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What the Infamous Game of Thrones Coffee Cup Proves About the Power of Proofreading

The Battle of Winterfell. Arya Stark slays the Night King. The victory is celebrated with a commemoration of the lives lost to keep Westeros free of white walkers… and a Starbucks coffee cup?

Game of Thrones fans and critics more than likely expected the Battle of Winterfell to make headlines after the episode premiered. Its 82-minute duration made it the longest Game of Thrones episode ever. The length of the actual battle made it the longest battle sequence in TV history! It reportedly took 11 weeks to film, $15 million to produce and featured 750 people on set.

The momentum was set. Expectations for the rest of the season were at an all-time high. Most headlines and news stories focused on the success of the final season of Game of Thrones so far. That was, of course, until the Coffee Cup Saga began.

An eagle eye fan notices a coffee cup left on the table in a scene – a discovery that apparently broke the Internet and shattered the glass ceiling for Game of Thrones fans!

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Game of Thrones has obviously taught plenty of lessons in content creation and marketing over the years. Most of those lessons focused on the marks this show hit, but there is still an important lesson taught by what this show apparently missed.

Nothing Tops the Power of a Proofread

Your chosen topic or subject matter may be powerful. Your content might be powerful. You may think there is no way anyone can overpower your content. That is, of course, until you look in the mirror. The grim reality is that you can compromise the power of your own high-quality content with a low-quality proofread.

Most content creators, successful authors and award-winning screenwriters will tell you that the most important part of the process is the proofreading phase. The words and thoughts may pour out like wine from a goblet as you create your first draft. You may even cheer like a mighty warrior as you slice and dice your way through each sentence and paragraph as you head towards the period of your closing sentence.

If you do not take the time to review your work, however, you may later realize that an overlooked typo or error has turned the tables on you – like a misworded sentence, undetected spelling error, or a coffee cup in a period piece.

Exhaustion is Not an Excuse for Errors

You may have noticed in forums, blogs and other GOT-related posts that exhaustion comes up frequently as a justifiable reason (or arguable excuse) for the coffee cup mishap. As referenced above, a lot of time, effort and energy was spent filming the Battle of Winterfell. That depletion of energy and effort may have caused the cast and crew to focus on rushing through the remaining scenes just to be able to wrap production and “call it a day.”

The lesson for content creators and editors is that exhaustion should never be an excuse for errors or rushing through a post just to complete it as quickly as possible. This approach could compromise the quality of your work and your reputation in general.

As soon as the coffee cup made headlines, the question, “What else did they mess up?” emerged in the minds of many – leading to quite a few fans dissecting other episodes to search for similar mistakes.

Do you want your audience members and longtime readers to dissect your past work after discovering a simple error in your most recent post? Your resounding response of “No!” is the fuel you need to keep the fire of your content burning long after Game of Thrones has ended by harnessing the power of the proofread.


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