Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Assignment #1

The professional writing field has as many applications as the job market has industries. After examining a few of the websites the same job titles kept appearing. There are technical writers, editors, publishers and public relations specialists. All of these professions revolve very obviously around the professional writing field. However, the skills required of a professional writer can be adapted to other jobs as well. Visual and website designers, translators, and academics all use the same skills even when their jobs don't always directly involve writing. Most fields now require computer skills like Dreamweaver, HTML and CSS in addition to more traditional writing skills such as research, analysis, editing and comprehension. These are skills necessary to perform well in any professional writing job. Aside from being technically skilled professional writers must also be able to consider the target audience of their product and adjust accordingly. 

My interest in professional writing lies in expressing technical processes in a way that people operating outside of that field may understand them. In my work at a local bicycle shop I find that I frequently have to either explain technical mechanical processes to customers so they can understand what is wrong with their bicycle, how we are fixing it, and what they can do to maintain the repairs. I would like to explore the skills required to write technical user manuals for bicycles and bicycle related products. This involves becoming familiar with my audience and more familiar with the products and processes I intend to explain and write about.


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