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10/23 Intermountain STC Meeting: An Informal Discussion of Any Tech Comm Challenges You're Facing

by Tom Johnson on Oct 23, 2008
categories: technical-writing

Date: Thursday, 10/23
Time: 6:30 – 8:00 p.m.
Location: Salt Lake City Downtown Library
Room: Conference Room 2, Second Floor
Cost: Free

Downtown Salt Lake City Library
Downtown Salt Lake City Library

I'm putting together an STC-Intermountain tonight, from 6:30 – 8:00 p.m. at the Downtown SLC Library – second floor, conference room 2. The meeting is titled, "An Informal Discussion of Any Tech Comm Challenges You're Facing."

In this meeting, you can discuss the problems you're struggling with, the issues or concerns you have — and hear solutions and advice from other professionals who may have good answers.

Here are a few of the possible challenges we may discuss:

  • Editing SME-written articles (for publications such as corporate websites or newsletters) without upsetting the SME with required changes.
  • Convincing developers and designers of the value of help, without having to make the case over and over.
  • Assessing whether Web 2.0 strategies and other new technologies (such as wikis) are right for you.
  • Staying employed in this time of economic turmoil.
  • Finding ways to expand your team's headcount and market your deliverables to departments who generally overlook you.
  • Accommodating new documentation requirements mid-way through the project (usually newly thought deliverables such as quick reference material that weren't in the initial plan) while still keeping within your estimated project hours.
  • Getting everything done, especially trying new ideas and experiments, despite increasing burdens of documentation, editorial, and management needs.
  • Dealing with the sense of marginalization and second-class citizenry that often accompanies the tech writer's role.

I'm hoping this meeting will provide a change of format that allows us to get to know each other better as well as focus on issues that matter to us.

If desired, you can bring samples of your work — such as guides, reference cards, videos, etc — and get feedback from other colleagues.

Note: Because of this particular room restriction at the library, I'm not allowed to bring food. I know this is a bit odd, but apparently some rooms at the library do not allow food, and so do not charge cleaning fees. Sorry, it was the only room available. There are some cafes outside the library's book area, though.

To get a better feel for possible headcount, can you take this quick two-question survey to let me know how many people to expect? Thanks. I hope to see you there.

About Tom Johnson

Tom Johnson

I'm an API technical writer based in the Seattle area. On this blog, I write about topics related to technical writing and communication — such as software documentation, API documentation, AI, information architecture, content strategy, writing processes, plain language, tech comm careers, and more. Check out my API documentation course if you're looking for more info about documenting APIs. Or see my posts on AI and AI course section for more on the latest in AI and tech comm.

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