Rick Riordan didn't like to read books as a child. It wasn't until he read the Lord of the Rings trilogy in middle school and studied Norse mythology that he started to get into reading. (Source)
Rick Riordan's parents and grandparents were all teachers. (Source)
Rick Riordan thought he was going to be a rock star when he grew up – he worked his way through college playing in bands on the weekend. He says "that's where a lot of my creative energy was going in college." (Source)
Rick Riordan got through high school English without reading a single book. But later on in college, he read all of the books he missed out on and became an English teacher. (Source)
Rick Riordan showed the manuscript of The Lightning Thief to his middle school students before getting it published and got their feedback. Son of the Sea God was the original title of this book, but Riordan's middle school students told him to change it. They felt that original title was no good, because it gave away the secret of Percy's dad too quickly. (Source)
Rick Riordan says, "You have to be a reader if you want to write."
Over 1.2 million copies of The Lightning Thief have been sold. (Source)
The director of the film version of The Lightning Thief, Chris Columbus, directed the film versions of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. (Source)