RE: Breaking into the tech writing job market

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.

Eric L. Dunn
Senior Technical Writer


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RE: Breaking into the tech writing job market: From: John Posada

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