multiple TWs for a project

Subject: multiple TWs for a project
From: gyaker -at- csc -dot- com
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com
Date: Wed, 9 Feb 2000 12:27:57 -0500

Guys, I eagerly await your responses...

What's it like working on a team of tech writers? Lets say 1, A small team of
3-5 and 2, a larger team like the type that would work on a highly formalized

I ask this because most of my TWing experience has been me in the position as
the lone TW for a project or task. It's hard for me to see that teams can create
documentation with any real consistency. I did work on a 3 month project with
another TW and found myself butting heads with her on a few occasions. And
regardless of who was right, it seemed nearly impossible to keep all of our work
perfectly consistent given such a short time frame.

There's one other point I'd like to touch on. A few of the list members have
shown (daily) their strong opinions on a single 'right' way of doing things. In
the same spirit, I'm kind of hard-headed in so much as sentence A can clearly be
better than sentence B, and to this I would fight to the end. Are people like
this a detriment to a team of tech writers, especially if they are not in the
Sr. position?

Okay, so what am I really asking? Generally (ha), I have a lot of confidence in
my writing. I like to write because I like to learn. I side with the people who
place technical accuracy before everything else. Before becoming disillusioned
with management I can be obnoxious in trying to write the "Best Documentation"
(note - this is all relative). I am worried that if I work on a team of writers,
especially under a senior who I don't 100% feel employs the best tech writing
practices, I would be quite unhappy. This also applies for working alongside
incompetent TWs.

Please don't think that I'm that overly pessimistic about working on a team of
TWs. There are a number of list members whose words and experiences I fully
respect. But I don't think that the majority of TWs out there have the amount of
experience and insight as many of you. I would love to be humbled any day before
telling someone else some sort of truth.

Gil Yaker
gyaker -at- csc -dot- com
Computer Sciences Corporation
Federal Black Lung Project

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