draft manuscript is often quite mediocre.
She went on to explain that editing and proofreading are separate activities done at separate times that require different skill sets. Editing is a mental process that involves checking your work to see if it meets certain standards.
Different things are involved in editing. The content must be checked to ensure that the information is accurate. The ideas must be organized and presented logically. The tone must be crisp, concise, and interesting. The work must be free of errors in grammar, spelling, and work usage.
Proofreading is the final step after the work has been edited carefully. It is the last opportunity to ensure that your work is error-free.