In defense of kindness in the editorial review cycle

I took an interest in editorial reviews early in my career. That interest drove me to become a technical reviewer in the computer book industry for several years. I’m not sure they even have that role anymore. At the least publishers may not pay for that review anymore. Sitting through curt and incomplete document reviews… Continue reading In defense of kindness in the editorial review cycle

Avoiding Mission Impossible technical writing projects

Photo by Aaron Mello on Unsplash I’ve had the great fortune in my career to work on some very tough projects — in what I like to call documentation unfriendly environments — and won some and lost others but learned so much about technology and how to work independently as a technical writer. Before I accepted my current position, I… Continue reading Avoiding Mission Impossible technical writing projects

Building the better technical editing and QA cycle

Photo by Avi Richards on Unsplash It’s rare when I don’t hear complaints about the technical editing and reviewing of documents and the QA cycle in general. It’s unfortunate because building a document QA process that’s supportable and replicable Here are some considerations to keep in mind when building a technical editing and QA cycle for… Continue reading Building the better technical editing and QA cycle

5 reasons why your enterprise social network won’t improve your document reviews

Photo by Lauren Mancke on Unsplash Through my work as a technical writer, I’ve become a student of document reviews especially those performed by geographically dispersed work teams. You may know from your own experience that document reviews can be a painful process — often times poorly enforced, planned, and scheduled — meaning that some may want to throw new… Continue reading 5 reasons why your enterprise social network won’t improve your document reviews

Using Trello for managing editorial projects

My work as a technical writer sometimes means having to manage my own projects yet communicate about them in a way that programmers and engineers can understand without having flashbacks to college freshman English. I’ve come to use Trello for managing document projects. Technical people are comfortable with the tool and I can speak to… Continue reading Using Trello for managing editorial projects

3 Microsoft Word template decisions to avoid

Microsoft Word templates can be an incredible productivity tool. Templates ensure a consistent look and feel across your documents. Using a template frees you up to focus on other things about the document you are writing. Yet, Microsoft Word templates can also be a productivity sinkhole if you aren’t careful. If you don’t put some… Continue reading 3 Microsoft Word template decisions to avoid

Things they don’t teach in technical writer school

Photo by Feliphe Schiarolli on Unsplash I got my start as a technical writer before any formal technical writing degree programs got their start. While college gave me a solid foundation, much of what I know today, I learned by actually doing the work. Regardless of what professors say, there is no substitute for actually being… Continue reading Things they don’t teach in technical writer school