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.
Internships (was: Breaking into the tech writing job market)
Subject:Internships (was: Breaking into the tech writing job market) From:"Jones, Donna" <DJones -at- zebra -dot- com> To:<techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com> Date:Wed, 9 Aug 2006 13:02:15 -0500
Bonnie Granat wrote:
> > How does one get that first tech writing job without the experience?
> Usually through an internship.
I don't know that I would say "usually." I know a lot of tech writers in
the Chicago area and in Michigan, and I don't think that a single one of
them was ever an intern as a writer. I could be wrong. Maybe the subject
just never came up with someone who had done it. I didn't think that
internships were that common outside of engineering.
I think this calls for an informal poll:
- How many of you who actually started out wanting to be a tech writer
began as a tech writing intern?
- How many of you who started out as something else were interns?
I fall into the first category. My degree is in scientific and technical
communication, so I planned to be a technical writer, but I began my
career by working as a typesetter back in the days when few people had
PCs. After about a year of that, I was hired as an assistant editor
because I knew PageMaker on the Mac, which the company had just moved
to. I spent 3 years there building up things for my portfolio before I
finally landed a job with the title "Technical Writer."
I don't think there is a "usual" way to get a job as a tech writer. You
do what you can to get your foot in a door and work hard once you get
there to prove yourself. You may start out as a writer or as something
This email and any files transmitted with it are confidential, and may also be legally privileged. If you are not the intended recipient, you may not review, use, copy, or distribute this message. If you receive this email in error, please notify the sender immediately by reply email and then delete this email.
WebWorks ePublisher Pro for Word features support for every major Help
format plus PDF, HTML and more. Flexible, precise, and efficient content
delivery. Try it today! http://www.webworks.com/techwr-l