Ben Thompson

Ben Thompson is the author of twelve books on various awesome historical subjects, including the Guts & Glory and Epic Fails series, and has been a popular history blogger for over fourteen years. He has appeared on television programs for The History Channel, Discovery, and The American Heroes Channel, given talks and presentations at dozens of schools, conferences, and conventions, occasionally runs a podcast and a YouTube channel, and has appeared in print articles for outlets such as Cracked, Fangoria, Soldier of Fortune, and The American Mustache Institute. Ben’s work received awards from the National Parenting Publications, the International Literary Organization, and the Parent’s Choice Group, but the thing he’s the most proud of is that he can occasionally beat the Star Wars Trilogy arcade game with a single quarter.

Ben Thompson Website
Most Recent Book
The Wright Brothers: Nose-Diving into History book


What does a typical work day look like for you?

I wake up at 5am and write for a couple hours, then go to my regular average day job, and then after that I try to come home and do fun stuff to relax -- I like skiing, playing volleyball and softball, rock climbing, and video games, and I have a weekly Dungeons & Dragons game that I never miss!

What do you do when you're in need of some inspiration?

Inspiration is hard to find but can be tough to hold on to... before writing, I like to sit and think about all the cool stuff associated with the thing I'm writing so that I can get myself super pumped-up to write about it.

Do you have any upcoming books you can tell us about?

Yes! We have two more Epic Fails on the horizon, and they should be out in 2019!

What is the biggest challenge you face when writing/illustrating a children's book?

Because I write history, it can be tough to try to make things interesting and fun, but also keep true to the real stories -- I don't want to change the tales around or make up stuff, but I also really need to be sure that I'm making this stuff exciting and not super mind-numbingly boring!

When is your favorite time to work?

I like to wake up early and write first thing in the morning. If I put it off to later in the day I keep finding good excuses to procrastinate and not get it done :)

What is a goal you'd like to accomplish, either within the field of children's literature, or outside it?

I don't have a specific one, but I just want to always be pushing myself to do bigger and better things! It's easy to sit back and be like "well, I did that thing, I guess now I can relax," but I much prefer to look at it and be like, "ok, now how can I do better?"

chapter Books

courage · coping with failure · history
The Wright Brothers: Nose-Diving into History
America · outer space · coping with failure
The Race to Space: Countdown to Liftoff
historical figures · America
Guts & Glory: The American Revolution


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