Artists have always used text – whether as an integral aspect of their work or because they need to write grant applications, catalogue and web biographies or artist statements.
It is always helpful to have texts proofread or checked by someone who didn’t write it – just to catch those tiny mistakes which get through and make you look less professional than you are.
Most word processors do a reasonable job at catching spelling mistakes and some software offers basic grammar checking, but sometimes you need a more robust solution.
The obvious one is to pay an editor to do those final checks or advise you on content changes. If you are writing for a professional publication, or putting together a research paper, you will normally have someone to do the editing as part of the submission process – or you can obviously pay a freelance editor to help.
If you can’t afford a professional editor and your word processor isn’t quite working for you, take a look at Grammarly.com
It carries out a spelling check, as well as flagging up 250 types of grammatical mistakes. It will also do a plagiarism check by comparing your text against over 8 billion web pages. Compared to the checkers in word processors, this is a heavyweight, which also gives you context-optimised vocabulary suggestions.
They announce themselves as “the world’s most accurate grammar checker” and certainly offer an enhanced service, which can improve readability and meaning.
You can give it a try for free here – just paste a section of text into their site and you receive an instant check. If you want details of what the site found, you can set up an account for free* and try their service for 7 days. After that, there are a number of packages, which include monthly, quarterly and yearly payments.
If you do a lot of writing and need online help, this might be an economical service – and if you just need a few pages of text checking (your new artist statement, for example) give the free* 7-day trial a go.
* Grammarly offers a 7-day money-back guarantee to first-time purchasers. If you’d like to cancel your Grammarly Premium account for any reason, just request a refund within the first 7 days of your subscription and as long as it is your first time using Premium, they will honour your request, no questions asked (they say!).