Re: Managing Help Files

Subject: Re: Managing Help Files
From: Buck & Tilly Buchanan <writer -at- DHC -dot- NET>
Date: Sat, 12 Apr 1997 07:58:18 -0500

Everyone has had problems with a management which doesn't understand
requirements of tech pubs.

My own experience was with a company where one person (a graphic artist)
had been the documentation department. I was told that I would be THE
Tech Writer and in charge of pubs format. She would be THE Graphic

She later decided that parts lists should be in the front matter and
there would be a chapter zero in the books.

I explained rule number one about tech manuals: Front Matter consists
of information about THE BOOK and about THE COMPANY. And that a chapter
zero caused all kinds of problems with formatting (requiring manual
numbering in some cases). Management, after listening to her illogical
arguments, ruled in her favor.

Recognizing the script on the wall, at week's end I had accepted
another, better, more lucrative contract and submitted my resignation
effective immediately.

It's an employee's market in Dallas right now, and at another place and
another time I might have swallowed my pride and still be there.

If you eat alone, there's no one there to do the heimlich!

Buck Buchanan
writer -at- dhc -dot- net
Arlington, TX

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