Now that you’ve read my description of what goes into a documentation plan, you can download a blank version of the format I use to see one way in which you can put all of this together. Most of the comments in the individual posts are in the documentation plan. In some cases, I’ve added samples from a real book proposal. As I’ve said, this format works well for both book proposals and for technical writing projects with very minor adjustments.
Regardless of whether you use my format or build your own, I encourage you to use a standard documentation plan template. As you identify the elements you want to use in your documentation plans, you can tailor the template to your needs.
The advantages of using a standardized template are that you get used to the types of information you need to supply as well as being able to create a documentation plan quickly and easily. In addition, if you have all the topics in your template, you won’t miss anything that should be there. This template has everything I’ve been able to think of that I’d ever need. To create a complete plan, I just run down the items in the template. When everything’s filled in, the proposal’s ready to send out. (By the way, if you find that you’ve added something to this, please let me know. I’m always interested in ways to update my template.)
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