GBBP 100: Brad Meltzer

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The Great Big Beautiful Podcast, Episode 100: Brad Meltzer

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100 episodes. I kind of can’t believe it. I mean…I can. I know how much work it took to get to this point, but it’s still pretty remarkable. So it was an absolute thrill when we realized how fortuitous this episode would be. Episode 100. Election Day. Brad Meltzer. It’s all kinds of perfect.

Meltzer is not only the self-described “greatest criminal mind of our time” but also one of the hardest-working guys around. He’s written nearly a dozen best-selling political thrillers (among them The Tenth Justice, The Book of Lies, and The House of Secrets). He’s writing the phenomenal I Am… series of kids books (with art by Chris Eliopoulos). He wrote the beautiful Heroes for my Son and Heroes for my DaughterHe’s written some truly landmark graphic novels, including Identity Crisis and a run on Justice League.

And on top of all of his writing, he’s hosted Decoded and Lost History for The History Channel. He found the original 9/11 flag from the World Trade Center site (now on display at the National September 11 Memorial & Museum). He saved and restored Jerry Siegel’s house: the place where Superman was born. He’s been a consultant for the real-life Department of Homeland Security. He gave two TED talks. He won an Eisner Award. He’s met at least four presidents (of the United States), who are all fans of his work. He dressed as Lucille Ball and reenacted the chocolate scene with First Lady Barbara Bush.

And he’s about to publish a book about the life of Jim Henson. Which pushes him over the edge into a proper legend, as far as we’re concerned.

On this episode, we talk about working through failure (he garnered 24 rejection letters for his first novel), perspective and self-doubt, the I Am… books and why “ordinary people” have such extraordinary stories, Jim Henson and Mister Rogers, what he’s most proud of in a career that almost defies belief, whether he could have imagined the events that actually took place during this presidential election, and where we go – as a country and people – now that this historic election is behind us.


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