Technical_Writing_What_and_How.pdf

62efdbbae2cf211e48bd16f1948ea1f4?s=47 Edidiong Asikpo
May 23, 2020
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 Technical_Writing_What_and_How.pdf

62efdbbae2cf211e48bd16f1948ea1f4?s=128

Edidiong Asikpo

May 23, 2020
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Transcript

  1. 2.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL About Me • Software Engineer at Interswitch

    Group. • Technical Writer at VideoLAN • Open Source Advocate. • Building DevCUyo, She Code Africa and Women Will.
  2. 3.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL Table of Content • What Is Technical

    Writing? • What Are The Skills a Technical Writer Should Have? • How to Get Started • Career Opportunities • Conclusion
  3. 4.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL What Is Technical Writing? According to Grammar

    , “Technical writing is a type of writing where the author is writing about a particular subject that requires direction, instruction, or explanation. It is an efficient and clear way of explaining something and how it works.”
  4. 8.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL What are the skills a technical writer

    should have? Writing Audience perception Technical Skill Research A Unique Voice
  5. 9.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL Writing The first and most important skill

    every technical writer needs is writing. Don’t be confused about the two terms because writing and technical writing are quite different. Simply put, writing is when I put down my thoughts, but technical writing is not just about putting down my thoughts but also explaining those thoughts the reasons behind those thoughts in a logical and technical manner. Therefore, you must first understand how to write before going ahead to explain that topic or concept in a clear and technical manner.
  6. 10.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL Audience perception Knowing how to write is

    not enough to be a technical writer. Another important skill technical writers need is the ability to know their target audience and also write in a way that the audience will understand.
  7. 11.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL To know who’s your target audience, ask

    yourself the following questions before you start writing • Who are they? • What do they need? • Where will they be reading? • When will they be reading? • Why will they be reading? • How will they be reading?
  8. 12.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL Technical Skill The goal of a technical

    writer is to enable readers to understand a highly complex process or concept clearly. For this to be achieved, technical writers need to be well familiarized with that topic or skill they are about to write on.
  9. 13.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL “If you can't explain it to a

    six year old, you don't understand it yourself.” ― Albert Einstein
  10. 14.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL Research The importance of understanding how to

    carry research as a technical writer cannot be overemphasized. You need to focus on researching and learning everything there is to know about the product you’re writing for and then explaining it to your target audience in the most coherent way possible. Simply put, Google the hell out of things.
  11. 15.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL A Unique Voice Writing is a great

    way to digest and process the information we take in and most times, people tend to plagiarize some of the information they take in by literally using the same words from another author. This isn’t bad when you give that author credit, but most times writers don’t give the original writers credit for their work and that is completely wrong. To avoid this, find your own voice because you are unique.
  12. 16.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL It ain’t whatcha write, it’s the way

    atcha write it.” —Jack Kerouac, WD A Unique Voice
  13. 17.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL How To Get Started Take a course

    on technical writing Read Write Stay Consistent
  14. 18.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL Take a course on technical writing Technical

    writing is an in-demand skill and employers are looking out for the very best writers to hire. There are so many things that you may not know are important except you take a course on technical writing. The authors of most of these courses have been writing for 10 to 20 years and have discovered really important tips. There was definitely a huge difference in the way I wrote after I took a Technical Writing course by Google.
  15. 19.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL Read Reading other people’s work helps you

    find words you never knew about and also understand how the world accepts writing. “Read a thousand books, and your words will flow like a river.”― Lisa See. When you see good documentation or article, you get inspired by that work and implement some of the things you saw there on your work as well.
  16. 20.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL Write After you’ve taken a technical writing

    course and read a couple of articles, the next and most important thing to do is to start WRITING. “You learn to write by writing, and by reading and thinking about how writers have created their characters and invented their stories. If you are not a reader, don't even think about being a writer.” ― Jean M. Auel
  17. 21.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL Tips on Writing Learn to follow a

    style guide when writing. It helps you stay on track and follow the best writing principles. Make your paragraphs support a single idea. Don’t cram everything within one paragraph. Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication so always use simpler words and remove every unnecessary word. After writing your first draft, read your content out loud while assuming you are the reader. This will help you spot a lot of words that can be improved.
  18. 22.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL Tips on Writing Edit that first draft

    only when you are focused. I recommend you step away from it for a few hours, get back to it, and then edit. Your first draft can be cut down by 40 to 50 percent without losing the main content of the message you wanted to pass. Seek feedback by consulting with experts in the field you are writing about because no technical writer knows every technical detail. Proofread the article again. Publish it.
  19. 23.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL Stay Consistent “You don’t start out writing

    good stuff. You start out writing crap and thinking it’s good stuff, and then gradually you get better at it. That’s why I say one of the most valuable traits is persistence.” ― Octavia E. Butler The only way to get better at writing is by writing consistently. The rapid improvement of your writing skill if you stay consistent will shock you and the entire world. So don’t just start this journey as a writer. Try to stay consistent as well.
  20. 24.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL Career Opportunities Technical writing is a prized

    and profitable skill. It is a valuable title whether you are interested in making a career shift or adding this ability to your current role. Remember, any employee who can convey technical information at work is very valuable to a company. According to Glassdoor, technical writers make between 40,000$ to 80,000$ annually. Some companies pay between 100$ to 500$ per article you write. Find a list of those paid community writing programs here. Google started a Season of Docs program to connect technical writers to open source organizations because they realized the importance of good documentation in how developers choose and use open source. Technical writers get paid 3000$ to participate in this program. You can read about the application process here.
  21. 25.

    Interswitch - INTERNAL Conclusion Technical writers have the great benefit

    of becoming lifelong learners because they need to be well-versed in that field, they are writing about in order to communicate the content clearly to readers. “I believe that a good writer doesn’t really need to be told anything except to keep at it.” — Chinua Achebe