Becoming a Technical Communicator

Okies...I have stopped bitching about 'Time'...either its crawling or flying...How would 'Time' feel? I have to consider its feeling also!:-P

Enough PJ...lets jump into the pool...err...the topic!

The first time I heard about Technical Writing was during my early college that time I was totally disillusioned with a normal IT job and was looking into management. Deep down inside, I knew I was a techie and the conflict was always there. I searched around for freelance jobs and found some creative writing jobs or rather a website(Chillibreeze) were one could quote for projects and get the job done. It sounded interested and I applied. They told me to do a write up on .net of all things! Being an open source aficionado it was a killing blow. Still I managed to write a very decent article and I was successfully placed in their pool.

Next came the biggest block. I didn't have regular net connection and couldn't quote the projects on time. Also, there were too many experienced people, solely dedicated to the cause, which made my life difficult. So, I resigned to my fate of not having any money to blast during the college days.

After my negative IRMA results, I was pondering what to do with my life. During my exams I saw an ad by Knowgenesis about a Technical Communication course. I called the coordinator and was chilled by the course fee. Anyway, I decided to appear for the entrance test and promo meeting. After the meeting and the test (which was very tough!), I really wanted to do the course. Money still mattered though. The results came out and I came first by leap and bounds! (or so its said! :P) Now came the hardest part. Convincing my parents about the viability of this course. I fought tooth and nail, negotiated hard with the course coordinator and finally joined.

The first week, I was hit really hard. The possibility of screwing up was very high. The language I was to follow had to be simple to the core. Here I am, with the name of being a verbose and flowery writer, who coaxed and cajoled the college staff with my eloquent language! (or so its said! :P) Thankfully, I settled in quite well and took a liking to the work. Though I was still laid back in writing assignments, I made a good impression on our guru.

I realised a very sad thing in the course. Most of the people there came as a last resort as placement assurance was given. Many had very limited writing skills and those who did, lacked maturity and confidence.

Our placement tests began. Or rather test. Suntec was the company. Apart from some minor details I scavenged from the net for a friend to choose between Suntec and US Technology, I knew very little about the company. The good old means of reading up the website was done and I appeared for the test and the interview.

Usually I am an early bird and reach places much earlier than its required. For one of the most important things in my life so far, I was late! (Rather others were very early :-D)

Test was pretty tough. Me being a techie found it really difficult. I have long forgone the days of english grammar and had to recollect hard to answer the questions. I think what really saved the day for me was the sample user manual I made for a stereo system. First level of interview with my TL went fine. Second level with GM was a piece of cake. The third level was a very interesting one indeed! With the HR. He really wanted to whether I am taking up this job out of desperation. He tried to ridicule me and at one point even said it was a not a job where you can rise through the ranks. I was in quagmire, but on the outside I played the arrogant brat and said I know of the opportunities blah blah blah and finally came out very, very confused.

The results took a long time. Coordinator and our Guru said I was in and it was a matter of selecting others. Butterflies were flying around my stomach for days on. Finally, when the HR dude called...I was out of coverage area! Finally, I called him up and all was settled, with a decent package! (for a fresher...)

The history! ( In short: I did well in the training and even after faltering in my grad exams, managed to hold on to the job. Now pretty much established as a billable and bankable resource within the team. Secondarily, as the guy who manages the technical aspects and additionally as the internal knowledge manager.)

That is the tale folks! Of how Rockus became a Technical Communicator. (Technical Communication includes Technical Writing and all other forms of Technical Communication like product demos)