Over the last nine months or so, I've been compiling a list of resources for someone looking to transition into the software tech writing world. It can be hard to know where to start, especially if you're transitioning into technical writing from another industry.
Don't feel pressured to learn about everything on this list; check out some of the books and articles, first. If you find yourself interested and wanting to learn more, try learning some of the software and languages mentioned below.
- Asana and Trello: Kanban-style project management
- Confluence: notes, project planning, great for creating templates
- The Product is Docs: Writing technical documentation in a product development group
- Developing Quality Technical Information
- DITA Best Practices: A Roadmap for Writing, Editing, and Architecting in DITA
- Every Page is Page One
Articles that teach you cool stuff
- Code editors: Visual Studio Code, Atom
- Graphics: Snagit, OmniGraffle, Adobe Photoshop
- Authoring tools: oXygen XML Editor, MadCap Flare, RoboHelp
- API development: Postman
- Testing documentation: Vale, write-good linter
Other tools, skills, and languages to know
essential to know
- Working with the command line
- Lightweight markup languages (Markdown, Asciidoc, reStructured Text)
- DITA XML—consider learning the basics; if you find yourself interested in more and want to work in a DITA shop, then do a deep dive
- Static Site Generators (SSGs): includes Hugo, Jekyll, Gatsby, MkDocs, and Vuepress
Want to contribute to this page?
If you know of any books, articles, or tools that new technical writers should know, I'd love to add it to this list. Feel free to file a GitHub issue and include the resource type, a short description, and link, if applicable.
april 28, 2020