Emergency Response

I hadn’t planned on discussing emergencies twice in one week, but that’s the thing about emergencies: they sort of appear unexpectedly. Today I got to respond to one, rather against my will. Things are under control and slowly improving, but it was an interesting way to spend an afternoon. Continue reading

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Who’s in Charge if You’ve Got an Emergency?

Emergencies can appear out of nowhere, even during a pandemic. One day you’re operating under the “new normal,” the next day a subject matter expert calls in sick or the program manager is dragged into a meeting just as a situation arises that requires a decision. Who do you contact? It’s good to have a clear chain of command in an organization or their decision-making process when a problem arises. Continue reading

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Do You Have to Believe in What You’re Writing?

While some managers won’t want to hear or read this, it is entirely possible to do a job effectively without necessarily believing in the messages you’re required to write. However, there are side effects to operating this way, which is why I usually advise someone seeking a tech writing job to pursue work with companies or industries they admire or respect. Why make yourself or your coworkers miserable? Continue reading

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The Nuts and Bolts of Applying to Write at NASA

This past week I got an email from a college student who wanted to write for NASA. She took the time to read my page full of advice regarding the space-writing life and still wanted to know more. More to the point, she wanted specifics about the mechanics of applying for a job to the U.S. space agency. As is my practice, I responded to my reader by email and will now share with the rest of you what I shared with her. I’m helpful that way. 🙂 Continue reading

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Interview: Kristina Hendrix, Director of Communications

Kristina Hendrix and I worked together at Marshall Space Flight Center from 2006 to 2010. At the time, she was the events coordinator. Since then she’s gotten a Master’s Degree in Journalism with a strategic communication emphasis and has taken on increasingly more responsible positions within the aerospace and defense community in Huntsville, Alabama. She has been on the talking and extroverted side of sharing technical information. It was great to get back in touch with her and to learn about her current role. Continue reading

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