RE: Another question to ponder

Subject: RE: Another question to ponder
From: "diotima" <diotima -at- myway -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Sat, 16 Oct 2004 00:19:47 -0400 (EDT)

james, i love this question! it's a fascinating topic and i'm glad you took the time to express it. i look forward to the responses it generates.

for those of us who can't quite identify with this issue specifically, i imagine most of us could nevertheless find some identification by thinking of the issue broader terms: that is, to think of the issue in terms of alienation in the workplace. age, race, class, gender, orientation, education...

thanks for posing this question, james.


james wrote:

Date: Fri, 15 Oct 2004 08:08:35 -0700

From: James Barrow <vrfour -at- earthlink -dot- net>

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To: TECHWR-L <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>

Subject: Another question to ponder

Okay, this question may not come out right, but it's a serious


Has anyone's age been a factor on a tech writing assignment?

My motivation behind asking this question own advancing

age:^) I've been a technical writer for 11 years. I started doing

this when I was 31 (you do the math.) When I first started out, it

seemed that I could work and socialize with just about everyone

assigned to the project (developers, upper-management, etc.) I look

younger than my age and I'm fairly well-rounded, so I can keep up with

just about any topic of conversation.

I'm currently working on a project where most of the development team

is in their early to mid-twenties. Upper management doesn't look a day

older than I do. So here's my dilemma: I feel like I'm 'in-between.'

I've gone out to lunch with the 'cool group', and feel as if I'm

chaperoning a senior prom. I identify more with upper management but,

and let's be serious here, there are caste lines drawn between staff

and upper management, so asking a VP to go to lunch is not really an


Anyone else ever have a similar situation? I know that I am only there

to work, but interacting with coworkers (outside of work related

things) is inevitable. What is the next rung on the ladder for tech

writers? Is there any management positions open to tech writers in

general besides supervising a team of writers? In the future, I'm

wondering if I'm going to be able to handle being a 62 year old tech

writer going to lunch with engineers thirty years my junior:^)

Like I said, weird question, difficult to express, but serious...for me

at least.

- Jim

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