A summer of marking and I proofread daily.
I spent the early part of summer marking: real GCSEs for two exam boards, mock exams for Multi-Academy Trusts, and a smattering of A level.
Good money you see, and I’m quick and skilled at it.
If your only experience of a classroom was when you were in one, I challenge you to try one out.
Or maybe not – it’s toxic (not the kids, but your colleagues).
30 students, 30 books, 5 times a day, all needing marking on top of planning and the useless school meetings that are calendared in.
Like managing England, it’s an impossible job but I honed speed marking to perfection. I had to or I’d have collapsed the year after I started teaching English in 1988. I managed a marathon stint though of 27 years, meaning that when presented with 200 scripts, 500 exam answers, 3000 mock exams, I don’t faint, or start twitching, but tuck into that feast.
Marking is programmed in me, like herding sheep is in Cassie, my new border collie.
I mark for exam boards, multi-academy trusts, who farm out mock exams at £4 a script to me to mark so there’s consistency. In some I have to circle all grammatical and spelling errors on the screen or with an actual red pen, and I’ve got an eye for mistakes, like a trained assassin.
To be honest, I’m one of those people on social media who pisses everyone off with grammar and spelling pedantry, not pleasantries.
Marking is one aspect of my work, along with blogging, managing social media, digital content marketing and the ability to proofread.
I think I’d do anything for money.
What this means to you – and I’ll assume you’re not a Head of English or an exam board administrator as I have plenty of marking, thank you – was that I can check your work. I can proofread anything you can email to me.
I won’t screenshot it, betray confidence or roll on the floor laughing.
I’ll proofread it, correct it and return quickly.
Does it matter though?
Course it does.
This is why it matters.
A few years ago, I was at a conference when those roller banners so beloved of exhibitionists were being unfurled.
You know the type: 3 foot wide and 6 foot tall.
Banners similar proportions too.
I caught an eye of someone I knew and he proudly started whipping out his roller banner.
In public too.
Aghast, I spotted recieve on all three – and being tactless and blunt, waited just 3 seconds to point the error out. He was mortified. He did the decent thing and put them away as it was font 750 and admitted to me that was £240 wasted.
It reminded me of telling Dave Lewis, a school friend, now CEO of Tesco, that his cassette player was slow in his Cavalier. He went places; I headed up in the desert of east Norfolk, begging for jobs.
Now if we’d been acquainted before BannerGate, I could have said: “I’ll check your printed promotion material on pay as you go.” That banner would have cost him £5 to £10 for me to check and saved the company £235 and landfill even more.
Same with email campaigns, brochures, property listings, prospectuses.
You, the writer, the printer, may not spot errors – but eagle-eyed Walton will.
If I don’t with my 9 month sober eye, I’ll refund you.
You have materials, important matter being circulated, let me check them.
I proofread, you save face.
You can pay as you go from £5 to £50 depending on document length. If it’s “War and Peace” I’d need more, obvs.
Or like two companies do: have me on a monthly retainer of £20 to £50 and email me texts, photos, captions, PDFs etc and I’ll read them immediately and send them back within an hour (providing I’m not asleep or driving of course). I can even check whilst walking the dog. I’m that bloody sad or efficient.
Think banners, think £235 of lost money and red faces and when you have a proposal, a bid, an email, a print-run, send them to me and I’ll check, reword in a jiffy and as Elvis crooned (sort of) you will “love me tender” writing.
Email: [email protected]
No free trials from me though (look at my testimonials), but no red face for you.