Re: Award winning writer seeks help breaking into technical writing

Subject: Re: Award winning writer seeks help breaking into technical writing
From: "Nina L. Panzica" <panin -at- MINDSPRING -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 21 Aug 1997 09:57:33 -0500

At 02:12 PM 8/20/97 +1600, you wrote:
>Dear Technical Writers,
>Please pardon this one time post. I value your informative
>messages and humbly request your assistance.

Posting a resume to a list of your competitors (other writers) is probably
not the very best way to get a job. On the other hand, there are probably
some writers who have their own businesses and who hire or subcontract to
other technical writers here, so you may get a few nibbles from them.

I have a few suggestions for you:

1. Post your resume on as many hi-tech online resume banks as you can.
Three very popular resume banks are,, and You will get calls from interested people if you post
there. Be as specific as you can about where you're willing to relocate or
travel to for a job. To find additional resume banks, simply start with one
of the sites listed above and visit its links page. There is also a very
extensive table of resume banks listed on The Riley Guide employment site:

Start at the above URL, dig a little, and you'll find it.

2. If you intend to do freelance or contract work, I will be glad to list
your Web page in my links to other writers. See the instructions on my Web

3. Network. That's how many of us find our jobs. Join your local STC
(Society for Technical Communication) chapter and find out what employment
resources they have for members (many chapters maintain a job bank or a
freelane talent pool--another place to post your resume). Read this mailing
list carefully, and search its archives Web site for topics (like
employment) that you need information on. Networking also gives you the
information you need to succed in this career. You find out from other
writers what sort of software tools most employers of technical writers
expect you to know how to use, how to present your skills in a resume, what
to charge for your services, what to expect from and how to negoitiate with
consulting agencies, etc. Also, through networking you start to meet those
writers who run their own documentation houses and who hire other writers
to help them with their work.

4. I maintain a large list of resource link for techncial writers--many of
which are employment-related--on my site. Go to:

As you visit these links, think carefully about what's there and ask
yourself, "how could the information on this site help me to find a job?"
For example, one of my links goes to that large list of freelance technical
writers on the Yahoo! search engine. There are a number of things you can
do with a list like that. First, you can submit your URL to that Yahoo!
page so that you are listed there too. But your work shouldn't stop there.
You should also carefully read the descriptions of the other writers listed
there, and, if they seem like the type who might be subcontracting to or
hiring other writers, you should visit their Web sites and then write them
about possible contracts.

A second example: one of my links goes to the main STC Web site. That page
is a jumping off point to all sorts of free resources for technical
writers, but you have to dig a little in this enormous site to find the
employment and informational gems in it. Hint: visit _all_ the chapter
pages, not just the ones in your area.

Hope this helps,
Nina P.
Senior Member, STC Atlanta Chapter

Nina Panzica
Masterpiece Media
(404) 237-7889
Can't reach me at the above number? Try my pager: 404-596-7889
mailto:panin -at- mindspring -dot- com

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