Ben Groundwater is an Australian travel writer, blogger, journalist, sub-editor and anything else someone will pay him to be. He began his writing career at age eight by penning a fake soccer magazine to impress his English teacher. It was a work that, 20 years later, he’s still yet to surpass.

In his last 10 years as a “proper” writer, Ben has penned travel, music and lifestyle features for the Sydney Morning Herald, the Sun-Herald, the Courier-Mail, FHM and Rolling Stone. He also once spent a week working for Dolly – it was the most frightening and informative five days of his career.

Ben has just published his first book, Five Ways To Carry A Goat, a travel memoir of his time touring the globe while staying with the readers of his weekly Fairfax blog, the Backpacker. During his four-month trip Ben hitch-hiked with a Brazilian sniper, tended to pigs in northern Thailand, got drunk at a wedding in the Czech Republic, and carried a goat in Ethiopia. For more information, check out the book page.

Ben has visited more than 60 countries, and has also worked as a sous chef in Colorado, a bartender in Edinburgh, a farmhand in Aberdeen, and an on-board cook for a tour company in Europe. He thinks he’ll stick to writing from now on.