Re: more #$ -at- %#^&$# secretary stuff...

Subject: Re: more #$ -at- %#^&$# secretary stuff...
From: George Mena <George -dot- Mena -at- ESSTECH -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 12 May 1998 13:54:08 -0700

Dear Elna Tymes,

Since the RIF, I've been contracting the last two years and am making
twice as much money as I did from the days I was working for my last
permanent employer. While the money's very good, I also know it's not
enough, nor does contracting really help promote the sense of inner
stability I strive to foster within myself. I like working with
positive, warmhearted and hard-working professionals. The good people I
left behind were that and a lot more. And I miss them.

I don't consider the extra things I did acts of depreciation because if
I didn't like the people I did them for, I wouldn't have done them at
all. That's a large part of the equation I think maybe you didn't see.

One day, I hope to have my own tech writing business instead of having
to rely on contracting through agencies. I've got a lot of work ahead
of me before I feel comfortable enough to strike out on my own. I hold
no grudge against you for having your own company; you're where I want
to be at one day. As far as the charities go, I may go that route one
day when I'm older and can afford to do it full time. Being a San
Francisco resident, I've seen the dark side of life in places like the
Tenderloin and I've seen the 'Loin rip the heart and soul out of someone
I once loved. It still hurts like Hell when I think about her, but I've
also found my perspective. Suffice it to say I know which charities to
go offer my services to, should I ever find tech writing work in the
city I live in one day. And I do want to find tech writing work in San
Francisco eventually.

In closing, may you always find your own happiness in doing the task for
the sake of doing the task. When you do what you love, the money will
follow -- or so that's what the book by the same name promotes.


PS to Eric Ray: I'm trying to stay on topic here. =D Hope I did that
for you today.

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Elna Tymes [SMTP:etymes -at- LTS -dot- COM]
> Sent: Tuesday, May 12, 1998 12:00 PM
> To: TECHWR-L -at- LISTSERV -dot- OKSTATE -dot- EDU
> Subject: Re: more #$ -at- %#^&$# secretary stuff...
> George-
> > Since then, I've run into some people who say that that's too much
> for
> > one tech writer to take on and that "it's not my job." I have a
> real
> > problem with people like that. When you're the *only* tech writer
> > on-site as I was there, people will seek you out as a potential
> solution
> > to the unique problems they need solved. Why not give of yourself?
> > Only good can come of it. =D
> Because we're not in the business of "giving of ourselves." We're
> working to make money, among other things. If you want to give of
> yourself, I can think of dozens of charities who can use you.
> George, unlike you apparently, I don't work for free. And my rates
> are
> high. If my client company wants to pay my hourly rate for taking
> notes
> and making copies, fine. I make sure they realize that's what they're
> doing, in non-threatening ways. (Most of the time I kinda smile and
> say
> "You're paying me by the hour. I'll be glad to help out, but are you
> sure you want to spend the company money that way?") Most of them
> realize that it's not cost-effective to use my time that way, and get
> someone who costs less to do those kinds of tasks.
> Btw, this is one illustration why contracting is more rewarding (for
> me)
> than working captive. If you're captive, in my experience, you're
> more
> likely to run into little acts of deprecation like this that get
> passed
> off as being "part of the team." You're less likely to get that as a
> contractor simply because everybody knows you're billing by the hour.
> Elna Tymes
> Los Trancos Systems
> &^~~~
> Send commands to listserv -at- listserv -dot- okstate -dot- edu (e.g., SIGNOFF
> Find contractor info at

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