Content journey: from technical to marketing and social media

Most technical communicators I know can be divided into 2 types.

There are the ones who love creating general About/Welcome sections in their docs and get off on illustrating workflows, business value, etc.

And then, the ones who need a whole cake and then some to coax themselves into writing overviews and designing diagrams. It’s much easier for this type to write instructions about tangible, down-to-earth, even techy stuff.

My friend Viktoria Bezsmolna is the definitive type 1. Still, this free-spirited girl landed in our InfoDev department. But soon enough, she eloped to marketing. And then to PR. Now, she is a freelance writer and has her own blog – yay!

I finally decided to get to the bottom of how this journey worked out for her.

Our 1,5-hour interview was very thought-provoking, and here’s how it all summed up in my head.

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Diagram Series: Pitfalls of interviews with SMEs

Look at the following broken-line graph (Figure #1). How much time do you need to create one? 5 – 10 minutes? How about two days?

Figure #1 (Click to enlarge)

Now, if I provide an estimate of two days for creating a graph, my Customer will expect to receive a 3D visualization, in color. Then, where is the problem? Why creating a graph with a few broken lines might take that much time?

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Effectiveness as a habit

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey. Book Review.

In the last decades, motivation literature has flourished to an unprecedented extent. This is a cultural phenomenon that cannot be missed: people have become interested in self-development, constant improvement, and success. “Ah, yes, success…”— you may sneer skeptically just as I did when I first saw the name of the book. Yet, behind the mainstream title, I found deep thoughts that are applicable in my life journey.

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Hero in you, or how to make your text easier to read

Most of us think that movies and comics are the only places where real heroes dwell. We believe that these mysterious guys just come from nowhere to save the day, and then disappear till the next time when everything goes completely wrong.

But that is not how it actually works. Real heroes surround us, and we meet them every day while commuting, working, or even drinking tea at the nearby restaurant.

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The Future of Content Publishing or What I’ve Learned at the Evolution of TC

This year I had a marvelous opportunity to attend the Evolution of TC conference in Sofia, Bulgaria. It is an annual international event for all technical communicators with a focus on innovations in software documentation. Being a place for technical writers, information developers, translators, and everyone who is interested in technical communication, it gives an excellent opportunity to exchange knowledge and ideas, learn new tendencies and trends, as well as grow network. Continue reading

How ETC 2017 Showed me that TechComm Rocks!

Technical writers are first of all writers. They are constantly searching for the Castalian Spring trying to fill the Grail of their thirsty mind and soul with the wine of inspiration. That is the gift and that is the curse of the creative people. Sometimes the routine tasks, lack of support, or the technical and communication gaps demotivate the technical writers, and they start wandering around looking for the silver lining. I experienced the fall of enthusiasm but I found the right path to the Muses. It was a long road to Sofia, Bulgaria, where the ETC conference returned me my faith in TechComm.

Check how great ETC was: Evolution of TC

How did the 2-days event inspire me like a million of motivating books? Follow me in my stirring travel and get your portion of ETC: encouragement, talent, and creativity! Continue reading