Re: Managing Engineers (long)

Subject: Re: Managing Engineers (long)
From: anna fowler <anna_fowler1 -at- excite -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 27 Nov 2000 11:30:53 -0800 (PST)

I agree that knowledge of the subject that you are writing on is important
to be a successful tech writer, but how would someone chose which knowledge
to obtain?

I used to work for an eletrical engineering firm and I had to write
instruction sheets on how to install dimmers. I have never taken an
electrical engineering class and I did not have a problem writing the sheets
at all. Why? Because the audience I was writing for was in the same boat.
Therefore I would ask the enginners for a brief explanation on how to do it
and then do the installation myself, then write the instructions. Not only
did we have less returns on these products as soon as a non-electrician
starting writing the instruction sheets, the engineers loved telling me how
their product worked.

I do have knowledge on computers and some computer languages. I now write
for a software company and I must say that having this prior knowledge has
helped me to no end. So I think that having a grasp on what you are writing
about is important to a degree. But knowledge of the end user is more
important in my opinion.

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