It was fun to see this in my Quora feed, this morning. The stats, however, show my fame might be fleeting with #11 nipping at my heels. But, for the time being, I’ll enjoy my moment in the spotlight. Gaining notoriety wasn’t a particular goal of mine, but I might as well enjoy it and it gives me the opportunity to ponder a few things before I dive into the rest of my weekend chores (ponder spelled: p-r-o-c-r-a-s-t-i-n-a-t-e).
Not many technical writers answer in Quora
This is a shame. To be more precise, the numbers show that not many technical writers answer Quora in the technical writing topics. It does show that almost 8,000 are following it, but I guess I was expecting it to be more popular, given the high quality of discourse between people in such a broad demographic. Even the topics by the most-viewed writer in Quora’s technical writing topics have had only 1,299 views in the past month. I suppose it could be because there are other forums that narrowcast to technical writers–LinkedIn’s professional writer forums are at least 2-3 times more subscribed, for example.
I like Quora for its variety of topics, variety of contributors, and how they all get along. I like Medium, for many of the same reasons. Even as a pastime, I don’t mind answering the occasional technical writing (a.k.a. work) question, but I just don’t see them that often. A quick review shows that I’ve answered 18 technical-writing posts in the past three years. Statistically, I seem to have more fun (or, perhaps, just more to say) about flying and aviation, in which I’ve written as many answers in the past six months. In fact, my most read post is about an in-flight emergency I had while flying with a friend.
If it takes an in-flight emergency, or something with that level of drama, to make a popular post, it doesn’t seem fair to compare flying to technical writing. Honestly, flying lends itself to those types of stories much more than technical writing does. In all my professional experience, I can’t recall one life-or-death experience as a technical writer, which isn’t a complaint, by the way.
Anyway, check out my posts in Technical Writing—for the content, of course, not just to put some breathing room between #11 and me.