RE: New to tech writing

Subject: RE: New to tech writing
From: "Carnall, Jane" <Jane -dot- Carnall -at- compaq -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 19 Feb 2001 10:33:46 -0000

Michael Terry is a <<junior tech writer at a prestigiuos firm in New York. I
was given an assignment to write a technical specifications document for our
internal tech staff and well as a technical discussion guide to be used when
posing question to clients. >>

You need to talk to the people who will be using the spec and the guide.
They know what they need, even if they don't know they know. Maybe you
need to study interviewing techniques, but the basics are politeness,
accuracy, attention to detail, willingness to ask stupid questions, and a
large notepad and a supply of multi-coloured pens.

<< The template has been devised and its components have been put together
but I am
having a hard time as to what questions need to be addressed and examples
used in regards to business rules, user and functional requirements,
platforms? Can someone steer me in the right direction as to some samples I
can use? Please help.>>

You need to talk to the people who asked you to produce the documents. What
are their ideas about what they require? You don't need random samples out
of nowhere: you need your firm's business rules, their user and functional
requirements, the platforms they're used to using.

Good luck and have fun!

Jane Carnall
Technical Writer, Compaq, UK
Unless stated otherwise, these opinions are mine, and mine alone.

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