17 Reasons to NOT Become a Technical Writer

Yesterday marked twenty-five years since I started working at Ticketmaster as a senior phone agent.  At a little over eight years (September 1989-December 1997), it is the longest-lasting job I have had so far.  Still, I am hoping to beat that at the place where I am working now.  I have now been at my current technical writer job for five months, and as I put more experience under my belt, I am having a better time in the office.  Yesterday, for instance, I was asked to help train a new technical writer who started this month – definitely a good sign.  And this project is expected to need folks like me until 2023, so if it runs late, I could be here until I am old enough to retire.  Job security is welcome, inasmuch as I have seen terribly little of it for the past four years.

Anyway, I just read an article on the downsides of this kind of work.  For some reason I cannot copy and paste even an excerpt from the text (is the whole article one big graphic?), so you’ll have to follow this link to read it:

http://kingoranges.com/our-17-reasons-to-not-become-a-technical-writer/

I’m wondering about the reference to interpersonal skills in #13.  I became a technical writer because my people skills were never very good.  Are they referring to the mania of meetings you are expected to attend?  Some of the places I have worked in seemed to consider meetings more important than work.

Now if I had written the article I would add an eighteenth point:  This is a feast & famine profession.  The jobs pay great when you can get them (I couldn’t pay the bills on what I made as a teacher), but they are only common in areas with high-tech centers, like Silicon Valley or Oak Ridge.  Although one of those jobs persuaded me to move from Florida to Kentucky in 2006, Kentucky is not a high-tech center; hence my long period out of work until last April, and the job I had in Connecticut during 2011 and 2012.

But even with the points mentioned in the article, it’s good to be back at it again.  Now I’m telling my co-workers this is the most complicated job I will ever love!

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