Re: Non-technical, Technical Writers

Subject: Re: Non-technical, Technical Writers
From: "Tony G. Rocco" <trocco -at- NAVIS -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 6 May 1998 10:22:16 -0800

Funny, I was thinking about this issue just today. There is a certain irony
to being a technical writer for many of us: we are technical writers
because we are NOT technical people. Sounds strange, but if programming in
C and Java and knowing the intricacies of networking were our first loves,
we'd be engineers and programmers. But writing and editing are our first
loves, so we're technical writers, not technical people.

Why be a technical writer and not a poet, novelist, or journalist, then?
The answer is green, as in the color of money. In an ideal world, I'd
probably be one of the above rather than a tech writer. But the world ain't

My goal in life, professionally speaking, has always been to support myself
*well* working as a writer. Tech writing is the only way I have found to do
this. Journalism and publishing, both of which I have tried, don't pay
adequately. Advertising copywriting is sleazy. Tech writing pays and it's
ethical and actually helps people.

I will always think of myself as a writer and editor first, and anything
else second. I will earn my living worrying primarily about bullets and
style sheets as long as I can.

Others feel the same?

- tgr

At 10:30 PM -0700 5/5/98, Andrew Plato wrote:

> I have an issue for everyone to ponder.
> ?It seems like there is a glut of writers who can discern the minute
> intricacies of bullet shapes and alignment proportions, but they can't deal
> with anything remotely technical.?


Writing is like prostitution. First you do it for
the love of it, then you do it for a few friends,
and finally, you do it for the money.


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