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12/17/2006: What's Wrong With Meredith Gray?
I love spell check. I have friends who dislike it because it atrophies our natural spelling muscles, but I say that a language as orthographically complex as English requires a bit of help. Help without shame.
The problem with spell check is that it has no way of knowing that you didn't mean "causally". No way to know that, in fact, you meant "casually." Nor would it catch the mistake in the title of this post. This is why, when you have your friends read your specs and give you notes, you need to tell them that you also want to hear about typos.
Often, people don't want to waste your time with typo corrections, and they will assume you'll catch the errors yourself. So let them know you welcome the corrections. If you're like me, you can read your own typo a remarkable number of times without seeing it, so don't trust your own eyes. (My personal signature move is the omitted word. Or, as I like to call it, the omitted.)
And while we're talking about it, really do double-check the spelling of your characters' names -- nothing looks more amateurish than a misspelled name.
And remember that, if you're using Final Draft, spell check doesn't work on any dialogue that is in "dual dialogue" configuration. (Jeers, Final Draft!)
Lunch: A Whopper Jr. from Burger King. Loads of mayo on that baby. Cheers, Burger King!