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Michael (Joseph) (Rod Alexander Pellowski Charles Bracken Melanie Martin Liz Matthews Morgan Matthews Ski Michaels Michael Morgan Pellowski Bart Rockwell Richard Smithsen Anthony Ventura Dick Walker) (1949-) Biography - Personal, Addresses, Career, Member

mahwah troll illustrated york

Born 1949, in New Brunswick, NJ; Education: Rutgers University, B.A., 1971. Hobbies and other interests: Jogging, sports.

Agent—c/o Author Mail, Enslow Publishers, Box 398, 40 Industrial Rd., Dept. F61, Berkeley Heights, NJ 07922-0398.

Professional football player affiliated with the New England Patriots, 1971-73; Gibbons School, New Brunswick, NJ, teacher of philosophy and art, director of health and physical education, 1973-75; freelance writer, 1975—. Creator, writer, host, and producer of children's series Fun Stop, under stage name Ski Michaels, on cable television, 1982-85; stand-up comedian under stage name Ski Michaels, 1989-90.

Elks.

Ace Award nomination, Academy for Cable Excellence, 1982, for Fun Stop.

NONFICTION; FOR CHILDREN

The Great Sports Question and Answer Book, Waldman Publishing (New York, NY), 1979.

A Child's Book of the Bible, Playmore (New York, NY), 1980.

Jokes: Hours of Laughs, Playmore (New York, NY), 1980.

Great Baseball Quiz Book, Moby Books (New York, NY), 1982.

Great Football Quiz Book, Moby Books (New York, NY), 1982.

Amazing but True Sports Stories, Moby Books (New York, NY), 1982.

Fire Fighter ("What's It Like to Be a …" series), Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1989.

Forest Ranger ("What's It Like to Be a …" series), illustrated by George Ulrich, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1989.

Police Officer ("What's It Like to Be a …" series), illustrated by Mena Dolobowsky, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1990.

(Under pseudonym Dick Walker) Baseball: Play Like a Pro, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1990.

(Under pseudonym Dick Walker) Softball: A Step-by-Step Guide, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1990.

(Under pseudonym Richard Smithsen) Freshwater Fishing: A Step-by-Step Guide, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1990.

(Under pseudonym Charles Bracken) Tennis: Play Like a Pro, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1990.

(Under pseudonym Charles Bracken) Volleyball: A Step-by-Step Guide, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1990.

(Under pseudonym Anthony Ventura) Soccer: Play Like a Pro, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1990.

(Under pseudonym Rod Alexander) BMX Racing: A Step-by-Step Guide, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1990.

102 School Jokes, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1992.

102 Wild & Wacky Jokes, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1992.

102 Cat & Dog Jokes, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1992.

102 Wacky Monster Jokes, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1992.

Not-So-Great Moments in Sports, illustrated by Myron Miller, Sterling Publishing (New York, NY), 1994.

Wackiest Jokes in the World, illustrated by Sanford Hoffman, Sterling Publishing (New York, NY), 1994.

Joke & Riddle Bonanza, illustrated by Sanford Hoffman, Sterling Publishing (New York, NY), 1995.

The Funny Side of Sports, illustrated by Stanford Hoffmann, Sterling Publishing (New York, NY), 1996.

Quiz Master Football, illustrated by Tim Davis, Pages Publishing Group (St. Petersburg, FL), 1997.

Baseball's Funniest People, illustrated by Stanford Hoffmann, Sterling Publishing (New York, NY), 1997.

Football's Wackiest Moments, illustrated by Stanford Hoffmann, Sterling Publishing (New York, NY), 1998.

(With Anne Kostick and Charles Foxgrover) 3650 Jokes, Puns, and Riddles, edited by Michael Driscoll, Black Dog & Leventhal (New York, NY), 1998.

Totally Loony Jokes and Riddles, illustrated by Sanford Hoffman, Sterling Publishing (New York, NY), 1999.

Amphetamine Drug Dangers, Enslow Publishers (Berkeley Heights, NJ), 2000.

