Writing and editing are requirements of some desktop publishing jobs
. If you want to expand your skill set and broaden your job opportunities, learning how to write is one way to do that.
Additionally, a background in and knowledge of a specialized field such as desktop publishing, could lead to employment as a writer — if the writing skill is there. Improve your writing and look at three markets that could combine desktop publishing and writing.
© J. Howard Bear
You may know how to create beautiful hanging punctuation
or how to finetune the spacing of an ellipsis
, but do you know the ins and outs of using commas, periods, semi-colons, and other punctuation marks? Writing isn't entirely about stringing a bunch of words together.
You may have learned about the "correct or incorrect use of language" in school but how much do you remember? Writing and editing both require a knowledge of both descriptive and prescriptive grammar.
You may get away with the excuse of being in a hurry when typos and misspelled words crop up in phone text messages or comments you post on blogs. But that excuse doesn't fly when you're communicating with clients and potential clients through your Web site and your printed marketing materials. Spelling is a design issue when it interferes with communication and makes you look bad.
What and how much you read, your speech, the act of writing, and the detail you put into your writing all influence how you express yourself.
© J. Howard Bear
Many freelance desktop publishers get their first experience doing copywriting by writing the text of their own brochures or marketing newsletters. Offering copywriting services to small businesses along with designing advertising materials such as brochures and direct mail pieces is one way to combine writing and desktop publishing.
If your personal desktop publishing library is anything like mine, you've read a lot of books on software, graphic design, typography, and page layout. One way to combine your technical expertise with writing is by writing book reviews.
You already know the technical aspects of book design
, now write the book. From creating a great book index to writing a user's manual, there are many ways to combine your desktop publishing skills with technical writing.