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Proofing Practices

Thoroughly go through a Printer's proof as if it is the first proof you have seen, before signing off on it. Text and special symbols sometimes drop out or appear differently than what was supplied by the Designer. It is also not uncommon for graphics to look blurry or pixelated on a Printer's proof because the link to the high resolution image was broken.

Compare the Printer's proof page-by-page with the PDF proof supplied by the Designer to make sure they match. A method used by printers is 'flashing.' This is done by laying a page from the Designer's proof on a light table or a sunny window and place the corresponding page from the printer's proof over it. Line up the text of both pages and then rapidly lift and replace the top page. If anything is different, it will jump out as a 'blip' in your vision. This method is fast and requires no reading, but it is also assuming the approved proof from the Designer is correct and accurate.

To be completely safe, the designed book should be read, but not by the author. Having someone not involved in the project look at the proof is another great way to catch possible errors. Very often a casual read by a third party identifies errors that would have otherwise been missed.

Also see Working with Printers.

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