RE: (No Subject)

Subject: RE: (No Subject)
From: "Lisa Wright" <liwright -at- uswest -dot- net>
To: "Sierra Godfrey" <kittenbreath -at- hotbot -dot- com>, "TECHWR-L -at- LISTS -dot- RAYCOMM. COM" <TECHWR-L -at- LISTS -dot- RAYCOMM -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 12:35:57 -0700

Hmmm. Some tricky questions here, complicated by the fact that you've
apparently got a personality conflict with marketing chick. (Not being
critical, just making an observation.)

One way to look at it is that part of research for writing is to gather all
the available written materials, technical manuals included. So, her request
may not be out of line. Marketing folks have to understand the features of
the software, and the way to get that is to read the documentation. Do you
re-invent the wheel every time you have to find out how something works? Of
course not. You find out what others have done before you and work from
that. When you wrote your drafts, did you just take the software and figure
it out function by function, or did you work from specifications and
requirements documents and so on? Marketing chick may not understand what
the features are if she has to figure them out herself from interviewing
technical folks. Plus, it costs the company everyone's time (that means
money) to do again what you've already spent doing.

I'm in a situation right now where I'm the only writer for a small startup.
We don't have a product manager, and we're outsourcing our marketing
materials. I've been working with the marketing writer on developing product
inserts, brochures and the like. I'm ending up doing a good deal of the
initial writing and research because I'm here and I'm in a better position
to do it. The first thing the writer did was ask for all the material I'd
already written about our first product. She based a good deal of her
product insert on that, but she also did that voodoo marketing writing thing
that they do (which I don't begin to understand). We're trying to
collaborate to get these very important documents done. It takes my time
away from my "real" job, but my boss also knows that I'm making a valuable
contribution, and that should translate into something for me. Can you make
sure that your boss and/or marketing chick's boss know that your work is
contributing to the success of the company in more ways than one?

I will distribute electronic drafts of my work, but I try to make sure it
has DRAFT stamps on it and also that it LOOKS like a draft. When I sent text
to our marketing writer, I sent plain, unformatted text. Again, it wastes
the company's money to have marketing chick re-type what you've already
done. And as Barry pointed out, you ensure that they're making accurate
claims--to have marketing chick write up inaccurate information will make
the COMPANY look bad, not you (unless it's known that you had the
information and wouldn't share), and that could affect your paycheck.

No specific advice on Frame to Word, except to wonder if you've tried saving
from Frame as an RTF?

Try to be objective about marketing chick. Be cool, polite, professional,
and helpful. Contribute to the overall success of the company and make sure
everyone knows it. It sounds like she's going to give you an ulcer
otherwise, and letting a personality conflict flare into something that
managers have to deal with is not something you want to do.

Lisa Wright

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