The best kind of quality control is that which assumes that the product under review is like the airframe of a plane being assembled. You can’t afford to skip or miss things. Once we adopt this attitude, we open the road to excellence.
We make texts better by editing them. Casting an eye twice always helps, but it’s the kind of eye which makes the difference. Tweaking makes better, but it is always better to go beyond tweaking and recognize if there are any flaws in what we’ve written. Basically, he or she wins who manages to be his or her worse reader. The best airframe is that which passes the largest number of tests and still flies. Quality control is about sustaining the worst imaginable pressure.
We make things better by making better things. We write better things by writing things better. And we prepare them with the same kind of attention that an Airbus engineer brings to the job.
We can afford to make things poorer and worse. As long as this is an option, nothing will fly. Or worse, it will crash on take-off. Or even worse, it will crash when you least expect it, while everyone is enjoying a glass of wine.
We cannot afford to be mediocre, even with the things we may think we can be.
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