Re: environment

Subject: Re: environment
From: Al Geist <al -dot- geist -at- geistassociates -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 31 Jul 2003 19:44:36 -0800

I've been busy finishing a contract and preparing to move out of Alaska, so pardon me while I catch up.

On the subject of being nosy--If it's a communal printer and I happen to see something pertaining to my current task laying in the tray, then I always give it a quick glance. However, I don't dumpster dive for data. I don't have cubicle is between the SMEs on one side and the Section Chief on the other. I learned about a new release of the application I'm documenting from an impromptu meeting between two SMEs. I also learned that the budget for contractors was slashed with some contracting positions (including the lone writer) being either shifted from full time to part time, or eliminated. Since I had a hunch this was going to happen, (the budget deficits are tricking down and I work for a government agency) I had already prepared a proposal to do most of the writing from my home office. Overhearing that conversation helped me tune the proposal and deliver it before any personnel adjustment announcements were made.

Environment--My first writing job (in Benicia, CA) had me positioned between HR and the software engineering group. I learned early how to tune things out. That ability was further enhanced when I worked as a freelance business reporter/magazine editor in Fairbanks, Alaska while raising two kids as a single parent. I can write with a marching band practicing outside my cubicle and I often bang the keys while listening to good old rock and roll. I have also edited technical material and written magazine articles while camping in the middle of the Interior wilderness. (My motto is never miss a deadline, but that doesn't mean you can't enjoy life.) I tend to agree with Karen Zorn that the biggest problem I have concentrating is not from the noise, but from the aroma of the Orville Redenbacker Kettle Korn that floats through the cubicles every afternoon around 4 p.m. Good thing nobody is around to help me eat it.


Al Geist, Geist Associates
From Concept to Completion
Technical Writing, Publishing, Video, Web Design, Graphic Arts
Voice 907-317-3194 Fax 907-622-2321 al -dot- geist -at- geistassociates -dot- com <mailto:al -dot- geist -at- geistassociates -dot- com>
"When the situation is absolutely hopeless, you have nothing to worry about."
Compliments of The Monkey Wrench Gang


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RE: environment: From: Karen Zorn

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