I was a computer book technical reviewer earlier in my career. It was a freelance gig, but I still consider the work one of the more formative chapters in my professional writing career even though it wasn’t writing work.
Computer book technical reviewers sometimes called technical editors are responsible for ensuring the technical accuracy of information technology book manuscripts. The work taught me to pay attention to technical details, which in turn went on to influence my work as a technical writer and freelance writer.
The lessons I learned include:
Continue reading Lessons learned from working as a computer book industry technical reviewer
Every job hunt and even unsolicited discussions with recruiters during the past few years brought me more tales of organizations continuing to have issues producing and maintaining technical documentation. It is not isolated in one sector, and I keep hearing the same problems repeatedly. This has been a real disappointment for me over the years I was a contract technical writer and now that I have a staff technical writer job.
Developing technical documentation isn’t fun. Otherwise, it wouldn’t be such an afterthought. Things aren’t made any easier with a technical writing profession that is fragmented on the actual role of the technical writer.
Here are some ways organizations sabotage their technical documentation:
Continue reading 6 ways to sabotage your technical documentation
Even in the day of mobile devices and Enterprise Social Networks (ESNs), organizations can’t escape the need to review business and technical documents for accuracy, completeness, and message. I’ve been a student of technical document reviews, for much of my career. In fact, I was a computer book technical reviewer during the great computer book over-publishing of the nineties.
Continue reading A remote worker’s guide to technical document reviews
I first want to state that I’m not averse to writing tests for full-time or contract positions. Yet, in today’s economy, my time at the keyboard is tied to billable work. A request to take a writing test came to me once from a company. Looking at the information they sent me, they could submit my output from this test to their client as a deliverable. All the while, I could be out time and money for the effort, and the company has gotten the work done for free.
Continue reading The case for paid projects, not free writing tests