Writing Day

Writing Day

Each year we run an event called the Writing Day during the conference. This event is modeled after the concept of sprints, which are common in open-source conferences. The main premise is to get a bunch of interesting people in a room together and have them work towards shared goals.

To make the most out of the Writing Day, we recommend that you either come with a project, or be ready and willing to contribute to someone else’s project.

Here are some examples of projects that you might want to work on:

  • Open source software documentation
  • General documentation writing
  • Best practices manual (For your company, or the world)
  • Blog posts
  • Tips and tricks
  • Great works of fiction
  • Love letters
  • The Documentarian Manifesto

You get the idea.

All this adds up to a room full of smart people sharing your problems, your passion, and your goals. So be ready to learn some new things and to teach others what you know.

Even if you feel as though you don’t know that much, we know you have a lot to offer. Come surprise yourself with how much you can share.

Documenting a new project?

Check out our beginners guide to writing documentation. This should help you get started, and give you some ideas for how you can contribute to a project that you love.


Please bring a computer or some other mechanism with which to create written words. We’ll be creating and editing content, so make sure that you have the tools you need to contribute.


  • Date & Time: Sunday, April 25, 9:30-17:00 Pacific Time.
  • Location: Online conference platform.

Your Project Here

The Good Docs Project

The Good Docs Project is an open source community of technical writers, doc tools experts, and software engineers who are committed to improving the quality of documentation in open source by creating the templates, tools, and resources to empower everyone to create great docs. Come visit our table at Writing Days to provide feedback and collaborate with some of our working group captains on some of our key 2021 initiatives:

  • Templates for community docs - Every open source community should have some baseline community documentation like a good README, Contributing Guide, PR and issue templates, Code of Conduct, etc. Come provide feedback and suggest improvements on our drafts of templates for some of these core community docs.
  • Docs advocacy and education - Part of improving docs in open source is getting buy-in from developers about why docs matter and the best practices. Come see our proof of concept storyboards and discuss some of our ideas for an ongoing series of short videos that will promote documentation fundamentals and best practices.
  • Easy button for docs setup - One of the biggest hurdles to creating good documentation is setting up your initial documentation toolchain. Come collaborate with our docs tool experts who are working on creating a Hugo/Docsy repository that can be easily cloned to set up a new documentation system for a project.
  • Industrial fiction - Our goal is to provide good examples of our project’s templates being used in an actual project. To accomplish this goal, we’re creating our own fake open source project that can be used to generate documentation examples. Come help us build both the world and the documentation for The Chronologue, a fake open source tool that helps future time travelers sync their clocks across multiple dimensions.

Trino project

Trino is a fast distributed SQL query engine for big data analytics. We’re excited to join you Write the Docs. This is our first Writing Day! We’ll have Trino enthusiasts available to help you get started. We even made a get started video to help you begin your journey as a Trino contributor.

Here are a few ways you can contribute to the Trino open source docs:

  • Review our doc readme perfect for first time contributors.
  • Improve our docs, we made an issues filter to help you find ways to contribute.
    • Edit an existing document, perfect for first time contributors.
    • Add terms to our glossary, perfect for first time contributors.
    • Add missing feature info in existing docs.
  • Test our docs and provide feedback.

We love new community members. Join us on the Trino Slack on the #documentation channel and favorite the Trino project on GitHub.

Write the Docs Meetups

Organizing local Write the Docs meetup communities is a rewarding way to participate. During Writing Day, we’ll have a table where we can share tips and best practices, especially in this time where all of our meetups are virtual.

GitLab - Learn how to contribute to our open-source docs

GitLab is a DevOps platform for the entire software development lifecycle. GitLab has everything from project planning and source code management to CI/CD, monitoring, and security.

Our documentation is open source and everyone can contribute. All the content is hosted on GitLab.com, so you will need a GitLab.com account to get started.

For more information, see our GitLab issue.

When you find an issue you want to work on:

  1. Create a merge request with your proposed changes.
  2. Reach out to one of the GitLab Team Members available during Writing Day, either in Hopin or in Slack.

The merge request, if acceptable, will be merged during the Writing Day session or in the following days.

After your merge request is reviewed and merged, it will appear on the docs site shortly!

If you have any questions, you can reach out to us in Hopin or in Slack: @selhorn, @amyq, @arty-chan, @mikejang.

Write the Docs Style Guides Project

The Write the Docs Style Guides is a growing collection of resources. This guide includes standards for writing and designing content and links to external resources.

Our Style Guide project goal is to improve this guide. Areas of focus include content restructuring, evaluating the content, and curating the external resource links.

Are you passionate about style guides? Do you want to learn more about them? Do you have browser bookmarks that you visit as you work (like I do)?

Experienced or early career, you’re welcome join us on this “let’s make an awesome style guide resource” journey. It’s our (my) first writing day project, so we’ll learn together.


Questions? Reach out in Hopin or in Slack: @barriebyron and @jrondeau.

During the conference

Check out the Writing Day Cheat Sheet for a quick reference that you can use during the conference to make the most out of Writing Day.