Julien Simon is the author of Learn Amazon SageMaker, we got the chance to sit down with him and find out more about his experience of writing with Packt.
Q: How did you become an author for Packt? Tell us about your journey.
Julien: I was contacted by a friendly Packt editor, who asked me if I was interested in writing a book on SageMaker. I had turned down book offers proposals before, because my travel schedule was too heavy, but COVID-19 lockdown forced me to stay home for a while. This gave me the time I needed to write a book, and I accepted the offer!
Q: How long did it take you to write the book?
Julien: It took me a little less than 3 months, working full time on the text and code.
Q: What kind of research did you do, and how long did you spend researching before beginning the book?
Julien: I’ve been working for AWS for 5 years, focusing on SageMaker for about 3 years. It’s fair to say I was in well-known territory. Most of the book was written in my head, so it was more a case of putting everything on paper and writing code samples.
Q: Did you face any challenges during the writing process? How did you overcome them?
Julien: Not really. The Packt team was very easy to work with, and they provided excellent feedback during the writing process. As some of my examples are pretty involved, I did hit a few tricky bugs, but my engineering colleagues quickly fixed them.
Q: What advice would you give to readers learning tech? Do you have any top tips?
Julien: Learning should be part of your daily routine, just like physical exercise! You should set time aside to read, if only a few pages, and to run code samples. I encourage you to tweak, experiment, and leave no stone unturned. Be curious and don’t let go until you really understand how things work.
Q. How do you keep up-to-date on your tech?
Julien: Blogs and books, mostly. Nothing beats the depth of quality written content. Long-form videos can be useful too, like conference and university talks.
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?
Julien: AWS blogs: https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/aws/ , https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/machine-learning/
Applied ML blogs: https://machinelearningmastery.com/ , http://francescopochetti.com/ , https://cosminsanda.com/
Research ML blogs: https://ruder.io/ , http://www.offconvex.org/ , https://thegradient.pub/
Q. How would you describe your author journey with Packt? Would you recommend Packt to aspiring authors?
Julien: It was very smooth. I never thought writing a tech book would be this simple. I’d definitely recommend Packt to other authors.
You can find Julien’s book on Amazon by following this link: Please click here