Tedd Arnold

Tedd Arnold

Born in Elmira, New York, Tedd grew up in a family of six with three brothers. His family lived on a farm in Pennsylvania for several years then returned to Elmira until Tedd was ten years old. His father's work then required that they move to Gainesville, Florida. There, Tedd's first art lessons in an abandoned dentist's office over the Happy Hour pool hall eventually led to a fine arts degree from the University of Florida. He and his wife, Carol, started their family in Tallahassee where Tedd worked as a commercial illustrator. Their first son, Walter, inspired his breakthrough picture book, No Jumping on the Bed! His second son, William, stars in No More Water in the Tub!, a sequel to his first book. He has now published more than 100 books as author and illustrator. When not working on his books, Tedd's interests include sketching, reading, travel and building things--like a garden shed and a tree house. He says, "The inspiration to begin writing and illustrating for children came from my wife, Carol. As a kindergarten teacher, she collected picture books. I was attracted to their colorful pages and the way the words and pictures played with each other, much like the captioned cartoons I had drawn when I was young. I love hearing from my readers! Kids keep me on my toes and they ask a lot of questions. The number one question seems to be, 'Where do you get your ideas?' It's also the hardest question to answer because every idea is different. Some ideas seem to pop out of thin air--while I'm driving down the road or taking a walk. Others come from reading or research. But most of my early ideas came from our boys and the things they would do and say. For instance, one time when our first son, Walter, was five years old, I found him lying on the couch, looking pale as a ghost and clutching a Bible to his chest. He was praying! When I asked what was wrong, he wouldn't answer. In fact, he wouldn't even open his mouth. My wife, Carol, finally coaxed a response from him: he pointed inside his mouth. Carol exclaimed, 'You have a loose tooth!' Walter's eyes nearly popped out with fright. We quickly assured him that it was perfectly okay for his tooth to come loose and that a new one would replace it. But Carol and I looked at each other and realized that despite all our efforts to be good parents, we had somehow completely forgotten to warn Walter that teeth fall out! He had thought he was falling apart! I made a little note in my journal; then ten years later, I expanded that memory into my book Parts." Tedd's current Fly Guy series has twice received the Theodor Seuss Geisel Award Honor and is approaching 20 books. He is also co-author and illustrator of a new series featuring the Noodleheads, Mac and Mac, also the recipient of a Theodor Seuss Geisel Award Honor. Tedd Arnold now lives beside a lake near Gainesville, Florida, with his wife, Carol, and their two cats, Lou and Kitty-doo.

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