So, today’s Armchair BEA topic is moving beyond the blog (and the books) and so I wanted to focus on a relatively new development in my life, my employment as a tech writer.
If you’ve followed my blog and/or my Twitter account then it’s really no secret that I’m a bit of a tech nerd. I was practically raised on Apple products and I spent five years working for them in a retail store managing inventory and creating training materials for our new employees. While doing that I was also getting my bachelor’s degree in English and then a master’s degree in Library Media and technology (seemed a good meld of books and tech).
As a result I’m a rare breed, someone who is a proficient writer, but also has a deep understanding of the tech world in all it’s intricacies. In talking to some friends of mine about how frustrated I was with working retail and its terrible hours someone suggested that I look into tech writing. I seriously think I owe whoever told me that a cupcake as it was some of the best advice I’ve been given.
I now work for an awesome email company here in Atlanta as a technical writer. My day-to-day job entails writing articles for our customer facing knowledge base, creating training documentation for new and existing employees, creating copy for internal communications, sending out internal newsletters and a lot more. I work closely with the developers to make sure that the information is technically sound and works in a logical way, yet is also clear and easy enough for a very basic user to comprehend.
As a tech writer not only do I need to beware of the style and grammar in my writing, but I also need to have a working knowledge with basic HTML to format the posts for the web. Thankfully I was already prepared for this by having a pretty good graph on HTML, but I’ve definitely worked to improve it since taking on this role.
Being a tech writer is a fantastic job and I’m so lucky that I get to go to work every day to do a job that I love.
If you’re interested in Tech Writing there are a ton of great resources out there! Here are a few I’ve found to be useful/helpful.
Handbook of Technical Writing, Tenth Edition by Gerald J. Alred
The Elements of Technical Writing by Gary Blake
Technical Writing 101: A Real-World Guide to Planning and Writing Technical Content by Alan S. Pringle
And if you ever have need of a tech writer, I’m available for freelance jobs! 😉
I’m excited to see what everyone else does outside of the blogging world! I’d assumed most bloggers were also writers or involved in the literary world in some fashion, but I’ve come to learn this is not the case. We’re a very unique and diverse bunch and I think that makes us special. 🙂