Tom Mills has over twenty-five years background in art direction, graphic design, and marketing and branding. An award-winning cartoon animator and illustrator, Tom has taught college classes in graphic design and creative thinking, and has been teaching cartoon animation to children for more than fifteen years. He lives in Traverse City, Michigan with his wife.Tom Birdseye readily admits that he never aspired to be a writer. As a young man growing up in North Carolina and Kentucky, he was more interested in sports, crawdads, mud balls, forts built in the woods, secret codes, bicycles without fenders, butter pecan ice cream, and snow. Birdseye, however, became published at the age of thirty-five after ten years of teaching, a year of living in Japan, and two unrelated degrees. The author once commented, "Life, it seems, is full of who'd-a-thought-its.""At times it still amazes me that writing is my profession," Birdseye once said. "It was such a difficult process for me when I was a kid; I can really identify with the reluctant writer in school today." The author recalled how difficult it was for him to complete stories because of his poor grammatical skills. He acknowledges that if it were not for certain people offering him encouragement, he would not have prospered as a writer. Birdseye now carries a small notebook around just in case he comes across any new ideas or characters."True, I still labor through my stories," Birdseye once admitted, "wrestling with the spelling beast and the punctuation monster, writing and rewriting, then rewriting some more, until I glean my best, but the process has become one of pleasure instead of pain. I love doing it, and I love sharing it with others. The boy who couldn't imagine himself a writer, now can't imagine himself anything else." Tom lives in Oregon with his wife, Debbie.nbsp; He has two grown daughters.nbsp; When not writing or in classrooms talking with children and teachers about the writing process, I enjoy skiing, rock and mountain climbing, ski mountaineering, backpacking, mountain biking, kayaking, running, playing the string bass, and reading.