I realize that all the advancements in technology and computer software has made writing much easier and even easier is the proof reading of a document. However, let me just encourage you to still take the time to read through your documents. Print off a copy and actually proof your work.
First of all I say to print off a copy because when I’m doing proof reading, I take my red pen and mark any and all pieces that need to be edited, but also I will cross out unnecessary words or mark through and correct spelling above any misspelled words. Then once I’ve done the entire document, I will then go into the soft or digital copy and begin editing that based on the red marks located on my proof copy. If I try to read the digital copy and make corrections I’m more prone to missing other more minor mistakes which can still detract from the skill a writer may possess.
Secondly, I say that you should actually take the time and read through your document. This is simple. Just because spell check has corrected any misspelled words does not mean that you have put the correct words in place. If you type angle, but mean angel spell check will not let you know the difference because both are spelled correctly but they have two very different meanings. This is also a mistake that you will overlook unless you take the time to actually read through your document carefully with the ever watchful eye of an editing hawk.
Finally, take a breather between writing something and proofreading it. I realize that you may not be afforded this opportunity if you are doing this writing as a school assignment or as part of your vocation. If like me you also write for leisure or for the enjoyment of a reading audience you one day hope to share you works with, then please take a break between writing the story and proofreading/editing the story. I take between four to six weeks, just so I can come at it fresh and not read what I meant to put on paper as opposed to what I actually put on paper. Just because it sounded good in my head a month ago, it may sound absolutely horrid now that I’ve moved forward and possibly started on something new or just taken a few weeks to let my mind build back up its strength.
This is my advice if you are going to proofread, then actually proofread off of a hard copy and do not trust spell check to actually fix all your problems. So remember this and keep a sharp eye out as you edit away.