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Managing Writers: A Real World Guide To Managing Technical Documentation

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Managing Writers is a practical guide to managing documentation projects in the real world. It is informal, but concise, using examples from the author's experience working with and managing technical writers. It looks beyond big project, big team methodologies to the issues faced by smaller, less well-funded projects. Managing Writers is for technical writers, both freelancers and employees, documentation managers, and managers in other disciplines who are responsible for documentation; anyone who may need to manage, full or part-time, a documentation project.

280 pages, Paperback

First published December 31, 2008

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About the author

Richard L. Hamilton

81 books14 followers

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5 stars
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Displaying 1 - 9 of 9 reviews
Profile Image for Ioana.
49 reviews17 followers
July 19, 2020
The "real-life" in the title is not just for marketing. This book is a no-bullshit introduction to managing a documentation department... from a guy who started out as a documentation manager with no prior tech writing experience. I started reading it to get an outsider's view on the world... and I continued reading it because it is an insightful book that doesn't sugarcoat things and offers solutions to common problems.

Since it was written 10+ years ago, the book is slightly dated in some chapters, but that didn't really detract from its usefulness.
34 reviews5 followers
February 15, 2021
A worthy, though somewhat wordy, read on the nuts and bolts of managing documentation projects and people. It provided a solid foundation of theory paired with practical tips, and as an experienced docs project manager, I was able to get some new ideas out of it as well. I would highly recommended for newer and experienced managers alike.

My only criticism is that the book has some outdated references (such as to websites that are now 404s and technologies that are out of date), though they're easy to skim over to get back into the good stuff. It could stand for a new edition. I'd also like to see the many "he or she"s updated to "their" in keeping with inclusive language. Nonbinary docs managers exist, you know, I'm one of them!
Profile Image for Sarah R..
10 reviews
January 8, 2022
Plenty of practical information with solid advice for dealing with different aspects of managing technical writers and projects. Could use some updating in the technology chapters-- much has changed in the decade + since this was written.

I'm really interested in how to manage metrics around technical documentation and found the section on metrics in this book insightful.
Profile Image for M.
183 reviews6 followers
June 20, 2020
Thought there was a lot of useful advice in here. The book is over a decade old though, so there were some sections and many references to technologies and processes that are dated now.
24 reviews
July 17, 2009
This very practical and easy-to-read book encapsulates many of the best practices that I have learned and practiced in my 20-year career. Just the right depth on all the right topics. A good orientation for new doc managers and a great reference for those of us who are veterans in the field.
Profile Image for Tom Johnson.
3 reviews49 followers
May 2, 2009
Helpful for managers of technical writing teams, particularly if you don't have a background in technical communication.
Displaying 1 - 9 of 9 reviews

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