RE: DAWG (Formerly Who dreams up these things?)

Subject: RE: DAWG (Formerly Who dreams up these things?)
From: Shari Scott <SScott -at- ComplexImaging -dot- com>
To: TECHWR-L <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 29 Sep 1999 11:45:44 -0500

Tony, were you describing the company I work for? Amazing that your
post came when it did. I am trying to document a new release where every
time I run a new install (a few times a day), there are new buttons,
features, etc. It's gotten to the point where it is even driving the
programmers nuts. The new features are coming from the president. And the
documentation deadline was set without ever asking my input. Add to that I
am leaving in a week and a half (I've had enough of the Minnesota winters
and am relocating to Austin, TX) and I have a DAWG mess on my hands.

I think Andrew, Tony, and others have made valid points. Do I have a written
process (not counting style sheets, checklists)? No. Do I follow a process?
Absolutely. Even being the lone technical writer, I follow a process albeit
in my head.

As there are more and more small software companies springing up that sound
exactly like what Tony explained, I think the question becomes how can we,
as technical writers (or information developers, or documenationists,
or...), develop a process that works for us and be flexible enough to take
into account DAWG mentality. Yes, it is a personal thing. I don't think
there can be one process or model that works for everyone in all situations
in all companies. One of the things that I love about being in a small
company is not having to have 3 conference calls and 5 meetings before a
decision can be made (been there, done that). But that also means that if I
am not in the right place at the right time, I may not know something I need
to know. But there has to be a balance between the two.

This isn't meant to start a technical writer vs. programmer debate. In my
case, it isn't coming from the programmers. They are actually apologizing to
me!

Shari Scott Gray




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