TechWhirl (TECHWR-L) is a resource for technical writing and technical communications professionals of all experience levels and in all industries to share their experiences and acquire information.
For two decades, technical communicators have turned to TechWhirl to ask and answer questions about the always-changing world of technical communications, such as tools, skills, career paths, methodologies, and emerging industries. The TechWhirl Archives and magazine, created for, by and about technical writers, offer a wealth of knowledge to everyone with an interest in any aspect of technical communications.
Subject:RE: Breaking into the tech writing job market From:eric -dot- dunn -at- ca -dot- transport -dot- bombardier -dot- com To:John Posada <jposada01 -at- yahoo -dot- com> Date:Wed, 9 Aug 2006 13:03:20 -0400
John Posada on 08/09/2006 09:25:20 AM:
> Who said anything about engineers? I'm talking about skilled
> technical writers. A skilled technical writer is not an
> engineer...s/he is a technical writer with the ability to write for a
> targeted audience, even if that target is a novice user.
> Writing like a novice requires no skill. Writing FOR a novice
> requires more skill than for an expert.
> John Posada
> Senior Technical Writer
And who said anything about novice writers? Me thinks you're getting your
knickers in a twist about a non-issue. The people you're arguing with seem
to unanimously regard the "novice" being described as a novice with the
technology being documented. Not a novice writer.
If you know how to write clear and concise instructions, you can probably
write decent instructions for any technology that is presented to you so
long as you meet the minimum standards for a user of that product.
I have yet to see anyone argue against your view and claim an unskilled
novice writer who doesn't know the product and who can't demonstrate a
skill for good writing can write good instructions.
If choosing a new employee to write manuals the decision table is probably
something like this:
System Novice, Good Writer >> Systems Expert, Novice Writer
Systems Expert, Good Writer >> System Novice, Good Writer
System Expert, Good Writer >> All
They're putting exactly what you want first. The skill of writing
instructions to the intended audience.
This e-mail communication (and any attachment/s) may contain confidential
or privileged information and is intended only for the individual(s) or
entity named above and to others who have been specifically authorized to
receive it. If you are not the intended recipient, please do not read,
copy, use or disclose the contents of this communication to others. Please
notify the sender that you have received this e-mail in error by reply
e-mail, and delete the e-mail subsequently. Please note that in order to
protect the security of our information systems an AntiSPAM solution is in
use and will browse through incoming emails.
Ce message (ainsi que le(s) fichier/s), transmis par courriel, peut
contenir des renseignements confidentiels ou protégés et est destiné à
l?usage exclusif du destinataire ci-dessus. Toute autre personne est par
les présentes avisée qu?il est strictement interdit de le diffuser, le
distribuer ou le reproduire. Si vous l?avez reçu par inadvertance,
veuillez nous en aviser et détruire ce message. Veuillez prendre note
qu'une solution antipollupostage (AntiSPAM) est utilisée afin d'assurer la
sécurité de nos systems d'information et qu'elle furètera les courriels