Posted in Uncategorized

Villegas Views: Be Thankful for Technical Communication

be-thankfulHere’s my latest post for the STC Notebook, which has a Thanksgiving theme, but it could apply all year. Are you thankful for the technical communication field? I’m rather thankful, especially this past year, and I list several reasons why you should be, too.

Villegas Views: Be Thankful for Technical Communication

Posted in Uncategorized

You’ve got what it takes in Tech Comm? Here’s your chance to PROVE IT!

doctormadeofawesomeCome on, admit it–you know you are good.  You know that deep down, you are one of the best in the tech comm business doing what you do.  Perhaps your co-workers and your manager know it, or your clients know it, but does anyone else?

Here’s an opportunity to show the rest of the world–especially your peers in the field–that you have what it takes to be one of the best technical communicators out there.

The STC New York Metro, Philadelphia (my chapter!) and Houston chapters –three outstanding award-winning chapters–have combined forces to bring you one of the best Regional TechComm Competitions available–and you don’t have to be a member of any of these chapters to submit an entry!

Click on this logo for more information!

You have to hurry, though, as all entries should arrive by 3:00 PM ET on October 17, 2013!

Now, you may be asking the following questions…

Why should I enter?

  • Winners receive awards and tangible recognition of achievement from the STC , which celebrated its 60th anniversary this year
  • Receive detailed evaluations from judges in the technical communications field; this objective peer evaluation supports continuous improvement
  • Validate your methods and earn visibility

Who can enter and what can be entered?

Anyone (student or professional) who produces technical communication, training material, or content for the web and other devices can enter. Membership in the STC is not a requirement. You may submit an entry as a team, an individual or on behalf of a colleague.

Enter your best work in the following categories:

  • Instructional Materials
  • Informational Materials
  • Promotional Materials
  • User Support Materials

Entries are subject to the rules that are defined in the STC General Information and Competition Rules.

The STC offers two levels of competition:

  • Local and regional
  • International

Regional competition entries that earn Excellence or Distinguished Technical Communication awards qualify for the STC International Summit Awards competition.

Sounds good! How to I submit my work?
The STC strongly encourages all entrants to submit the online version of their content or send URLs because:

  • Uploading online entries is faster and cheaper for entrants
  • There is less risk of damage to entries if sent online
  • Distribution of entries to Judges can be done quicker and at lower costs

Whenever possible, send the URL or the online version of your content. Instructions will be given on sending entries via GoogleDrive or FTP.

Okay, I want to do this! I’ve got what it takes! I’m ready to submit, and just need more details on the rules, entry fees, and all that’s involved with this competition, because I want to get feedback from top technical communicators from around the country!

Find all the details you need at the STC-NYC Metro Chapter’s Competition website, found at:

This is a great opportunity, so don’t miss it!


Posted in Uncategorized

What’s wrong with being a lurker?

watson on laptopIt occurred to me that while I haven’t been writing or curating as much as I usually do, I still make sure that I’m reading my various social media feeds, so I can see what the latest trends and conversations are about these days.

The thought popped into my mind–what’s wrong with being a lurker, who is someone who reads but doesn’t comment online? After all, not everyone likes or wants to be writing all the time. I personally have a big mouth that translates here into writing, but that doesn’t mean that everyone likes to talk as much as I do. There is no requirement in social media that one needs to be posting or re-posting tweets or other information that they read every five minutes, after all.  Even so, what’s the advantage of being a lurker online?

The way I see it, being a lurker is similar to being the person in the room who obviously isn’t saying a word, but is absorbing all the information that’s going on in the room. The lurker can read, observe and learn a lot just by staying still and not saying anything, and in the process, acquires a vast amount of information being given through comments made and by reading articles posted.  This is not a bad way to learn a lot about any given topic, while learning about the people who shape those thoughts or trends.

In the end, however, the lurker loses out. Social media is not only about communicating information, but it’s also about the connections made through this kind of communications. Communication with each other is the key to why we can have discussions or debates on issues.  The person who writes those posts or tweets those tweets appreciates it when you retweet, or even make a brief comment of, “I agree!” or “That was a great article.” It validates the position of the author, but it also shows your competence in the subject matter too–that you understand the concept being presented.  By respectfully responding with your own commentary, it allows others to see YOUR perspective as well. You automatically become part of the conversation and the process.

Don’t be a lurker and sit back for too long. Feel free to participate! You might be surprised to find that your original perspective might be enjoyed and respected by others.

Posted in Uncategorized

Villegas Views: Why Bother Learning More in Technical Communication?

See on Scoop.itM-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications

Danielle M. Villegas‘s insight:

I have a new monthly byline with the STC Notebook blog! Welcome to Villegas Views. Check out this latest entry about continuing education in tech comm.


See on

Posted in Uncategorized

A First-Timer’s Summit: Speed Dating and Pick-up Lines at the Summit? What?

See on Scoop.itM-learning, E-Learning, and Technical Communications

Danielle M. Villegas‘s insight:

Here’s the fifth of my series for the STC Notebook. Are you an introvert? This is the article for you! –techcommgeekmom

See on