Reading and writing are inseparable ends of a thread, just like day and night. Every piece of writing is destined to be read by someone in its due course.
Proofreading and editing are inevitable steps of writing before presenting it to the audience. And every writer would attest that one of the best ways of finding and fixing errors is reading what you wrote aloud.
Why Read Aloud?
Being a writer, sentences, their formats, and the choice of words may seem faultless to you, but the content should also be judged from a reader’s perspective. A reader enjoys a smooth transition from one idea to another.
When you skim through your writing piece in your mind, you tend to overlook minute faults or fix them subconsciously. By reading your draft aloud, you put your feet into your audience’s shoes.
You can ask your friend, “help me with my essay,” if you still struggle to perfectly edit your assignments. When you hear your draft, your brain processes it as new information and recognizes if there’s any muddle.
Benefits of Reading Aloud
You Assess as You Listen
“Reading your own material aloud forces you to listen” – Stephen Ambrose, historian and biographer.
Listening to your written material, you assimilate the information, and the brain gets inputs from multiple channels. This intensifies the process of evaluation.
The rhythm of your article should be in symphony with the main theme. Only then will it appeal to the senses. When you listen to your paper, you may notice the places where you have jumped from one piece of information to another without interlacing them.
Reading aloud will uncover words, phrases, or awkward and wordy sentences that just don’t work. All you have to do is highlight such spots on your way while reading your work aloud to be able to go back and rectify them later.
You Set the Ideal Pace & Tone
Every article or essay needs to be communicated in a specific tone that sits well with its target audience. If you fail to convey your thoughts in the right tone, your readers will not get to the soul of your article. The sentences that feel difficult to read or break the flow are indeed replaceable.
When you hear your paper, it gives you an immediate sense of how it should feel. If what you wrote does not make the desired impact, you may need to rewrite some fragments of your material with phrases that impart the expected effect on the audience.
You Can Notice Skipped or Misplaced Sentences and Words
When you proofread your article, you may feel the need for some words or sentences to be introduced to complete the sense of what has been written. Glancing through your content may not lead you to find those missing patches.
However, reading aloud may help you identify the errors that you didn’t notice earlier. While you are on it, if you seem to be getting irritated or facing the urge to skip a part, it is a good sign that the section needs to be redrafted.
Listening to your work may also help you immediately think of appropriate alternatives that will improve your piece of writing. Do not forget to note them down before they slip your mind.
You Reckon Grammatical Errors
More often than not, it happens that you accidentally place an incorrect form of a verb or add an inappropriate article in the flow of writing. While proofreading, you might overlook such issues. But when you read aloud, you are more likely to notice the mistake as your sentence would be perceived as wrong in some way.
Reading in Front of Someone Else
If you want to take your editing up a notch, you can ask a friend to listen to you when you read your writing piece. The effect of having someone to judge your article will make you more critical of your work. That way, you will recognize some errors that you wouldn’t have otherwise.
You can either read while your friend listens or have your friend read it to you at a rhythmic pace.
If you like your work to be read to you by someone else, you can rely on technology too. Many of the writing tools, such as Google Docs, have a built-in text-to-speech feature in them. You can also install a text-to-speech online tool. This online speaker reads your text to you at a set pace, allowing you to focus on the rhythm, tone, and grammar.
Reading aloud is a useful practice for every writer. Whether you are an engineering college student working on essays or pursuing your career as a writer, you can keep polishing your skills with the help of such a unique approach. Incorporate this technique in your writing, and you will certainly benefit from it.