Interview with Doug Bierer


Doug Bierer is the author of Learn MongoDB 4.x, 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…

Doug: I was approached by one of the acquisitions editors who had seen my profile on LinkedIn and Github.

Q: How long did it take you to write the book?

Doug: The first book took a little over a year. The Quick Start guide took 3 months. The last book took about 18 months.

Q: What kind of research did you do, and how long did you spend researching before beginning the book?

Doug: The concepts for what I wanted to present in both PHP and MongoDB had already been formulated in my mind based upon work done for customers. When it came time to write I extrapolated my real world experiences into generic code examples that demonstrated core concepts. So there was no delay in starting to write the book.

Q: Did you face any challenges during the writing process? How did you overcome them?

Doug: My last book was extremely challenging in that I ended up going through two co-authors before finally having to finish it by myself. The main reason I engaged a co-author in the beginning was that, although having a strong grasp of MongoDB, I did not have the same level of mastery when it came to Python.

Q: What advice would you give to readers learning tech? Do you have any top tips?

Doug: First and foremost: get in and start *doing* it. There is no substitute for hands-on experience. I know many developers who spend months learning theory, but never get their hands on the technology. The second recommendation is to install Docker and start using it. Using Docker you can model just about any environment. It’s a great tool for those who do not have access to a computer lab, or a vast array of servers in a network. I was even able to model a cluster of 5 servers using Docker … on a laptop!

Q. How do you keep up-to-date on your tech?

Doug: Training, reading articles online and following key people on Twitter. Be careful with Twitter, however. There’s a lot of “chatter” so you need to weed out useful information.

Q. How would you describe you author journey with Packt? Would you recommend Packt to aspiring authors?

Doug: Packt is one of the best publishing companies I’ve written for. I’ve written for quite a few companies in the past, but the editors have been incredibly responsive to questions, and quick to help out with issues that arose. I would definitely recommend any potential author to work with Packt!

You can find Doug’s book on Amazon by following this link: Please click here

Learn MongoDB 4.x – Available on