David is the one of the authors of ‘Go for DevOps‘. We got the chance to sit down with him and find out more about his experience of writing with Packt.
Q. What is/are your specialist tech area(s)?
David: Golang, Kubernetes, Web Assembly, DevOps, Distributed Systems, Cloud, Azure
Q: How did you become an author for Packt? Tell us about your journey. What was your motivation for writing this book?
David: I became an author for Packt rather by accident. Although, I had occasionally toyed with the idea of writing a book, I never felt prepared to dedicate the time and effort needed to guide a book from ideation to completion individually. When John approached me to write “Go for DevOps”, I was hesitant to commit. Initially, I said no. However, as I reflected on our friendship and John’s consistent dedication and fortitude to see a project to completion, I was instilled with confidence that we could complete the book together. My mind changed, and upon his next request, I enthusiastically said “Let’s go!”.
Q: What kind of research did you do, and how long did you spend researching before beginning the book?
David: The majority of this book was written from experiences John and I have accumulated over our careers. Much of the research we did was focused on a competitive analysis of other DevOps books focused on the application of a given language. We read multiple of these books. We found some common topics of focus and determined the corpus we’d need to cover at the core. We also used the research to determine where we could differentiate “Go for DevOps”, so it wasn’t simply another language book for applying DevOps practices.
Q: Did you face any challenges during the writing process? How did you overcome them?
David: The largest challenge for me was trying to find a balance between work, the book, and life, unfortunately, in that order. During the book, I changed roles at Microsoft, which included increased responsibility and time commitment. This increased time commitment at work required me to decrease commitments in other parts of life. I found myself spending many late nights and weekends working on the book.
Q. What’s your take on the technologies discussed in the book? Where do you see these technologies heading in the future?
David: DevOps and Golang are foundational to modern development. It’s difficult to look at the cloud native space and not see the impact of the language or the practices in all that we do. No doubt the concepts and practices in DevOps will evolve, but I believe that will be a natural progression of increased productivity by continually shaving away all of the extraneous bits of process until we reach the leanest, most agile form.
Q: Why should readers choose this book over others already on the market? How would you differentiate your book from its competition?
David: Golang powers almost all of the cloud native DevOps tooling of the work such as Kubernetes, Terraform, Packer, Docker, and many others. Learning how to leverage Golang to achieve DevOps goals from John and my contrasting but coherent perspectives of both bespoke systems tooling and high-level application extension and integration will empower readers to understand to how build tooling from scratch while also being able to extend tooling to serve a broad range of task. This book broad in scope and provides deep insight into how to solve real-world problems.
Q: What advice would you give to readers learning tech? Do you have any top tips?
David: You’re going to have sticking points. Some days you are going to have a tough time getting your code to compile and your tests to pass. Find solace in the fact that we all have those day, John and I included. All we can do is consistently apply ourselves to try to improve each day, and humbly help other around us to do the same.
Q. What are the key takeaways you want readers to come away from the book with?
David: You can build tooling from first principles with Golang, but you can also stand on the shoulders of open-source giants extending other project to solve complex infrastructure and automation challenges.
Q. Do you have a blog that readers can follow?
Q. Can you share any blogs, websites and forums to help readers gain a holistic view of the tech they are learning?
Q. How would you describe your author journey with Packt? Would you recommend Packt to aspiring authors?
David: Packt has been a great partner. Being that this was our first book, we entered into what was a marathon with little preparation. If you know what it’s like to run a marathon, it usually entails quite a bit of preparation. Thankfully, the team at Packt guided us along the way, and helped us to reach our goals through encouragement, applied structure, and the occasional gentle nudge. If you are thinking about writing a book, you will be in good hands with these folks.
Q. How did you organize, plan, and prioritize your work and write the book?
David: We started out with an intro for the book we wanted to write mostly providing the reason for why we thought it would be impactful. After we felt like we had a solid premise for the book, we researched others in the space and built out a table of contents. The table of contents provided the majority of the content organization. Working with he Packt team we determined a schedule for content, and prioritized the most impactful content first, selecting the chapters we thought would be most interesting to a reader and the most complex to distill.
Q. What is that one writing tip that you found most crucial and would like to share with aspiring authors?
David: Manage your time effectively. Schedule time for you write daily, and do it. Even if you are going to throw away what you wrote, just get something down on the page. Blank pages find a way of staying blank longer than it takes to add one more word.
Q. What are your favourite tech journals?
David: Foundation and W3C
Q. Do you belong to any tech community groups?
David: Cloud Native Computing Foundation and W3C
You can find David’s book on Amazon by following this link: Please click here.