From Sonnets to Software: Putting the I.T. in Writer


As a young-twenty-something who is new to the I.T. world and to Corporate America in general, I had more than a few reservations about my first day on the job. Although I am typically a rather confident, collected individual, I kept entertaining the notions of this timid, unsure person whom I thought I lost long ago. “But, I don’t have a background in technology,” the voice insisted. As if that wasn’t enough to induce a twinge of anxiety, the voice continued, “Come to think of it, I don’t have a business background either.” I tossed and turned the night before my first day, wondering if I was kidding myself, if I should just abandon the entire ordeal altogether to spare myself any unnecessary humiliation.

After braving the dreaded Suburban traffic, which is routinely and yet always surprisingly dense, I arrived at my destination. I sat in my car for a few minutes, trying to ignore that bothersome voice that kept chiming in without warning. “You have an Arts Degree. You aren’t going to fit in here.” I allowed this to sink in for a moment, before reasoning, “Perhaps, but I can write. I’m a creative soul. I have much to say, and I know precisely how to say it.” With this renewed confidence in mind, I got out of my car, crossed the pollen-dusted parking lot with a spring in my step, and walked in The Corporate Lobby.

A friendly receptionist greeted me with a swift handshake and a folder containing several Forms to Complete. Before I knew it, I was meeting People in Suits with Staggering Amounts of Experience in Super-Specialized-Technical Fields, and I found myself at a loss for words. I was intimidated, yes, but I was also fascinated. I smiled politely while trying to keep my eyes from glossing over from the overwhelming amount of information.

Although everyone I met was incredibly pleasant and welcoming, that irksome voice began to speak up again, reminding me of my lack of experience, my affinity for words rather than numbers, and even my preference for Apple products. “What am I doing here?” it asked. “Seriously, there must be some mistake.”

I made my way to my new cubicle, navigating the maze of boxed workspaces, slightly downcast yet trying to remain optimistic. I sat down in a swivel chair, facing the corner of two undecorated, gray walls that did nothing to brighten my mood. As grateful as I was for the opportunity, I was beginning to wonder if and how I would find a way to contribute to this company.

Almost immediately, a stack of documents materialized on my desk, and a mass of emails began to flood my inbox. Press Releases, Employee Guidelines, Statements of Work, Website Content, and Company Blogs were among the files, all of which needed to be edited and polished as soon as possible.

I smiled, uncapped my red pen, and got to work.


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