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Corporate, PR, & Other Assorted Pixel-Pushing

It's not just the experience, it's also the company you keep. Here's an overview of tech-sector, PR, and similar work that has been my pleasure to provide. This isn't an exhaustive list, though it hits some favorite highlights.

High-tech dancin' in the silicon follies

RealNetworks hired me to provide lots of writing and editing on some big projects. Not thrilling, but the company and its culture are relaxed, enjoyable, and creative, and it indirectly led to my writing for

Where the money is

I've been a head writer for two consumer technology companies. These two companies could not be more different in every way that's truly important.

WebMD is the leading provider of online personal health management tools and info, one of the fastest growing, most interesting Internet fields going. And it's one of the most enjoyable places to work I've yet experienced.

For six years as the Senior Writer/Editor in the Portland office's Creative Services dept., I had professional fingers in a number of pies there — creative and managerial lead on the authoring of clear, appealing and compelling public content, marketing communication efforts, and so on. In particular I was the head writer/editor for the company's first wave of interactive, individualized, private online Lifestyle and Behavior Modification programs and tools. That had me working in a journalistic, interpretive capacity to research, compose and communicate health management information, a worthwhile extension of my writing in other educational, general public arenas. I managed projects from inception to completion, oversaw input from various sources, and partnered with doctors, SMEs, and other internal and external resources. I worked in close cooperation with product management, editorial, development, marketing, design and QA teams to develop online media, print, TV, collateral, brand enforcement and other content. My work was aimed at real people like you and me, and involved subjects that interest me personally, such as personal health and well-being and advances in preventive, traditional, and alternative/complementary health care.

Plus, my coworkers there were fun and interesting and had lives outside the company, management philosophies were progressive and inclusive, the stock options were certain to pay off (they did), and the location near Portland's Chinatown district enhanced the "business lunch" possibilities considerably. And it was only a short walk to Powell's City of Books. What's not to love?

e-writing Before that, well, let's simply note that while it existed (it's now part of the pixel-heap of late '90s history) I had an office high above downtown Portland, with windows that provided views of Mt. Hood, Mt. St. Helens, and the Cascade Range. However...

  1. Imagine every Dilbert cartoon you've ever read.
  2. Discard the ones you actually thought were funny.

If ever there was proof that "corporate culture" is an oxymoron, there it was. No matter. A certain over-lauded bubble burst. Pipedreams clogged. Doors closed. The moving finger writes, and, having writ, moves on.

PR, Marketing, Communications

  • At WebMD, I worked closely with the Marketing department crafting marketing and communications materials. These include co-directing multimedia projects such as Flash videos, email and online banner promotions, collateral and brand enforcement. External clients included Starbucks, Dell, PepsiCo, UAW-Ford, Blue Cross Blue Shield and Wells Fargo.

  • As media liaison for the Strasenburgh Planetarium (Rochester, NY), I composed press releases and communicated news information to local media outlets. I also had the great fun of being a science correspondent for Rochester, NY-area television stations, including the public broadcasting network. Featured as "guest expert" in news specials during the launch and deployment of the Hubble Space Telescope. Special guest on the Ranger Bob children's TV show, Rochester.

  • Similarly, at Portland's Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, I composed press releases, helped provide topical information to media outlets, and appeared on Portland-area TV news programs covering topics such as the Perseid Meteor Shower, solar eclipses, and the repair of the Hubble Space Telescope.

  • For Preview Systems, I served as a writer and editor for the Marketing/Communications department. During Preview's startup phase, among my projects was spearheading, Preview's reference site for the Electronic Software Distribution industry and the industry's first webzine. Working with a production team and interdepartmental resources, I wrote and edited textual content, contributed to design and layout, and helped maintain the company's web presence.

    Magazine articles

    I've written numerous articles, both features and smaller pieces, for venues such as OMSI Magazine, Outdoor News, Gannett newspapers, Omaha Arts Weekly, and others. A list and copies are available on request.