Re: Burnout?

Subject: Re: Burnout?
From: Becca Price <becca_price -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Sat, 10 Feb 2001 16:19:29 -0800 (PST)

The folks who recommended that you take a vacation are right -
it sounds like you really need one.

> To those of you who are long-time technical writers, is this
> common? Is it
> a passing phase or did I pick the wrong profession?

yeah, you might have picked the wrong profession... on the other
hand, sometimes even after 20(murfle) years in the profession, I
still love it - and I still get depressed sometimes, thinking of
how meaningless most of my work is...maybe 99% of the people who
should read my manuals don't... so I write it for the one
percent who does.

It also helps to get a job where you care about what you're
documenting. I've had a number of positions where I was
churning out stuff "because our boss says we have to have
documentation" on topics I really didn't care a flying flip
about - in the Great Scheme of Things, it really didn't matter
what I wrote. I could have created topic after topic of help
files saying "mashed potatos and gravy" over and over again, and
it would have been as meaningful as all my careful procedures.

I've had one or two (including the one I currently have) where
documentation was *important* - people could get badly injured
or killed if my writing was sloppy. Or other, less bloody but
intellectually as disasterous events could happen.

Ask yourself - is it the work you don't like, or the topic on
which you're writing?

and ... hang in there, Surfer. It gets better.


Becca Price
beccap -at- rust -dot- net (primary address)

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