RE: Who dreams up these things?

Subject: RE: Who dreams up these things?
From: "Timmerman, Donald" <DTimmerman -at- ipdexch -dot- ipd -dot- anl -dot- gov>
To: TECHWR-L <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 28 Sep 1999 15:51:55 -0500

Andrew says, "When I write a manual here is what I do:

1. Fiddle with the product.
2. Blab with the engineers.
3. Read materials from similar products.
4. Wander around thinking.
5. Pet the cat
6. Jam a pencil in my ear.
7. Eat some Bean with Bacon soup.
8. Plant my ass in a chair.
9. Bang out a doc.
10. Curse at FrameMaker.
11. File | Print
12. Submit it for review.
13. Wash the car.

In other words - I have absolutely no process."


I knew you use a process. If you don't call those 13 steps a process, what
do you call it? I'll also bet it's the same or very similar process that
many of us (me included) use. Of course, my process differs from yours
between steps 5 and 7. I also don't wash the car when I'm finished (step
13). Probably the most important single step in your process is step 4,
which is in itself is a very complicated and elaborate process. I've met
too many technical writers who skip step 4. My point is, we all use a
process or methodology to do our work whether we develop our own or use one
created by someone else.

Don Timmerman
Sr. Tech. Writer
Argonne National Laboratory
Argonne, IL (near Chicago)

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