Re: "Who is a Technical Writer?"

Subject: Re: "Who is a Technical Writer?"
From: Chris Morton <salt -dot- morton -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: "techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 25 May 2018 08:57:39 -0400

As Clyde Crashcup would have informed Leonardo (
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QYVvncIyEQ0):

"Horse" as in *horse*, "pookey" as in *pookey*.

First, the au can't write. Most every piece I've ever read that begins
"According to *x* dictionary, *y* is defined as..." immediately informs me
that the writer doesn't really have anything to say. Or they might, but
it's recessed so far in the muddled cranium that their thoughts haven't
really begun to gel into something semi-cohesive. But heyâit's deadline 'n'
all, so better get something down.

The AU is either ESL or didn't bother to profread. ð Witness: " Itâs
suggested that reader can find, understand, and use a document."
Even with an "a" or a "the" preceding "reader," my response to that
statement is, "No sh^t, Sherlock."

But will any doc actually be read? Consider the medical device IFU, where
lower level hospital admins promptly lock all documentation away in a
cabinet for safekeepingânot that Dr. Ima Bigshot needs to refer to a
stinkin' manual. Shades of RTFM.


A college degree is required? Maybe today. But I've been doing this for 25+
years and ain't got no diploma hangin' on my wall.

A good part of that stems from too many textbooks having been poorly
written, coupled with my overall disdain of same. Plus, it was the '60s
{which I DO remember, thanks}. The last security course I started to take
required us to read several NIST documents; obviously several PhD authors
are oblivious to the Plain Writing Act of 2010. Some thought using
justified textâwithout appropriate spacing manipulationâsomehow made their
work more, *uh*, *important*. Cue Calvin & Hobbes:
https://aruneo.wordpress.com/2009/02/25/academia-here-i-come/


Finally, there is that sage advice from Van Morrison, Technical Writer Par
Excellence (where Webster's defines that as "being the best of a kind :
preeminent. a chef *par excellence**):*


* You gotta fight every day to keep mediocrity at bay *

Chris Morton
(click logo â for details)

<https://www.the-efa.org/memberinfo/chris-morton-10670/>
â Substantive Editing â Technical Writing â Proofreading
â B2B/B2C â Marketing Expertise â Mentoring



On Fri, May 25, 2018 at 8:12 AM, Peter Neilson <neilson -at- windstream -dot- net>
wrote:

> Useless?
>
> On Fri, 25 May 2018 08:06:46 -0400, Cardimon, Craig <ccardimon -at- m-s-g -dot- com>
> wrote:
>
> For your reading pleasure:
>>
>> https://medium.com/@kesiparker/who-is-a-technical-writer-7e6e02f22b10
>>
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References:
"Who is a Technical Writer?": From: Cardimon, Craig
Re: "Who is a Technical Writer?": From: Peter Neilson

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