F.E.A.R.*

F.E.A.R.*

Several readers responded to my recent blog about not liking to write but liking to have written. To overcome writer’s block, I force myself to sit still and write for a block of time. I have become a voluntary prisoner again today, at least until I finish this blog post. I have recently become aware… Continue Reading

I get it: Being edited is hard on a writer’s ego

I get it: Being edited is hard on a writer’s ego

As a freelance editor, I spend a lot of time changing authors’ texts. That’s my job. It wasn’t until I experienced the editing process firsthand before publishing my book, Business Matters, that I truly realized what other authors may know: It’s hard on the ego to be edited. When I saw the edits, I didn’t… Continue Reading

I am a writer. You are a writer, too.

We are all writers

Think you’re not a writer? Then read Everybody Writes: Your Go-To Guide to Creating Ridiculously Good Content by Ann Handley. You’ll probably agree with Handley that we are all writers and we should therefore be the best writers we can be. I applaud the clear and logical structure of her book; its six main sections are:… Continue Reading

Getting feedback: Number your lines

Getting feedback: Number your lines

In my last blog post, I discussed some emotional difficulties of accepting feedback on your writing. This post will share a practical suggestion to help you improve the review process, whether you are the reviewer or the author. For our discussion, let’s assume that you are seeking feedback on a Microsoft® Word document and want… Continue Reading

Accepting feedback? Take what you like; leave the rest

Accepting feedback? Take what you like; leave the rest

  When I teach about feedback in my technical writing webinars, I often quote these words of Frank Norris*: “I hate to write, but I like to have written.”* I would slightly reframe this comment: “I hate to receive feedback about my writing, but I like to have received that feedback.” Why would I want… Continue Reading

The agony of the long-distance writer

Next month, my daughter will run a marathon to celebrate a milestone birthday. I marvel at her training routine―10-mile runs, half-marathons, intervals, cross-training. I can’t wait to cheer her on in Aspen. Although my running days are over, I’ve recently completed a marathon of sorts. I’ve just spent six months revising 26 chapters for my… Continue Reading

I don’t write anymore

I didn’t write this article. Instead, I spoke it using Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 Speech Recognition for PC* and edited it by voice with a little help from my mouse. I had used Dragon before, maybe 15 years ago, and found it clunky and unrewarding. But when my wrists started to ache after prolonged keyboarding, I… Continue Reading

How fast do you write? Or edit? Do you know?

My inaugural blog for the Society for Technical Communication, published February 11, reviewed the excellent second edition of What to Charge: Pricing Strategies for Freelancers and Consultants. But why should you, especially if you are an employee, care about charging for your work? As I wrote in the blog, author Laurie Lewis suggests that we… Continue Reading

I don’t like to write…

I always startle my students by announcing that I don’t like to write. I think they probably assume: Surely a writing teacher must just love to write! I do not like to write because writing is hard work, including writing a blog. But like so many other writers, I love to have written. I also… Continue Reading