When I first started my career as a technical writer back in 1989 (1987, if you count my part-time cooperative education internship),
I cross-stitched a quotation by L. Rust Hills (and framed it with an illustration by E. H. Shepard of Tigger writing with a quill pen on a piece of paper):
The sinister thing about writing is that it starts off seeming so easy but ends up being so hard.
Of course, Mark Twain seems to be quoted frequently with the opposite opinion:
Writing is easy. All you have to do is cross out the wrong words.
I think that these quotes speak to the role that editors play in the writing process. There’s a reason that I became a technical editor, working with technical writers to help them discover and cross out the wrong words, making their job easier.
So, why am I espousing quotes about writing this morning? Well, in part to explain the long absence from writing in this blog about technical editing oh so long ago. Blank pages freak me out. I have trouble getting started, even with topics that I am passionate about. However, I did read another blog post about just this very topic (“Blog Versus Web Log: Back to Origins“), which is inspiring me to keep it simpler and and make it more personal, and to just start writing again.
I also re-read my other two blog posts this morning. They inspired me as well. I am going to try to write most posts from personal experiences that I have in my career as a technical editor. I will write about personal anecdotes, with a dash of research thrown in for good measure.
Sorry about the long absence. Happy holidays and happy new year! (This post did kinda sound like a resolution for 2012, didn’t it?)