I was born in the twin cities of Bloomington-Normal Illinois, and grew up in a little town called Heyworth (about 13 miles south of there). I attended Illinois State University as both an undergraduate and graduate student, and lived in Normal until GDW, Inc. went out of business, when I moved to Austin Texas to work for SJ Games.
Where I worked
Over the years, I've held a number of jobs, beginning with the usual neighborhood chores (lawnmowing, and the like) and a newspaper route in high school. During college, I frequented the university games club, whose members would form Game Designers' Workshop, Inc. (better known as GDW).
Game Designer's Workshop was originally a partnership, and later incorporated to become Game Designers' Workshop Inc. I was one of the junior partners, and a stockholder, eventually serving on the board of directors and as corporate secretary.
While at GDW, I wrote, co-wrote, or edited over 30 game products, and served as designer, editor, developer, typesetter, business machine trouble-shooter, and was in charge of the office soda machine.
After GDW went out of business in 1995, I went on unemployment for a short time and worked a succession of part-time jobs (including several seasons as a part time clerk for the IRS answering their 1-800-IRS-FORM number). I was employed as a sales associate (business electronics) at a national office supply chain when Steve Jackson offered me the position of art director and Traveller line editor. I accepted immediately, and have been there ever since (although I am no longer art director).