Monster Jokes, illustrated by Jeff Sinclair, Sterling Publishing (New York, NY), 2001.

The O. J. Simpson Murder Trial ("Headline Court Case" series), Enslow Publishers (Berkeley Heights, NJ), 2001.

Super Sports Star Latrell Sprewell, Enslow Publishers (Berkeley Heights, NJ), 2002.

The Terrorist Trial of the 1993 Bombing of the World Trade Center ("Headline Court Case" series), Enslow Publishers (Berkeley Heights, NJ), 2003.

The Chicago "Black Sox" Baseball Scandal ("Headline Court Case" series), Enslow Publishers (Berkeley Heights, NJ), 2003.

The Charles Manson Murder Trial ("Headline Court Case" series), Enslow Publishers (Berkeley Heights, NJ), 2004.

(With Dom Forker and Wayne Stewart) Baffling Baseball Trivia, Main Street (New York, NY), 2004.

Super Sports Star Mike Piazza, Enslow Publishers (Berkeley Heights, NJ), 2004.

FICTION; FOR CHILDREN

Clara Joins the Circus, illustrated by True Kelley, Parents Magazine Press (New York, NY), 1981.

Double Trouble, Willowisp Press (Worthington, OH), 1986.

Ghost Toasties, Willowisp Press (Worthington, OH), 1986.

Where's Teddy?, Willowisp Press (Worthington, OH), 1986.

Maxwell Finds a Friend, illustrated by Anne Kennedy, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Benny's Bad Day, illustrated by Doug Cushman, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Who Can't Follow an Ant?, illustrated by Susan Swan, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Magic Broom, illustrated by Kathi Garry-McCord, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

The Messy Monster, illustrated by Diane Paterson, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

The Duck Who Loved Puddles, illustrated by Diane Paterson, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Moosey Saves Money, illustrated by Paul Harvey, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Teddy on Time, illustrated by Len Epstein, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Copycat Dog, illustrated by Anne Kennedy, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

No Fleas, Please!, illustrated by John Jones, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Photon-Attack of the Tunnel-Dwellers, Putnam, 1987.

Birthday Bear and the Runaway Skateboard, illustrated by Don Robison, Willowisp Press (Worthington, OH), 1987.

Ghost Bumps, Willowisp Press (Worthington, OH), 1987.

The Puppy Who Wanted a Playmate, illustrated by Bill Robison, Willowisp Press (Worthington, OH), 1987.

Ghost in the Library, illustrated by Robert Durham, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1989.

Mixed-up Magic, illustrated by Doug Cushman, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1989.

Professor Possum's Great Adventure, illustrated by Julie Durrell, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1989.

(Under pseudonym Melanie Martin) Itsy-Bitsy Giant, illustrated by Doug Cushman, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1989.

(Under pseudonym Melanie Martin) Madison Moves to the Country, illustrated by G. Brian Karas, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1989.

(Under pseudonym Melanie Martin) Morris, the Millionaire Mouse, illustrated by G. Brian Karas, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1989.

Triple Trouble, illustrated by Mel Crawford, Willowisp Press (St. Petersburg, FL), 1995.

UNDER PSEUDONYM LIZ MATTHEWS

Teeny Witch and Christmas Magic, illustrated by Carolyn Loh, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1991.

Teeny Witch and the Great Halloween Ride, illustrated by Carolyn Loh, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1991.

Teeny Witch and the Perfect Valentine, illustrated by Carolyn Loh, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1991.

Teeny Witch and the Terrible Twins, illustrated by Carolyn Loh, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1991.

Teeny Witch and the Tricky Easter Bunny, illustrated by Carolyn Loh, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1991.

Teeny Witch Goes on Vacation, illustrated by Carolyn Loh, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1991.

Teeny Witch Goes to School, illustrated by Carolyn Loh, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1991.

Teeny Witch Goes to the Library, illustrated by Carolyn Loh, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1991.

