Re: Out of Work Tech Writers

Subject: Re: Out of Work Tech Writers
From: Glen Warner <gdwarner -at- mindspring -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 21 Jun 2002 13:02:56 -0700

"McCarter, Kim" <kmccarte -at- harris -dot- com> wrote:


> What I need is a fresh opinion - someone who will
> look at the same words and see what I have not.
> Does it hurt my feelings? Occasionally.
> But you know what? I get over that and move on, and produce a better
> product.

On my last contract of any length (ah, the good ol' days ...), my
project manager went over my rough draft with red pen in hand --
which, sad to say, was quite busy on this particular draft. At one
point, she looked up at me, an apologetic look in her eyes, and said
something along the lines of "Please don't take this personally."

This surprised me. Even though I was green as the freshly mown grass
(my neighbor's grass; my grass is ... well, nevermind), I knew the
process: I write, she (or someone) critiques, and I fix ... then we do
it again.

I told her not to worry; if her changes would make the document
better, then I'm all for them! She smiled, and got back to work with
that red pen. :o\

The final outcome? A manual which the company's CEO praised, a copy
of which now sits on a coffee table in the reception area, as an
example of the types of documents that company produces (my former PM
called me and told me this).

> Imagine how inferior a product I would produce if everyone patted my
hand and
> said, "That's nice," or if I filtered out the feedback from people
who were
> critical.

My point exactly ...!

> If you publish your words, products, etc to others, be prepared for
> you don't agree with. If you don't want constructive criticism,
talk to your
> pet.

Hmmmm ... see the .sig.
> These are my opinions, not those of my employer.
> ______________________________________
> Kim McCarter


"If cats could talk, they'd remind us that their ancestors ate ours."

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