Re: Subject Matter Expertise-YES!

Subject: Re: Subject Matter Expertise-YES!
From: GeneK <gene -at- genek -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 27 Feb 2003 14:05:57 -0800


No, except maybe for "unexpectedly." Just about every position I've had
I've spent about 50% of my writing time on subjects I was well steeped in
and the rest on ones that were utterly alien to me at first. I've never been
with a company that could afford to have writing specialists in programming,
physics, chemistry, biology, etc. *and* have those specialists work only in
their areas of expertise. As a writer I've had to run off to a corner somewhere
with "Introduction to..." handbooks, sign up for whatever internal training was
available or just corner SME's and say "they've given me a week to learn enough
about what you do to get this document done before the beta ships," and as a
manager I've had more than a few occaisions when it was "John/Mary will be
done with the API handbook Monday, we'll put him/her on the service manual
because there's nobody else available."

Sure, in an ideal pubs group every writer would be an SME or close for whatever
doc he or she was working on, but I've never had the luxury of being in one of
those, even when I was the person managing it.

Gene Kim-Eng



At 02:46 PM 2/27/2003 -0700, kcronin -at- daleen -dot- com wrote:

I'm talking about being asked to change hats
unexpectedly, or at least add hats to my wardrobe. It's happened in every
tech writing job I've had. Is it just me?



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