Authoring in Neutral English

Scott Abel & Val Swisher - Guest Presenter: Shawn Prenzlow
How would you approach content development if your product was never going to be released in the writers’ native language? What might you start with? Colloquial English? Simplified English? Some other type of controlled language structure? We’ll interview Shawn Prenzlow, the Reluctant Strategist, about her experience doing just that: her experience creating a strategy for and successfully releasing a multi-product, multi-market, multi-channel content set at Microsoft – all of which was authored in Neutral English, a rarity for that company.

Shawn’s Bio:

Shawn Prenzlow is The Reluctant Strategist.

Shawn has more than 20 years of experience as a team manager and content strategist in technical content and executive communications.

Shawn’s first professional role was as a Director of Communications at a small non-profit organization. After two years of going it alone with only unpaid volunteer resources, she made a death-defying leap to Microsoft. For twelve years she grew there, clawing her way up from editor to Principal Content Manager. She is now the Senior Content Strategist at Steyer Associates, Inc., a premier staffing agency for the U.S. Tech Comms industry.

Shawn has led projects for a spectrum of audiences, including those as massive as Microsoft and its PC-manufacturing hardware and software partners, down to niche audiences of high-tech aerospace and non-profit organizations. Shawn is passionate about crafting the perfect strategy for each new project and client, creating deeply detailed project plans and budgets, and building creatively-sourced content teams that turn concepts into reality.

@RelStrategist

www.linkedin.com/in/shawnprenzlow/
Feb 20 2014
60 mins
Authoring in Neutral English
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  • Channel profile
  • Positioning Your Content for the Future: Leveraging Performance-Driven Content Jul 9 2015 5:00 pm UTC 60 mins
    Val Swisher, Scott Abel & Kevin Nichols, Director and Global Practice Lead for Content Strategy, SapientNitro
    How do I improve my content? What do I need to do with it? What content should I investment in? How do I know which content I should include in my marketing budget? How do determine when and how to evolve my content, adopt intelligent content solutions that will allow me to provide personalized, omni-channel content?

    These questions and more can be answered by taking a critical look at performance. Performance-driven content is the key to success in the modern content era. It’s content an organization measures and evaluates after it is published. From this evaluation, an organization can make informed business decisions about future content needs, approaches, and priorities. Done right, performance-driven content drives all future decisions within a content ecosystem. Brands that leverage performance-driven content reap tremendous benefits.
     
    This one-hour webinar, part of the #ScottAndValShow, will feature guest presenter, Kevin Nichols, Director and Global Practice Lead for Content Strategy at SapientNitro. This session is designed to help content professionals who want to build loyalty through social content, SEO, and content campaigns understand the importance of adopting a performance-driven content strategy.

    Attendees will learn how to construct a content strategy framework built around a performance-driven model. Kevin will reveal what this framework is, what is necessary to implement it, and the types of tools and governance structures required to support it. 

    10 Registrants Will Win A Free Copy of “Enterprise Content Strategy: A Project Guide”

    Register for this webinar and you’ll be entered into a drawing for one of ten free copies of Kevin P. Nichols’ “Enterprise Content Strategy: A Project Guide” (XML Press). The book outlines best practices for conducting and executing content strategy projects. It’s a step-by-step guide to building an enterprise content strategy for your organization.
  • DITA InPrint: Creating Well-Designed Technical Documentation Recorded: May 22 2014 59 mins
    Scott Abel, The Content Wrangler, and Val Swisher of Content Rules with Tim Grantham of Tengwar Systems
    Technical documents are often the ugly sibling of marketing and corporate communications. Written and produced by staff who typically have no training (or budget) for design, these crude-looking publications not only undermine the carefully crafted image created by the marketing team, they make it harder for customers to actually read and understand the valuable information they contain. The content coming out of the technical communication department is, more often than not, comprised of overcrowded pages loaded with eye-glazing graphics, incomprehensible typefaces, useless headings, bad pagination, and tiresome tables.

    But, it doesn't have to be this way. Even if you use DITA.

    Join Scott Abel, The Content Wrangler, and Val Swisher, CEO of Content Rules, for this free, one-hour webinar featuring XML design specialist, Tim Grantham, founder of Tengwar Systems. Tim will discuss the main reasons technical documentation is so ugly and reveal tips and tricks for making improvements that will delight your customers. He will also discuss his first software product, DITA InPrint™, which enables marketing and documentation teams to get great-looking outputs from DITA XML, quickly and easily, without having to learn to code or to hire programmers.
  • Ask the Experts – Structured Content and ROI Recorded: Apr 4 2014 61 mins
    Ann Rockley, founder of The Rockley Group, and Val Swisher, founder of Content Rules
    Thinking about a move to structured content? Want to find out how you can calculate your return on investment for the move? Look no further! Join Content Strategy experts Ann Rockley, founder of The Rockley Group, and Val Swisher, founder of Content Rules for an in-depth look at how to measure the potential ROI for moving to structured content.

    Ann and Val are well-known experts in the field of content strategy and global content strategy. They will present information that you can use to “make your case” for changing the environment in which your writers create and manage content.

