Ben Fountain

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Ben Fountain joins us this week. We’ll be talking about his award-winning book, BILLY LYNN’S LONG HALFTIME WALK. The movie based on the book was released last month by Sony Pictures.

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Ben FountainBen Fountain‘s debut novel, BILLY LYNN’S LONG HALFTIME WALK (Harper Collins, 2012) is a New York Times best seller. It won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Fiction and the Los Angeles Times Book Award for Fiction. The book was also a finalist for the National Book Award, and  runner-up for the Dayton Literary Peace Prize.

Billy Lynn's Long Halftime WalkSony Pictures has turned BILLY LYNN’S LONG HALFTIME WALK  into motion picture based on the book, directed by two-time Oscar winning director, Ang Lee. 

Ben has received many writing awards including a PEN/Hemingway award for his book, Brief Encounters with Che Guevara: Stories (Harper Collins, 2007). He is a two-time winner of the O. Henry Award and the Pushcart Prize, the Barnes & Noble Discover Award for Fiction, and a Whiting Writers’ Award. A member of the Texas Institute of Letters, Ben is a three-time winner of its Short Story Award.

Ben holds a B.A. in English from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a law degree from the Duke University School of Law.  His fiction has appeared in Harper’s, The Paris Review, Esquire Magazine, The Year’s Best, and Zoetrope: All Story. His nonfiction has appeared in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Texas Monthly, and The New York Times Sunday Magazine, among other publications, and his reportage on post-earthquake Haiti was broadcast  nationally on the radio show This American Life.  The Guardian recently published a series of his essays on the national political scene and U.S. presidential election.

From 2014 – 2016, Ben was the University Chair in Creative Writing at Texas State University and this fall, he joined the Michener Center for Writers at the University of Texas as a visiting professor.  He is soon returning to live in Dallas.


Ben Fountain explores the lives of eight fictional veterans known as the Bravo Squad, who, after defeating an elite force of enemy insurgents, come home from Iraq to find themselves national heroes. The Bush Administration sends them on a “Victory Tour” that culminates in a live broadcast at the Dallas Cowboys’ Thanksgiving Day game, which inevitably goes awry. Among other adventures, the Bravo Squad will be guests of honor in the suite of Cowboys owner Norman Oglesby, mix and mingle with some of the nation’s wealthiest individuals, share center stage with Destiny’s Child during the halftime extravaganza, and, ultimately shed light on our modern culture’s fascination with wealth, politics and militarism. —Harper Collins Speakers Bureau