Author Daniel Pinkwater comments on the caprices and vagaries of life for National Public Radio's award-winning newsmagazine, All Things Considered.
Trained as an artist, Pinkwater began his writing career in 1969. With a ballpoint pen "stolen from a post office," he wrote and illustrated his first book, The Terrible Roar. The book's immediate success enabled the author to move from the sidewalks of New York to an apartment in fashionable Jersey City.
Since then, Pinkwater has written as many as 50 children's books, including Lizard Music, The Hoboken Chicken Emergency, Blue Moose, and The Snarkout Boys and the Avocado of Death. Pinkwater's books are designed to be understood by children aged six to 14, but are read by people of all ages.
Many of the stories in one of his recent books, Fish Whistle: Commentaries, Uncommentaries, and Vulgar Excesses, published by Addison-Wesley, were first heard on All Things Considered. In Fish Whistle, Pinkwater relates the circumstances under which he became involved with NPR.
In 1987, Pinkwater received a call from a "Louise," who asked if he would like to do commentaries for All Things Considered. He responded, "I've always thought that I ought to," and sent NPR a tape of some remarks he had made for the Children's Book Council.
A week later, Art Silverman, producer of All Things Considered, called Pinkwater to ask if he wanted to do commentaries for the program. The conversation went something like this — "I thought I already was." "Was what?" "Doing commentaries for All Things Considered." "How could you think that when I've never heard of you before [receiving the tape] this morning?" "But Louise called me last week and told me it was all set." "Who's Louise?" What exactly happened was never discovered, but Pinkwater is satisfied with the results.
He resides on a farm in upstate New York with his wife Jill, who is also a writer.