    After a short presentation, Ann and Val will answer your questions about making the case for structured content. Submit your questions in advance here: http://www.contentrules.com/ask-experts-question-submission-form/
  • Authoring in Neutral English Recorded: Feb 20 2014 60 mins
    Scott Abel & Val Swisher - Guest Presenter: Shawn Prenzlow
    How would you approach content development if your product was never going to be released in the writers’ native language? What might you start with? Colloquial English? Simplified English? Some other type of controlled language structure? We’ll interview Shawn Prenzlow, the Reluctant Strategist, about her experience doing just that: her experience creating a strategy for and successfully releasing a multi-product, multi-market, multi-channel content set at Microsoft – all of which was authored in Neutral English, a rarity for that company.

    Shawn’s Bio:

    Shawn Prenzlow is The Reluctant Strategist.

    Shawn has more than 20 years of experience as a team manager and content strategist in technical content and executive communications.

    Shawn’s first professional role was as a Director of Communications at a small non-profit organization. After two years of going it alone with only unpaid volunteer resources, she made a death-defying leap to Microsoft. For twelve years she grew there, clawing her way up from editor to Principal Content Manager. She is now the Senior Content Strategist at Steyer Associates, Inc., a premier staffing agency for the U.S. Tech Comms industry.

    Shawn has led projects for a spectrum of audiences, including those as massive as Microsoft and its PC-manufacturing hardware and software partners, down to niche audiences of high-tech aerospace and non-profit organizations. Shawn is passionate about crafting the perfect strategy for each new project and client, creating deeply detailed project plans and budgets, and building creatively-sourced content teams that turn concepts into reality.

    @RelStrategist

    www.linkedin.com/in/shawnprenzlow/
  • Content Reuse: Getting Started Is Easy With Witty Parrot Recorded: Dec 13 2013 59 mins
    Scott Abel, The Content Wrangler, and Val Swisher of Content Rules with Corey Sommers and Anil Jwalanna of Witty Parrot
    Join Scott Abel, The Content Wrangler, and Val Swisher of Content Rules for a discussion about productivity through content reuse with Corey Sommers and Anil Jwalanna of Witty Parrot. Learn how content-heavy organizations are equipping their staffs with simple, easy-to-use software designed to help them produce consistent content and reuse it efficiently and effectively. A demonstration of the Witty Parrot software tool will be included.
  • Content Rules - Learn what we do in 90 seconds! Recorded: Dec 2 2013 2 mins
    Val Swisher, Founder and CEO
    Content Rules provides consulting guidance and professional services to companies across the entire content lifecycle. Our clients range from new technology startups to Fortune 100 companies in the high-tech, life sciences, medical device and manufacturing sectors. Our content development services include technical documentation, marketing collateral, and training development. We provide services using our large network of technically-astute consultants located in Silicon Valley and throughout the U.S. Our consulting practice specializes in content strategy, structured authoring, new publishing technologies and global readiness. Content Rules is a preferred implementation and services partner of Acrolinx, the leading content optimization software for the enterprise. We are the only authorized implementation partner for The Rockley Strategic Method™, from renowned content strategist Ann Rockley.
  • Collaborative Authoring: Use and Maintenance of a Multidisciplinary eTextBook Recorded: Sep 27 2013 59 mins
    Robert Glushko, University of California Berkeley, School of Information
    Description: A multi-disciplinary textbook faces the challenge of satisfying the need for breadth, to represent all the disciplines that contribute to it, without compromising the need for depth, to treat each contributing discipline in a substantive way. We met this challenge in a text called "The Discipline of Organizing" with several innovations in book design. The key idea was to write the book as a "core" text with hundreds of supplemental endnotes tagged by discipline, effectively creating a family of related texts suitable for different courses and perspectives. This book architecture lends itself to implementation in ebook formats, and it also implies a clear path for evolving the book and ebooks over time. In this session the lead author and editor of the textbook describes the processes and principles needed to create, deploy, and maintain it.

    About the Presenter: Robert J. Glushko is an Adjunct Full Professor at the University of California, Berkeley in the School of Information. Before coming to Berkeley in 2002, he spent a decade in Silicon Valley, where he founded or co-founded four companies in the areas of electronic publishing and e-business. He previously worked in corporate R&D and consulting, mostly at Bell Laboratories. He has a PhD in cognitive psychology from the University of California, San Diego and an MS in Software Engineering from the Wang Institute.
  • Improving Service Delivery by Making Technical Documentation Interactive Recorded: Jul 19 2013 58 mins
    Scott Abel, The Content Wrangler, and Val Swisher, CEO of Content Rules & Joe Jenkins of Oberon Technologies
    Typically, technical service documentation is static and encompasses many makes and models of equipment, meaning that once the information is published, it’s up to the technician/engineer to figure out how to find the information they need to properly service the equipment being worked on. Additionally, information that must be captured during the service procedure, such as instrument readings and technician notes, is often first captured on paper, then later entered manually into a separate computer system, an inefficient and error-prone process at best. Although this approach is typical across industries, it leaves significant opportunity for improvement for technical communication departments looking for ways to improve the customer experience, reduce costs, and increase productivity.

