I love learning new things. One of the reasons I started this blog was so that I could capture some of the things I’ve learned, but also so that I could learn more effectively. I have always found that for me one of the best ways to learn is by explaining the thing I’m learning to others. Blogging has allowed me to hone and deepen my thinking on a lot of things related to testing.
In the last couple of years I have also branched out into learning and teaching with video courses. I’ve made courses on a number of different testing related topics, and in the process of doing that have been able to learn a lot.
Last year Packt Publishing approached me about writing a book on API testing with Postman. I had published a video course about this with them previously, but writing a book is a lot of work so I said I would have to decline. However, after thinking about it a bit more and discussing it with my manager, we worked out an agreement where I would be able to go down to 4 days a week at work so that I would have the time to work on the book.
Writing a book!
I have to say, writing a book really is a LOT of work. I was already fairly familiar with Postman and API testing, but in the course of writing the book I found I had to really dive deep into some areas. When you dive deep into something you start to discover that there is a lot that you don’t know yet. I had to learn new things and struggle through fundamental concepts. I wanted to make sure that I understood what was going on at a deep level so that I could clearly and simply explain it in the book.
I also spent a lot of time coming up with practical examples. Things that the readers can do on their own. Books are great. I read 3 or 4 books a month and I think books are probably the biggest bang for your buck that you can get when it comes to learning. However, as the ancient Greek philosoper Epictetus said “Books are the training weights of the mind. They are very helpful, but it would be a bad mistake to suppose that one has made progress simply by having internalized their contents.” You can’t just read a book and think that you know the subject. You need to internalize it’s contents. With technical books like this one, I think that is best done by working through the subject on your own. To that end, I have numerous challenges and worked examples that help the readers internalize what they are learning.
Writing a book was certainly a tough and challenging endeavor, but it was also a helpful part of my ongoing quest to be a life-long learner. I learned a lot, and I find myself working on some new things at work that come directly out of the things that I learned. I hope that if you read the book, you find that you are able to learn a lot too!
I’ve not only been learning new things about API testing, I’ve also been learning about how book publishing works. One of the things that is important with new books is to get some reviews. In light of that, the publisher has a few free copies available in exchange for your honest review of the book. If you are interested in that, feel free to reach out to me on twitter, or LinkedIn or feel free to send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll see if I can get you a free copy.
The book is called API Testing and Development with Postman and it is coming out on May 7th (2021). If you do pick it up, let me know what you think! I hope it is helpful.
I guess in a way I have been an author for a long time. I’ve been blogging for many years, and I have published a lot of video courses, but there is something about writing a book that makes me feel like I can now actually call myself an author. Damion Synadinos, has a talk called More Than That, where he talks about the different ways that we label ourselves. Well, I feel like now I have applied a new label to myself. I’m an author.
I guess I better go update my LinkedIn profile.