If you’re interested in the world of technology, becoming a tech writer can be a great gig. Whether you’re writing tech stories just as a side hustle or if you want to be a full-time writer, it can be difficult to know how to get started. So, read on for some helpful tips on how to become a tech writer!
Do your research
Your first step should be to do some basic research on what it’s like to be a tech writer (either freelance or full-time). There are a lot of different types of tech writers, so you should start out by determining what kind of topics you’re interested in writing about. Some tech writers stick to tech topics (gadgets, coding, advancements in technology, etc.) with content writing for a website, while others veer towards technical writing for specific companies. This type of project is usually done with organizations that offer tech products or services (like software, hardware, or email). The content they need can vary a great deal, from product manuals or user guides to documentation for employees on how to do their jobs or troubleshooting options. If you think you might have the skills to do this writing, it can be pretty lucrative. Either way, once you get some background on the tech writing field, you’ll be more prepared to get started with your own career.
Learn some new skills
If you’re not sure of the exact skills you’ll need, it can be helpful to search for open job listings for tech writers. That way you can get some more information on what might be required of you at your first gig. Whether its experience with specific software or certain writing styles, you’ll have a better picture of what skills to acquire. Obviously it’s imperative that you have strong writing abilities – most employers prefer candidates who have degrees in English, communications, or journalism. If there’s a specific area of technology that you want to write about, make sure you’re up-to-date with knowledge in that field.
Create or update your resume and cover letter
Once you decide your area of focus, write or update your resume with the added skills that are relevant to the tech writing positions you’ll be applying for. Likewise, make sure your cover letter is updated and reflects why you’re pursuing a career in tech writing.
In the writing field, most employers care more about experience than they do anything else. If you can prove you’ve written effectively for other projects, they’re much more willing to hire you. That means you should start applying and get as much experience as possible with tech topics. Then the more clips you have to share, the stronger of a candidate you’ll be to future employers. You can also research what the going rates are for technology and technical writers, so that you’ll know how much to charge for future freelance gigs.
Keep up the work
Even when you’ve gained some experience, it’s always good to remember that you should look at your writing gigs as a way to increase your knowledge. Try to stay informed with technology headlines in the news so that you’ll be in-the-know and able to pitch story ideas for upcoming projects. Always stay open to learning more – you can only benefit from being an open book!
Follow these tips, and you’ll be well on your way to becoming a successful tech writer!