re: Outlook for the future

Subject: re: Outlook for the future
From: holmegm -at- attbi -dot- com
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 05 Feb 2003 13:22:42 +0000

"Caldwell, Shannon" <Shannon -dot- Caldwell -at- earthtech -dot- ca> wrote:

>I am new to the Technical Writing field and have a
>question to pose.


>What do you see as the outlook for the Technical Writing
>field in general.

Under the name "tech writing"? Kind of bleak.

>I have 5 years of experience in Systems Administration

Good. The technical part is becoming much more

>and really got burned out on it.

Hmm. You'll still need to investigate how complex things
work and what can go wrong with them. You'll need to
break complex tasks down to their component parts.
Depending on what aspects you got burned out in, tech
writing may or may not be an escape ...

>My interest lies in Technical Writing and am
>taking classes, learning RoboHelp and other graphic
>programs, joined STC, and doing everything I can to
>absorb information.

While those things aren't bad, they sound almost like
an Andrew straw man being set up. While tool knowledge
is good, tools can be learned quickly. I'd recommend
learning no more than one tool of each type, to start,
to avoid wasting your time. I would trust that someone
familiar with RoboHelp could pick up (some other HAT)
quickly enough, for example.

>I am hoping that I am making a good
>career transition. I see ads on Monster for salaries in
>the 20Ks and get a little nervous.

I don't think higher salary bands necessarily get
advertised ... usually a mid-level to senior position
will not list a salary, and you need to negotiate it (well,
you should always negotiate, but you get the gist).

Greg Holmes


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