Re: 'author' vs. 'write'

Subject: Re: 'author' vs. 'write'
From: Jim Purcell <jimpur -at- MICROSOFT -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 28 May 1997 09:43:16 -0700

Mary Howe asks:

> What is the difference between the verbs 'to author' and 'to write'?
> I've never used 'author' myself because I just thought it was a social
> dialect variation (like 'home' and 'house', 'drapes' and 'curtains',
> 'frosting' and 'icing', etc.).
> I'm posting this here because 'to author' appears to have a special
> meaning to technical writers. If this turns into a discussion of the
> connotations/dialect differences among all the words above, let's take
> it to copyediting-l.
I have always heard "authoring tools" used to describe not word
processors, but tools for creating Web sites, CBT, multimedia
presentations, and such like. I suppose there is a useful distinction
between this kind of work and applying words to paper in the usual way,
especially for companies that make authoring software. I have no idea,
though, why author-as-verb was selected for the purpose.

Jim Purcell
jimpur -at- microsoft -dot- com
My opinions, not Microsoft's

TECHWR-L (Technical Communication) List Information: To send a message
to 2500+ readers, e-mail to TECHWR-L -at- LISTSERV -dot- OKSTATE -dot- EDU -dot- Send commands
Search the archives at or search and
browse the archives at

Previous by Author: Re: Temping: An alternative to agencies?
Next by Author: Re: 'author' vs. 'write'
Previous by Thread: Re: 'author' vs. 'write'
Next by Thread: Re: 'author' vs. 'write'

What this post helpful? Share it with friends and colleagues:

Sponsored Ads