Marking Spaces

by Heather

Proofreaders’ Marks

Writers and editors aren’t only concerned with the ink on the page, but also with the spaces separating the ink. But how can you have a mark that denotes a lack of mark, a space? Well, you can arbitrarily assign that task to a mark that rarely appears in documents:

How to know exactly where this lovely space is supposed to go? A caret like this one is used to show just where this new space is needed:

You’ll be seeing a lot of these carets in the Proofreaders Marks entries because they’re so handy for inserting all kinds of characters. But perhaps you’re wondering how to fit these marks into a document where a space is missing—after all if there’s no space there’s no space, right? That’s where the skinny caret comes in. It’s a natural outgrowth of the caret that allows a lot of precision when editing in tight spaces:

You’ll be seeing a lot of these in these entries, too.

And here’s an example of an inserted space mark in action:

That red pencil still burning a hole in your pocket protector? You can find a full listing of all the Word Blog’s Proofreaders’ Marks entries here.

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