Mike Klaassen

Children's Books, Teens, History, Education & Reference

Author Profile

Mike  Klaassen

Award-winning author Mike Klaassen began writing fiction when his sons were teenagers. His first two books were young-adult action-adventure novels influenced by his experience as a Kansas farm boy and as a Scoutmaster. A visit to the site of the Battle for New Orleans led Mike to write Backlash: A War of 1812 Novel, featuring five young Americans in the fight of their life. Ongoing research encouraged Mike to write books about the craft of writing fiction. The use of folktales as examples in his nonfiction books inspired him to begin Klaassen's Classic Folktales, a collection of ancient stories retold as novellas.


Fiction-Writing Modes

Education & Reference

Eleven fiction-writing modes comprise all written fiction. If you don't know what they are and how each works, how can your story reach its potential? Discover Fiction-Writing Modes by Mike Klaassen today!

Book Bubbles from Fiction-Writing Modes

Are You Thinking About Writing a Novel?

Eleven fiction-writing modes comprise all written fiction. If you don't know what they are and how each works, how can your story reach its potential? Writing fiction isn't easy, but trying to write a novel without a solid understanding of fiction-writing modes is an exercise in frustration. Why spend countless hours doing your own research? Fiction-Writing Modes: Eleven Essential Tools for Bringing Your Story to Life is a treasure of straightforward, practical information that you can use immediately. Unlock your full potential with Fiction-Writing Modes today!

The Brute


A tornado rips through their campsite on the prairie. Can he summon help, or will his violent temper betray him? Sixteen-year-old Fortney Curtis is on a campout in the vast Flint Hills of Kansas. A tornado destroys their campsite, disables the adults, and leaves Fort in charge of six younger boys. Distance, storm damage, wildlife, and flooding all obstruct his efforts, but Fort's greatest challenge lies within himself. Can he save the day—or will he let everyone down? The Brute is a young-adult, action-adventure novel for readers of all ages. If you like page-turning fiction with intriguing characters facing daunting challenges, then you'll love this gripping story. Discover the adventure of a life-time with The Brute today!

Book Bubbles from The Brute

A Conflict-Rich Environment

One of my goals in writing "The Brute" was to grab and hold the attention of a group notorious for being reluctant readers--adolescent males. To do that, I tried to create conflict, action, and suspense on every page.

In a Tent During a Tornado

Imagine that you're in a tent when a tornado strikes.



In 1812, with questionable justification and inadequate preparation, the newly united States of America declare war on Great Britain, the most powerful nation on earth. In Backlash, five young Americans wage a war that drastically changes their life—and the history of the world.

Book Bubbles from Backlash

British/Canadian Perpsective

To present the British and Canadian perspective of the war, I used a young Canadian-born lieutenant in the British army as a viewpoint character.

Hero or Coward?

I suspect that all of us who have never faced mortal danger, such as in a combat situation, wonder how we would react. With honor and courage? Or not? This is just one of the challenges Silas Shackleton faces in "Backlash."

Federalist Perspective

In 1812, the Federalists were the political party in opposition to President Madison and the Democratic-Republicans. To tell the Federalist side of the story, I chose a female character.

Hadjo's Perspective

As a counterpart to Lemuel's perspective as a frontiersman, I decided to create a character and story line from the perspective a native American.

The British Perspective

One of my goals in writing Backlash was to show the War of 1812 from the view of a wide variety of participants. For the British perspective, I created a young Canadian-born officer in the British army, Lieutenant George Sherbourne.

Battle of Tippecanoe

Technically, the Battle of Tippecanoe was not part of the War of 1812, but I thought it was a perfect opportunity to begin the story of Lemuel Wyckliffe.



He was looking for an opportunity to run away from his foster parents. Instead, he begins a journey that will either land him in jail or get him killed. Fifteen-year-old Bodie McCann is on a youth-rehabilitation spelunking trip in the Ozarks of Arkansas. When an earthquake crushes the adults, he finds himself stranded in the wilderness with four other juvenile delinquents. Tensions escalate as they struggle to feed themselves and escape the dangers of the wild. After the boys discover a marijuana farm, Bodie makes a decision that traps him deep in a pitch-black cave all by himself. Cracks is another of Mike Klaassen's growing portfolio of youth-oriented adventure stories. Imagine blending Hatchet and Lord of the Flies with a touch of Deliverance and you'll have a feel for this one. Buy Cracks to experience the thrill and adventure of this YA novel today!

Book Bubbles from Cracks

Wild Bees

I grew up on a farm near Whitewater, Kansas and was active in the local 4-H club. I also had an uncle who was a professional beekeeper, so I had a great opportunity for a beekeeping project. I love it when I can use experiences from my youth to suggest scenes in fiction. Of course, any real-life tale worth telling is fair game for embellishment in a novel.


I had an opportunity to write a literal cliff-hanger in this one, and I couldn't resist.

In a Cave When It Floods

As I write, I try to make things worse for my main character. Imagine that you are in a cave when an earthquake strikes . . . and then the cave begins to flood.

What would you do?

Imagine being deep inside a cave during an earthquake.


Children's Books

Cinderella is a witch! The story behind the fairy tale. An orphaned domestic slave discovers the magic within herself. Cinderella is part of the Klaassen's Classic Tales collection of ancient stories first published in the early 1800s, now enhanced for the 21st century. If you liked Hansel and Gretel and The Frog Prince, you'll love this novella. Rediscover the enchantment of Cinderella today!

Book Bubbles from Cinderella

Could She Really Be a Witch?

What would you do if you realized that your mother had been a witch . . . and you probably are, too?

First Suspicion

Ella accidently uses her mental power on her stepmother, who is the first to suspect Ella of being a witch. (It doesn't show in the bubble, but in the book Ella's perception of the thoughts of others is shown in italics.)

Ella Enslaved

Retelling this story provided an opportunity to show how Cinderella fell into the clutches of her stepmother. This is an excerpt from chapter 1.

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