You could write a LinuxDoc document without having any LinuxDoc software. However it's likely that it would contain some errors in the tags (or their use) so that it would be returned to you for correction. Even if there were no errors, the results likely would not look quite right. So it's best for you to have the software to convert your source code on your computer.
The Debian distribution of Linux has a linuxdoc-tools package. There is also a rpm package for non-Debian distributions. It was formerly called sgml-tools and version 1.0.9 (the final one) may still be useful if you can't get linuxdoc-tools. Don't use the sgmltools-2 package which is primarily for DocBook.
To use it, you run converter programs on the *.sgml files. For example, type: "sgml2txt -f my-HOWTO.sgml". To get html type: "sgml2html my-HOWTO.sgml". If it shows errors, it will show the line number and the column number where the error is in the source file. Typing "man -k sgml" should show you a number of other programs with a one-line description of each.