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How Do you Become a Technical Writer?
Old 08-03-2007, 10:49 AM   #1
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How Do you Become a Technical Writer?

Just curious, is anyone on here a technical writer? What training is needed?
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Old 08-03-2007, 11:03 AM   #2
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I work at a technical place (NASA) and know a bunch of technical writers. The key is the writing part. Fresh out of college writing & journalism would be good, recently saw a gal hired with a degree in anthropology. Its good to understand the technical side a bit but its not like a patent lawyer where you need to be fully up to speed. The key is taking the info and presenting it in a way that non technical (or less technical) people can follow it. And one other thing, meeting schedules!
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Old 08-03-2007, 11:31 AM   #3
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Once when I was having trouble getting programming/consulting jobs I took a technical writing job writing a manual for a high-end video editing device. I think they hired me mainly because of my technical knowledge, because they didn't know much about my writing. I was referred by someone I had worked with before.

My point is that in some cases the technical skills might be what get you the job, though I'm guessing that's unusual.
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Old 08-03-2007, 01:20 PM   #4
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My megacorp usually hires technical writers under the Business System Analyst label. We need people who can understand the process and write about it. We look for both business and English degrees. The last person we hired had a masters in History but had done requirements gathering before.
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Old 08-03-2007, 01:24 PM   #5
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yes I am a technical writer. One way to get here is be a technical instructor for 8 years, then change career paths. I am an engineer by degree, CAD Instructor by experience.
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Old 08-03-2007, 03:06 PM   #6
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"I work at a technical place (NASA)...."

NASA....

Hey... be careful at Happy Hour.
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Old 08-03-2007, 03:53 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joss View Post
"I work at a technical place (NASA)...."

NASA....

Hey... be careful at Happy Hour.
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Old 08-03-2007, 05:12 PM   #8
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Why would anyone want to be a technical writer?? They're the first to GO ... my mega corg laid off the entire department in the early 90's and told the engineers to step it up. Much easier to be a techincal writer with a technical background.
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