    Join Scott Abel, The Content Wrangler and Val Swisher, CEO of Content Rules, for a discussion about interactive documentation with Joe Jenkins of Oberon Technologies. The three will discuss how structured content, which many organizations already use to create technical documentation products, can be leveraged to make content more intelligent and more useful to those who need it. Attendees will learn how interactive documentation can help service-oriented businesses streamline manual tasks, automate transactions, and provide value traditional approaches cannot.
  • Moving From Passive to Interactive Video Experiences Recorded: Jun 21 2013 61 mins
    Scott Abel, The Content Wrangler, and Val Swisher, CEO of Content Rules & Mark B. Jacobs, CEO of Melbox Media
    Video. It’s useful in certain situations. For instance, it’s an excellent way to demonstrate how to do something (fix a flat tire, assemble a shelving unit, learn how to use software). But for all it’s utility, video fails to be as useful for some other types of communication. It’s often disconnected from other types of content. An island to itself.

    But, it doesn’t have to be that way. There are products on the market that turn video into a unique communication platform, one that expands the significance and value of video by combining it with other information assets, turning video into an active (rather than a passive) experience.

    Join Scott Abel, The Content Wrangler, and Val Swisher, CEO of Content Rules, Friday, June 21, 2013 at 10am PT/1pm ET for a discussion with interactive video expert, Mark B. Jacobs. The three will discuss how your organization can leverage innovative video technologies to deliver immersive content experiences that are far more valuable than video alone. A short demonstration of Me!Box video platform will be included.

    Guest: Mark Jacobs

    Biography: Mark B. Jacobs has spent 25 years successfully starting, revitalizing and building businesses. As a consultant and Managing Partner he built a successful consulting practice that focused on corporate revitalization. As a business owner he bought and led several companies back to profitability and growth, as well as starting me!box Media. He has authored over 20 articles on the subjects of the relationship between strategy, high value communication processes, organizational behavior, business process and change management, as well as the book Reality Leadership (Forbes 2000).

    Me!box Media, where Mark is CEO and co-founder, is authentication of his passion for high value communication processes.
  • Language Matters: How To Write Powerful Sentences & Paragraphs Recorded: May 17 2013 55 mins
    Scott Abel, The Content Wrangler, and Val Swisher, CEO of Content Rules & Marcia Riefer-Johnston
    Chances are, you’re a good writer who tries hard to follow the rules. But, every now and again, you run into language situations -- circumstances that make you question whether or not your recollection of the rules is serving you well.

    You’re not alone.

    Join Scott Abel, The Content Wrangler, and Val Swisher, CEO of Content Rules, Friday, May 17, 2013 at 10am PT/1pm ET for a discussion with wordsmith extraordinaire Marcia Riefer-Johnston about language rules that matter (as well as some that don’t). You’ll be delighted by Johnston’s entertaining view of language and stories about how we use it. And, you’ll be give the opportunity to pose questions about words and their usage to one of the writing industry’s best and brightest.


    Ten attendees will receive a free copy of Johnston’s recently released book, “Word Up! How To Write Powerful Sentences and Paragraphs (And Everything You Build From Them)”. The book is loaded with useful, practical advice for improving your writing by making good use of the rules that matter. It’s more than a book about grammar and writing. It’s a book designed to help you take command of the words you use and wield them in powerful ways.


    ABOUT MARCIA REIFER-JOHNSTON

    When Marcia was twelve, American Girl magazine printed her eight-paragraph story, "The Key," and paid her $15. She has been writing ever since. She has worked as a technical writer for 20+ years, including a stint teaching tech writing in the Engineering School at Cornell University. Her words have landed on billboards, blackboards, birthday cakes, boxes of eggs, and the back of her new book, "Word Up! How to Write Powerful Sentences and Paragraphs (and Everything You Build from Them)."
  • Secrets of a Media Star with Bonnie D. Graham Recorded: Mar 8 2013 62 mins
    Scott Abel, The Content Wrangler, and Val Swisher, CEO of Content Rules & Bonnie D Graham creator/producer/host/writer of mul
    Have you ever been invited to speak at a virtual or in-person event – webinar, radio, TV biz conference? Does the thought of having to present send a shiver down your spine or have you running for the nearest rock to hide under?

    Fear not! In this webinar, Bonnie Graham, creator/producer/host/writer of multiple radio shows, will share the secrets to being the next media star. We will talk about Bonnie’s experience in media, her tips and tricks, and some of her favorite tales.

    Join Scott Abel, The Content Wrangler, and Val Swisher, CEO of Content Rules as they ponder this and other topics with Bonnie. If you’ve ever heard Bonnie speak, you know that this will be a fun and very lively event!

    About Bonnie D. Graham:

    • SAP Game-changers Radio creator/producer/host/writer
    • Interviewed 196 guests on 2 SAP Radio series in first year
    • 18 years as TV & radio producer/host, charity MC, journalist
    • Helped thousands of guests shine as media stars
    • Passionate about showing you how to be a star
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  • Live at: Feb 20 2014 6:00 pm
  • Presented by: Scott Abel & Val Swisher - Guest Presenter: Shawn Prenzlow
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