There is something special about Write The Docs. I’ve been to a number of conferences in the last few years, many of which were tech-specific, and this is the only one where I feel confident that I could have walked away friends with everyone. People who attend this conference are kind, smart, thoughtful, and every other adjective you’d hope for your communicators.
I was honored to be among the 15 speakers chosen to speak. On Monday, September 10, I presented, “How to tear down your existing documentation,” focusing on the ways writers could write a proposal to convince their managers that the documentation needs to be blown up.
In a few months, I’ll be joining the technical writers community at Write The Docs Prague. I’m thrilled to have been chosen and I look forward to meeting my fellow writers. Check out my intended abstract:
How to tear down existing documentation and rewrite docs that actually work
We all know what it’s like to look at a series of existing documentation and think, “how did this happen?” Be it a large swath of unorganized content or a lack of a clear strategy, the complications of bad docs aren’t just a curse for documentation editors. Our readers see it, too. It leads to confused support requests and possibly a loss of customers.
Back in November, Jeanne Brooks (fellow member of Tech LadyMafia) reached out to me to ask for me to speak at an upcoming hackathon for Fusion RiseUp. Though I’ve spoken at events before, for the most part it had been through JCC Association and JCC events. I had never been asked to speak as me, as a professional.
To be honest, I was surprised. I couldn’t help but wonder, in the pool of amazing women that we belong to, why would she ask me? Of course, that may have had something to do with a bit of my own confidence issues in the moment, but what came back was a list of reasons as to why I was indeed more than qualified.
As nervous as I was, I said yes. This was not an opportunity that I could miss. And boy, am I glad I did.
Instead of speaking about development or hacking in a traditional sense, I spoke about building community. Back in November 2012, I attended NASA Social Final Journey of Atlantis. As you may (or may not) know, even getting to Orlando was an adventure (thanks Hurricane Sandy). Community building carried on long after the event ended, and there is now a group of individuals that are a part of my extended network with a shared love for all things space.