Why I blog

I’ve always enjoyed words, reading and writing. At school English was my favourite subject, with Physics a close second (if there had been a computing O Grade I would probably have taken that instead). My parents are both teachers and much of my inquisitive nature was fuelled by books; I still have, and treasure, a set of Readers Digest encyclopedias gifted to me by my late grandparents. My Dad was always interested in computers, so from the days of having a BBC Micro, and then an Apple Macintosh Plus in the house it’s no surprise that I got interested in those too. Put computers and words together and writing seems to be the obvious next step. From the initial wonder …

Continue reading »

Healthy Achievements

The health kick has stalled again but I think I’ve figured out why. I need a goal. I need an achievement. In the past I’ve managed to tackle a 10KM run, and a 47 mile cycle ride from Glasgow to Edinburgh and, more recently, I took part in a local 5KM event. All of them gave me a target, a goal, a reason to do some training. This is not news to me, I know I need a challenge to push me to exercise. After that I know that the healthier eating falls into place and after a couple of weeks I start to change my approach and attitude to being healthy, I’ll take more care of what I eat, …

Continue reading »

Where I stand

Note: I’ve not made any explicit references but this post may contain triggers. Somewhere in my head there is a grouping of thoughts. I’m trying to write down some of these thoughts because I’m fed up with them being whipped up into a frenzy in my head, leaving me annoyed and angry by the actions and comments of others. Whether it’s a noted journalist who is pushing her, very binary, view of the world on others, a “casual remark” overheard at work that (unknowingly) supports the patriarchy, or yet another example of everyday sexism, I want to call out these thoughts, acknowledge them, admit that I’ve fallen prey to some of them in the past (I never said I was …

Continue reading »

The Death of Tradition

Job titles are one thing, but what do you actually do? Are you a ‘traditional’ Technical Author or a modern technical communications professional? Is there a difference? I think there is, I think there is a distinction between the two although I’m not quite sure where that line is drawn and, as with most things in this multi-discipline profession of ours, the line is probably blurry and not all that straight. For me the line separates what I consider the old and the new, the line between traditional technical writing and the modern day technical communicator, and I think the distinction is largely around the approaches each type of professional take when it comes to managing content. I realise this may seem …

Continue reading »

Reflection

It seems like no time since I was looking forward to the summer. The holiday in Singapore was months away, Pedal for Scotland was a spot in the distance and ohhh yes I was gonna get so much done. In the past I think I’d now be sitting here saying “Christ, it’s almost November, what have I achieved?!” but these days things are different. Yes I could’ve done more but I’m more focussed on being happy than being productive (even though the two are inextricably linked), on getting the balance right between the stuff I want to do and the stuff I have to do, and generally I find myself calmer, more rational and more aware. The darker nights bring …

Continue reading »

ISTC West of Scotland Area Group meeting

The next ISTC West of Scotland area group meeting in Glasgow will take place on Thursday 16th February 2012, from 7.30 pm onwards. Come along to talk about latest news and trends in communication, or just to meet other communication professionals. The event is free and open to anyone interested in technical communication, such as technical authors, information architects, internal communication professionals, report writers, marketing writers, web content writers and graphic designers. Venue: Waxy O’Connors pub, 44 West George Street, Glasgow, G2 1DH. Please make your way to McTurk’s Room on the middle level. If you plan to attend, please sign up for the event at http://www.eventbrite.com/event/2743613221 to help us anticipate attendance numbers. Please forward this message on to your colleagues or …

Continue reading »

ISTC Area Group meeting – West of Scotland

Thursday 13th October, from 7.30pm, in Waxy O’Connors pub. The next ISTC technical communicators’ meeting in Glasgow will take place on Thursday 13th October 2011, from 7.30 pm onwards. I will be presenting a report from the Technical Communication UK 2011 conference. Come along to talk about latest news and trends in communication, or just to meet other communication professionals. The event is free and open to anyone interested in technical communication, such as technical authors, information architects, internal communication professionals, report writers, marketing writers, web content writers and graphic designers. Venue: Waxy O’Connors pub, 44 West George Street, Glasgow, G2 1DH. Please make your way to McTurk’s Room on the middle level.

Continue reading »

Next West of Scotland Area Group meeting

The next ISTC technical communicators’ meeting in Glasgow will take place on Thursday 13th October 2011, from 7.30 pm onwards. As it’s happening just after the conference, I will be presenting a (short) report from the Technical Communication UK 2011 conference. Come along to talk about latest news and trends in communication, or just to meet other communication professionals. The event is free and open to anyone interested in technical communication, such as technical authors, information architects, internal communication professionals, report writers, marketing writers, web content writers and graphic designers. Venue: Waxy O’Connors pub, 44 West George Street, Glasgow, G2 1DH. Please make your way to McTurk’s Room on the middle level.

Continue reading »

Where is everyone?

The attendance at last nights ISTC Area Group meeting in the West of Scotland was poor, and as it seems to fluctuate quite dramatically at times (we went from four people to ten and back again in the space of three meetings) I’m trying to figure out why. Is it apathy? Laziness? Lack of awareness? Or perhaps people are unclear of the benefits of turning up? If you are a member of the ISTC, and on the mailing list (or perhaps you are following the ISTC on Twitter?), then you will receive notifications of the area group meetings. But what if you aren’t a member? How do we attract… scratch that, how do we FIND people who may want to …

Continue reading »