Ravi Mishra is the author of HashiCorp Infrastructure Automation Certification Guide, 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)?
Ravi: Cloud and DevOps
Q: How did you become an author for Packt? Tell us about your journey. What was your motivation for writing this book?
Ravi: Actually, writing a book on advanced technology had been on my mind for a long time. I was looking for the publisher when my friend who had already written a book suggested that I approach Packt. So, I went to the Packt website and submitted my thoughts about different DevOps technologies like Ansible, Kubernetes, and Terraform, all in just one book. When I got a call from Mr. Vijin from Packt, I proposed that we should write something on Infrastructure as a Code i.e. on Terraform and that’s how things began. I started drafting all the core concepts of Terraform and finally managed to finish this book HashiCorp Infrastructure Certification Guide.
Q: What kind of research did you do, and how long did you spend researching before beginning the book?
Ravi: I have hands-on experience with Terraform and knowledge of working with multi-cloud. So, it just helped me to take things forward. It took me around 6-7 months to complete writing this book.
Q: Did you face any challenges during the writing process? How did you overcome them?
While writing this book, I faced many challenges like:
i) Initially, when I started writing the first chapter, it took me a while to figure out how to best explain the concepts that were already available on the internet. The Packt Team suggested that I break the concepts down and explain them in my own words. Then I started investing my time learning from the internet and then going a step ahead and describing things in a way that was easier to understand.
ii) Writing the Terraform code was a challenging task that too for three different cloud providers – AWS, Azure, and GCP. I started writing down some basic services and then invested quite a good amount of time to write complex modules and Stacks as well.
iii) Getting three cloud provider subscriptions was a task. I had an active Azure subscription but not AWS and Google. So, I managed to use a free trial account on Google and AWS, which helped me take things forward seamlessly.
iv) Coordination with Technical Reviewer was also very challenging. Since we are covering three cloud services, there was quite some overlap in the book. The reviewers suggested we avoid repetition, so I had to come up with ways to give the readers an idea of how Terraform can work with different clouds without repeating most of those parts.
Q: What’s your take on the technologies discussed in the book? Where do you see these technologies heading in the future?
Ravi: This book is based on the latest version of Terraform i.e. 1.0.0. There is a huge demand for Infrastructure as a Code in the market and everyone is looking for automation. Terraform will help users to deploy their enterprise infrastructure.
Q: Why should readers choose this book over others already on the market? How would you differentiate your book from its competition?
Ravi: This book has been written in such a way that you’ll feel like the trainer (me) is sitting in front of you and guiding you on how to do the next step. This book is quite different from other Terraform books as it is the only book that covers all the three major clouds i.e. Azure, AWS, GCP. So irrespective if the cloud you use, you’ll learn how to manage your cloud infrastructure using Terraform.
Q. What are the key takeaways you want readers to come away from the book with?
Ravi: Learn about the enterprise infrastructure deployment using Terraform v1.0.0
Write Terraform configuration files in both formats i.e. HCL and JSON
Prepare the Terraform stack using all the Terraform modules or other Terraform configuration files
Terraform Enterprise product overview and its use cases
Policy as a code, Terraform Sentinel product overview, and its use case
Q. What advice would you give to readers learning tech? Do you have any top tips?
Just go with flow. It will be simple for you to understand and grasp the whole concept. Start with basics of Terraform, and once you start getting comfortable with it, start going deeper
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?
Ravi: Yes, it was fantastic, got tremendous support from all the Packt team. It is not so easy to go back and forth and perform editing but the Packt team did it very smoothly. I am happy to recommend Packt to other authors as well. So, for any who wishes to write their book and get it published, Packt would be the right choice
Q. Do you belong to any tech community groups?
Microsoft Cloud Community.
AWS community Group
Microsoft MCT Group
Google community Group
Q. What are your favorite tech journals? How do you keep yourself up to date on tech?
Generally, as part of the MCT community of Microsoft, I keep on getting updates on the latest things happening in the cloud industry, especially in Microsoft Azure.
Similarly, I am also a part of several other community groups that help me keep up with what’s new and coming up in the cloud or DevOps domain
Q. How did you organize, plan, and prioritize your work and write the book?
Ravi: This is toughest question for me to answer. I’ve worked from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. in my office and then managed to spend at least 3-4 hours daily to write this book.
Q. What is that one writing tip that you found most crucial and would like to share with aspiring authors?
Ravi: When you’re writing about something, you’ll often find yourself not being able to continue writing further and would even want to give up, but that is when you need to encourage yourself to complete it. So, for any author, it is really essential that they should have strong determination and dedication for success
You can find Ravi’s book on Amazon by following this link: Please click here