Subject: beginnings
From: "J. SAINTEN, MDL-SL, X1632" <JEANETTES -at- MDLI -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 31 May 1996 15:34:40 -0800

Hello list-eners,

I have just officially become a technical writer. Before last
month I was in the "how do I become one?" camp.

I, too have technical expertise and enjoy writing.

What I did to get a position as a technical writer is:
1. I let my managers know that I wanted to write
2. I talked to technical writers at my company and asked them how
they started and asked them what it is like to write here.
3. I took great pains to write and edit effectively
4. I started saving documents that I had written -- in case
anyone ever requested a portfolio.
5. I volunteered to write some documents when the technical
communications group was swamped and a project team needed
something written.
6. I changed departments and started working for a manager
who pays attention to the strengths and desires of her employees.

So, when my manager was granted an opening in her
technical communications group she asked them if they knew
of anyone they would like to have join them. They already
respected my writing and said they would be happy to work
with me.
I was then asked to join the technical communications group
while not yet relinquishing my current duties. In about a year
I'll have to decide which side of the fence I like and will then have
the opportunity to be a full-time technical communicator.


Jeanette Sainten

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