Here’s Why I Can’t Answer Certain Questions You Have About My Books

Hi everyone –

I have been deluged with questions since Spy School Revolution came out, and while I have been doing my best to answer them, I have noticed that there are categories of questions that come up again and again.  So rather than answering them repeatedly, I figured I’d try to address them in a blog post.

Category One:  Questions about what is going to happen in future books

This is the type of question I get asked the most and there’s a simple reason why I feel it would be better not to answer them: Because it will ruin future surprises in the books for you — and this ruin some of the fun of reading those books.

You hate spoilers, right?  Well, asking me to tell you who Ben Ripley will end up with — or whether or not a character you like is going to reappear in a future book — or really anything about the future of any series — is asking me to spoil something for you.  I know you want to find out what’s in store, but I promise you, the less you know about what’s coming, the more fun the read will be.

Category Two: Questions about things that didn’t get answered in the books

If I didn’t share a piece of information with you in the book, that wasn’t an oversight.  It’s because I didn’t want to share that piece of information.  Often, this is because I’m saving it to reveal in another book.

For example, I know there are some questions left at the end of SSR.  But if I had wanted to answer those questions, I would have.  I promise, they will eventually be answered — although I think most of you could probably make very educated guesses about what happened.

Category Three: Questions about obscure things

And author can’t possibly tell you every single thing that happened to every single character over the course of their lives.  Honestly, we can’t possibly even imagine all those things.  We have to leave many things out of the story.  So if you’re writing to ask what happened to a character after the Moon Base Alpha series ended — or what a character likes for breakfast — or whether someone likes cats or dogs better — the answer is honestly: I don’t know.  Whatever you imagine the answer to be is good enough for me.

Category Four: Questions about what my characters look like

I get a lot of requests to specifically describe characters which is because I didn’t specifically describe many of them in my books.  That’s because, frankly, I don’t think extremely specific character descriptions are very helpful.  My own experience is that, no matter how specifically a character is described, I probably imagine them the way I want to anyhow.  So I’m pretty sure that you do the same.  Therefore, whatever you imagine a character to look like is what they look like.

Now, this doesn’t really work for graphic novels or movies.  You will very obviously see the characters in the graphic novels, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that is the only way they can look.  It’s just one version.  The chances are very slim that any character will look exactly as you imagined them in the graphic novel — or the movie.  There is nothing i or anyone else can do about this.  That’s just the way things are.  Try not to be disappointed.

And finally, this is probably the question I get asked more than any other, even though it is answered elsewhere on this site:

Category Five: Questions about how many books will be in each series

I can’t answer a question I don’t know the answer to.  And right now, I do not know how long each series will go.  Sorry.


863 thoughts on “Here’s Why I Can’t Answer Certain Questions You Have About My Books

  1. I made an online petition for the Spy School movie at Please sign it.

  2. I looked at the website. I don’t think they should make a movie because it might ruin some peoples impression of the book or it might not come out the way others imagine it would.

  3. Mr. Gibbs-

    How many people will need to see the Spy School movie for it to be worth the cost?

  4. Why did Erica say “clondike” (Sirius Hale) is a bad idea in Spy school book two Spy camp? It seemed a bit odd since Sirius was someone Erica trusted.

  5. Shuji –

    Erica’s grandfather was supposed to be retired. Hi coming out of retirement put him in danger. Erica was concerned for him.

  6. Ok, so I know you don’t take advice from your readers for your future books, but my theory is pretty epic!… I think Charlie Thorne and Jawa O’Shea should somehow be related. It might not make a lot of sense at first, but think about it! They both are very smart, and they both are of mixed races. I think that would make for a pretty cool crossover of the two series! Anyway, no one has to agree to it, but its justy theory. I love your books Mr.Gibbs!

  7. i mean no offense to mike but he kinda ruins all of bens missions for example SSS and mike takes all the girls.

  8. Stu- Personally, I’m not a fan of mike. I think he messes the missions up and takes all the girls. Plus Ben gets jealous and then, welp mission is screwed.

  9. Dear Stuart Gibbs,
    I am 10 years old and want to be a writer. Actually, I am already writing chapter books. Because I have a lot of good ideas. And I have learned a lot about good writing from reading your books. My biggest one that I learned from you is: Instead of always putting a hook at the beginning of a book, put one sentence in a new paragraph that is super exciting and wants to make the reader read the next chapter. But I was wondering if you had any suggestions for me instead of me just trying to find them in your books. (: Thanks, Paloma.

  10. Joshua Hallal –

    The whole idea for Mike, early in the series, was to show what would happen if Ben tried to keep a friend from the outside world and still be a spy. And the answer is… Mike messes things up for Ben. If you don’t like that about Mike, then this may not be the series for you.

  11. Hi! I love your books so much! You inspired me to write my own spy stories. I was wondering what made you decide to write the SS series or if you’ve just always been a writer.

  12. Dear Stu,

    When did you start writing and have you been interested in being an author since you were a kid?

  13. Hey- I am going to write a spy school fan fiction on this app and I was going to ask you if I could use your characters in my book? I just need your permission to use them before I can write it. So is that ok with you?

  14. Ben x Erica –

    I am not going to post the Jimmy Bond story. I think that the stuff I wrote as a kid is not the kind of studff that needs to be shared with the public.

  15. Boom –

    You don’t need my permission to use my characters in fan fiction — as long as you aren’t trying to make money off the story. You can’t make money off my characters. Only I can.

  16. Paloma –

    I prefer to keep my children’s lives private.

    Thanks for your kind thoughts about my wife.

  17. nate –

    I cannot make SS9 come out faster. In part because I have two other books coming out next year before that. I appreciate that you are excited for SS9, but there are plenty of other great books to read in the meantime.

  18. -Nate

    I recommend the Rick Riordan because it contains greek mythology and its a good series (P.S I like spy school more).

  19. Ben x Erica –

    Omggg I loveee ALL Rick Riordan’s books [don’t worry Stu I LOVE yours too]
    Yo got good taste in BOOKS

  20. Hi Mr. Gibbs! I’m a huge fan of your books, especially spy school. I think my favorite Spy School Revolution. I was about as stunned to learn that Erica has a sister as I was to learn that Rey from Star Wars(Equally as cool as Erica.) was a Palpitine. I hope that Trixie gets to be a great spy one day just like her sister. Who knows, maybe they’ll be a dynamic duo, and Ben can’t decide which one is better. Maybe, Ben and Trixie will end up together! I can’t WAIT to see what happens in the next book! If I don’t figure out what happens next I will EXPLODE.

  21. I literally am soo exited about the next book Mr. Gibbs i cant wait and i dont think you should ever stop writing spy school books cuse their soo good as u can probably guess by my grammer im only like 11 years old but i mean i cant wait tilll the nexy BOOK!!!!!

  22. Also Mr Gibbs im literlly going crazty on locdown and i need aanother SS book 2 reed or ill probably go mad!!

  23. Ben x Erica-
    I absolutely love Rick Riordan’s books, he and Stu are my favorite authors. You have good taste!

  24. Isaac –

    No. I cannot have SS9 come out sooner. I have two other books coming out this year before that one, so perhaps those will tide you over.

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