Frequently Asked Questions


Bellbird Words

Proofreading, Editing, and Writing Services

Why should I use a proofreader?


Every written text intended for public presentation needs to be clear, easily understood, and error-free.


Mistakes can cost your established business money, clients, and your professional reputation.

If you’re an author, too many mistakes may mean an agent sends your manuscript straight to the bin.

Self-publisher? Readers won't go past the first chapter if they encounter too many mistakes, and they won't buy from you again.

If you’re a student, mistakes will almost certainly harm your grades.

If you’re a small business trying to build your customer base, mistakes in your written communications will make you appear unprofessional. You could lose customers and money.


Errors in emails, online documents, and websites are almost impossible to permanently erase. There will always a be a record somewhere in cyberspace, and people savvy enough to find it.


According to a 2013 Global Lingo poll, 74 percent of consumers notice the quality of spelling and grammar on company websites. Nearly 6 out of 10 consumers say they would not use a company whose website included poor grammar, as they would not trust it to provide a quality service.

Mistakes are costly. Can you afford to take the risk?


Couldn't I just ask a friend/colleague/partner to proofread my work for me?


You could, but there's no guaranteeing the end result. Proofreading is a specialist skill. Choose someone who's properly qualified, and you can be confident the end result will be writing that is clear, correct, consistent, and compelling.


What is the difference between proofreading and editing?


Proofreading involves correcting the mistakes in a piece of writing - spelling, grammar, formatting, punctuation, and consistency. Editing involves fixing the mistakes and making the writing better. It's up to you how much you want me to do. Before I start your job I will agree the exact terms with you and deliver (and charge) on those terms only.


How long will it take for you to proofread and/or edit my document?


It depends on the size of the job. I'll give you an estimate of how long I think it will take me before I start your job, and will keep you regularly updated.


How much will it cost?


I will work out the best rate for you based on the complexity of the job and time I estimate it will take. You'll be surprised at how reasonable my rates are. And remember, it's an investment you can't afford not to make. For more detailed information on my rates, click here.


How can I be sure you'll do a good job?


I am well-qualified, experienced, easy to deal with, and committed to crafting writing of the highest standard. See what past clients have said about my work.


I don't live in Auckland / New Zealand. Can you still help me?


Yes. Thanks to internet and email (and Skype, if you want to talk face-to-face), I can work with you no matter what town, city, or country you live in.


Do you offer special rates for students?


Yes, and I am an Approved Proofreader for Auckland University of Technology, Massey University, and the University of Auckland. That means these institutions have endorsed me as a competent and properly qualified proofreader for students. Contact me to find out more.


We're a not-for-profit organisation that needs help with writing funding applications. Is this something you do?


Yes. I worked as a fundraiser for some years, specialising in grant application writing and grants programme planning. I can work with you on a regular basis or I can write just one application (or several) for you. I can also advise you on your overall grants programme. Let's talk.


But as a not-for-profit, can we afford you?


Yes. I offer special rates for not-for-profit organisations. Contact me to find out more.


How can I get my document to you?


You can email it to me, provide me with the website address / link, or send me a hard copy in the mail.


Can you proofread my electronic document?


Of course. I am skilled in proofreading and editing all kinds of electronic documents including Word documents, PDFs, websites and blogs.


My document includes lots of tables and other graphic elements. Can you help me?


Yes. I am skilled in proofreading tables, graphs, captions...in fact, all kinds of complicated visual features. I do need to charge more for documents with lots of these elements, as they are more complex and time-consuming to proofread and edit.


My document is hard copy only, and I don't use the computer a lot. Can you still help?


Yes. You can simply send me the hard copy, and I will correct it on the page and send it back to you with an easy-to-follow corrections report.


How will I pay you?


The easiest way is by direct payment into my bank account. My account number will be on your invoice. 


When do you expect payment?


I will invoice you as soon as I finish your job, and I ask for payment within seven days. Please note: if you are an overseas client, and in some other instances, I will ask for partial payment before I begin and/or full payment before releasing your finished document to you.