Open Week - another docs day?

Augustina Blair augustinablair at
Sat Oct 3 19:14:00 UTC 2009

Recently I've been dialoguing with a few new contributors and I've had a lot
of advice to offer regarding the writing process. I wouldn't mind doing a
session on how to get started with writing a document and tips for editing
existing documents. I have no idea how these should be organized and I've
never done anything like this.

The talk would basically cover what you need to do before writing a
technical document. Rather than just diving in and shooting from the hip,
how to set everything up before you write a single word to ensure the docs
meet the audiences' needs.

The talk would cover:
- Defining your audience (personas)
- Define the goal of the document
- Define use cases (what tasks can the user complete using this
- Writing an outline
- Researching the issue (searching the forums or talking with other teams)
- working with the doc team (post a draft to personal wiki and then post to
the team for review).

It sounds like a lot but I'm imagining a simple step by step process with
straightforward definitions and links to external resources. I'd have to put
together some templates/examples to link as well. Potentially this could be
broken out into further talks to discuss any of these individual topics
further, but I thought it might be nice to do a broad overview to help steer
new contributors in the right direction.

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