Re: Manual 101

Subject: Re: Manual 101
From: Jane Bergen <janeb -at- ANSWERSOFT -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 26 Feb 1997 11:55:47 +0000

At 07:48 AM 2/26/97 -0700, someone said:
>>>What I'm looking for is a book or list of Design 101 tips, like a
>>>one-day class on the subject, so I don't have to spend too much
>>>time researching the details. (I will refine and improve the

As a matter of fact, there IS a "Desktop Publishing for Dummies" book,
written by Roger Parker, who is well-known. This is one of the bright
yellow "Dummies" series. It's actually a very good book and I've used
it (along with many others!) in preparing my desktop publishing
classes. I've seen very few, however, that would apply specifically to
technical manuals. It would be difficult to find a one-fits-all for
that...or even a few-fits-all.

One thing I find helpful is keeping a three ring binder of photocopied
pages from manuals that I "like" -- for inspiration. It also helps
when you have to sell your ideas to someone... I just walked around
our building and looked at various software manuals from other
software and copied pertinent pages (usually no more than one or two
from any single source). I made sure to write down the name of the
manual in case I ever wanted to chase it down again. Eventually you'll
develop your own templates, style sheets, etc. but if you can afford
to play a little before you set anything in stone, you'll be happier
with the results.

Good luck,

"my opinions are my own..."
Jane Bergen, Technical Writer
janeb -at- answersoft -dot- com
AnswerSoft, Inc. Dallas, TX

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