Re: "15 Tips to Improve Your Technical Writing"

Subject: Re: "15 Tips to Improve Your Technical Writing"
From: Chris Despopoulos <despopoulos_chriss -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 16 Oct 2019 11:45:05 +0000 (UTC)

I agree with Peter... Nothing new here.Â

The problem with just about everything written about technical writing is that it's all "How To" documentation. Specific procedures to address specific tasks. Where's the discussion that tells us how to arrive at these 15 tips, or how to evaluate whether they make sense, or how to come up with tip #16?

So far the only approach I've seen that is at a higher level is Jim Carroll's with minimal manuals. That's a theoretical approach to documenting tasks, specifically (as far as I can tell). Oh, and "The Theory and Practice of Technical Writing" by Samuel Chandler Earle actually stands the test of time IMO, even with a date of 1916... He has an awesome concept of a synopsis to criticize and to plan a piece of writing. Aside form that, all I've seen are How-To docs... Task oriented, if you will.Â

I think tech writing suffers for want of a theory. You can guess that I'm working on a book... I wonder if I started up a blog, would that get any attention? It would be nice to try out some of the ideas.

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