Re: Career change to tech writing

Subject: Re: Career change to tech writing
From: John Garison <john -at- garisons -dot- com>
To: Dana Worley <dana -at- campbellsci -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 27 Jul 2006 12:33:01 -0400

I have to pretty much echo what Dana says, with maybe a little caveat and a war story.

I have taught tech writing for over 15 years, and I do think that a little bit if training can go a long way. Not to dislocate my shoulder while patting myself on the back, but I've had two separate instances where former students of mine have come up to me and said that they took my Intro to Tech Writing course and have been working as writers ever since. It was a 14-week course, based on real world issues and approaches, and taught people what writers really have to do, what it's like to do it in the environment they'll face, and what skills and aptitudes they'll need to succeed. So, if you can find a course like that, take it.

OTOH, don't put an impediment in your way that doesn't really exist. Put yourself out there and look for work as a writer. If the first two dozen interviews all tell you that you need some sort of training before they'll consider you (despite you showing them you have the skills and some practical experience already), then take the message and go get the training. If not, then keep at it until you find someone that will hire you.

My 2¢,


Dana Worley wrote:

Forget the certificate and start marketing yourself as a technical writer.


Soo.... long story short.... you have a background in presenting information. You have demonstrated your ability to write and edit. I think you should go for it :)


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Re: Career change to tech writing: From: Dana Worley

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