UNDER PSEUDONYM MORGAN MATTHEWS

Brave Sir Laughalot, illustrated by Mary Alice Baer, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Fish for Supper, illustrated by Susan Miller, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Icky, Sticky Gloop, illustrated by Yvonne Victor, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Silly Sidney, illustrated by Richard Max Kolding, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Squeaky Shoes, illustrated by G. Brian Karas, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Tricky Alex, illustrated by Ben Mahan, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Which Way, Hugo? illustrated by Susan Miller, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Whoo's Too Tired? illustrated by Richard Max Kolding, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1989.

The Big Race, illustrated by S. D. Schindler, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1989.

Chuck, the Unlucky Duck, illustrated by Paul Harvey, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1989.

Houdini, the Vanishing Hare, illustrated by Dana Gustafson, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1989.

Farmer ("What's It Like to Be a …" series) illustrated by Anne Kennedy, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1990.

Postal Worker ("What's It Like to Be a …" series), illustrated by Anne Kennedy, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1990.

Railroad Worker ("What's It Like to Be a …" series), illustrated by Anne Kennedy, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1990.

102 Goofy Jokes, Watermill Press (Mahwah, NJ), 1992.

102 Out-of-this-World Jokes, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1992.

102 School Cafeteria Jokes, Watermill Press (Mahwah, NJ), 1992.

UNDER PSEUDONYM SKI MICHAELS

The Baseball Bat, illustrated by George Guzzi, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

The Big Surprise, illustrated by Diane Paterson, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Felix, the Funny Fox, illustrated by Ben Mahan, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Fun in the Sun, illustrated by Diane Paterson, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Mystery of the Missing Fuzzy, illustrated by Dick Smolinski, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Mystery of the Windy Meadow, illustrated by Allen Atkinson, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Something New to Do, illustrated by Jan Palmer, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

Wake Up, Sam! illustrated by Diane Paterson, Troll (Mahwah, NJ), 1986.

102 Animal Jokes, Watermill Press (Mahwah, NJ), 1992.

102 Creepy, Crawly Bug Jokes, Watermill Press (Mahwah, NJ), 1992.

102 Haunted House Jokes, Watermill Press (Mahwah, NJ), 1992.

UNDER PSEUDONYM BART ROCKWELL

World's Strangest Baseball Stories, Watermill Press (Mahwah, NJ), 1993.

World's Strangest Basketball Stories, Watermill Press (Mahwah, NJ), 1993.

World's Strangest Football Stories, Watermill Press (Mahwah, NJ), 1993.

World's Strangest Hockey Stories, Watermill Press (Mahwah, NJ), 1993.

"RIVERDALE HIGH" SERIES

The Trouble with Candy, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1991.

Bad News Boyfriend, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1991.

One Last Date with Archie, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1991.

It's First Love, Jughead Jones, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1991.

The Big Breakup, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1992.

Rich Girls Don't Have to Worry, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1992.

Class Clown, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1992.

My Father, the Enemy, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1992.

Is That Arabella?, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1992.

Good-bye Millions, Hyperion (New York, NY), 1992.

UNDER NAME MICHAEL MORGAN PELLOWSKI

The Art of Making Comic Books, illustrated by Howard Bender, Lerner (Minneapolis, MN), 1995.

The Funny Side of Sports, Sterling Publishing (New York, NY), 1996.

Hey Sports Fans!: Over 150 Silly Sports Jokes and Riddles, Scholastic (New York, NY), 1996.

Silly Superhero Jokes & Riddles, Bantam (New York, NY), 1996.

BOOK ADAPTATIONS

Howard the Duck: The Movie Storybook, Putnam (New York, NY), 1986.

Silverhawks: The Menace of Moon Star, Putnam (New York, NY), 1987.

Silverhawks: The Planet-Eater, Putnam (New York, NY), 1987.

Silverhawks: The Sun Bandits, Putnam (New York, NY), 1987.

Silverhawks: The Terror of the Time-Stopper, Putnam (New York, NY), 1987.

