Re: Techie First or Writer? -Reply

Subject: Re: Techie First or Writer? -Reply
From: David Demyan <dbdemyan -at- WORLDNET -dot- ATT -dot- NET>
Date: Fri, 11 Oct 1996 13:27:13 +0000

Melissa wrote:
--snip--
>someone who can work as a productive technical writer. I have rarely
>read an ad for a truck driver that says "must have 2-5 years experience
>with Mack trucks delivering frozen foods." Instead, employers of truck
>drivers usually want someone that knows the basics and can learn the
>specifics.
--snip--
Melissa: I respectfully beg to differ. Surely you realize the difference
between truck drivers, varieties of trucks, and the types of deliveries
they make and what we are called on to do? A Mack operates very similarly
to a Peterbuilt; the validity of your argument only extends to operator
preferences. As truck drivers tend to prefer one model over another
(P-built owners are fiercely proud of their vehicles), we tend to
develop preferences (some times adamant) for one software tool or
another.

But I will *not* agree that using a two-font IBM Selectric to produce
typewritten text on paper is very similar to using Framemaker 5.1.1
to produce near-multimedia technical communications events to be
delivered via paper, CD-ROM, and Internet.

As one who writes those sometimes very specific lists of employee
requirements (recruiting for contract technical writers), I reserve
the right to get as specific as my clients need me to be, filtering
my decisions about what to include in the list with my knowledge and
experience in our tradecraft. These clients will not use my firm
again if they expect the latest tools and I deliver someone with
very basic skills.

>I again propose that the employers don't really understand what
>technical writers do.

Perhaps employers produce those long lists because they know (at
least in my case I assure you it is so) *exactly* what is required
to get the job done and wind up with a satisfied employee and
client.

Regards,
......................................................................
David B. Demyan Mendem Concord, Inc.
Toll Free: (888) 753-8500 Technical Writers
FAX: (908) 756-0129 Document Conversions
dbd -at- mendem -dot- com http://www.mendem.com
......................................................................


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