Also author of Silly Sidney and My Sister the Mess-up, Willowisp (Worthington, OH), and That's So Funny I Fell Off My Dinosaur Laughing. Author of comedy scripts for stand-up comedians.

As a children's writer, Michael Pellowski pens works that appeal to a diverse set of audiences. He has written numerous children's picture books, several joke books, a series of novels for teenagers, and a number of informational books. This variety, and Pellowski's devotion to "humor, children, and sports," is not surprising given his exciting career history. After graduating from Rutgers College, Pellowski spent the early 1970s working as a professional football player affiliated with the New England Patriots and then serving as an art, philosophy, and physical education teacher at a small private school. Later, he worked as a comedian and produced and hosted a children's television show.

Pellowski first began to work as a freelance writer in 1975; his first published book for children, The Great Sports Question and Answer Book, appeared in 1979. From there, Pellowski penned picture books for younger children, including Clara Joins the Circus and Felix, the Funny Fox. For Troll, he wrote several books in the "What It's Like to Be a …" series, including titles on forest rangers, fire fighters, and police officers, and under the pseudonym Morgan Matthews, books on farmers, postal workers, and railroad workers. By the early 1990s, Pellowski had published several books in the popular Hyperion "Riverdale High" series, including Bad News Boyfriend and The Trouble with Candy. In addition, Pellowski continues to write joke and riddle books like Joke & Riddle Bonanza, Wackiest Jokes in the World, and 102 Cat & Dog Jokes.

Turning his hand toward subjects more suited to an older readership, Pellowski has written several entries in the "Headline Court Case" series. These books cover a range of famous legal cases, from the Chicago "Black Sox" baseball scandal in 1919 to the more recent trials of former football player O. J. Simpson and the individuals behind the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center in New York. Many reviewers commended the way that Pellowski makes the often complex facts behind the cases clear for his readers. For example, in The Over four hundred entries were selected by Michael Pellowski for his compilation of knock-knocks, puns, and wacky slogans as well as other humorous jokes and riddles. (Cover art by Sanford Hoffman.) Terrorist Trial of the 1993 Bombing of the World Trade Center, Pellowski provides a list of "People with Key Roles" for easy reference when reading the book. In The Chicago "Black Sox" Baseball Scandal, Pellowski "does a fine job of explaining some possibly unclear legal and athletic terms in context," Andrew Medlar noted in School Library Journal. And also in School Library Journal, reviewer Vicki Reutter praised Pellowski's objective handling of the controversial O. J. Simpson trial, declaring the book "well done and worthy of shelf space."

Pellowski's experience in the entertainment business often informs his work for children. He occasionally performs as a stand-up comedian and writes scripts for other comedians. Cable television viewers may remember Fun Stop, a weekly children's show that Pellowski wrote, hosted, and produced under the stage name "Ski Michaels." Fun Stop was distinguished with an Ace Award nomination from the Academy for Cable Excellence in 1982. Pellowski once explained that he closed his television show "with the words, 'Don't grow up too fast, because it's great to be a kid.'" According to Pellowski, that sentence sums up his cause in life.

Biographical and Critical Sources

PERIODICALS

Booklist, March 15, 1982, p. 965.

Children's Book Watch, June, 1991, p. 6.

Library Journal, February 1, 1997, Morey Berger and Paul Kaplan, review of Baseball's Funniest People, p. 83.

School Library Journal, April, 1989, pp. 95-96; January, 1996, p. 122 December, 2001, Vicki Reutter, review of The O. J. Simpson Murder Trial, pp. 169-170; September, 2003, Andrew Medlar, review of The Chicago "Black Sox" Baseball Scandal, pp. 234-235; November, 2003, G. Alyssa Sadler, review of The Terrorist Trial of the 1993 Bombing of the World Trade Center, p. 165.*

Hugh (Shoo Rayner) Rayner Biography - Personal, Addresses, Career, Writings, Sidelights [next] [back] Chloë Rayban (1944–) Biography - Personal, Addresses, Career, Member, Honors Awards, Writings, Adaptations, Work in Progress, Sidelights

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