Alan Gratz
was born and raised in Knoxville, TN, home of the 1982 World's Fair. After a carefree but humid childhood, Alan attended the University of Tennessee, where he earned a College Scholars degree with a specialization in creative writing, and later, a Master's degree in English education.

In addition to writing plays, magazine articles, and a few episodes of A&E's City Confidential, Alan has taught catapult-building to middle-schoolers, written more than 6,000 radio commercials, sold other people's books, lectured at a Czech university, and traveled the galaxy as a space ranger. (One of those is not true.)

Samurai Shortstop (Dial 2006) is his first book. He is also the author of the forthcoming Something Rotten (Dial 2007), a contemporary young adult murder mystery based on "Hamlet," as well as a middle grade novel tentatively-titled The Brooklyn Nine (Dial 2008).

Alan now lives with his wife Wendi and his daughter Jo in the high country of Western North Carolina, where he enjoys reading, eating pizza, and, perhaps not too surprisingly, watching baseball.

You can visit Alan's increasingly pointless blog by clicking here.

Or read a Q&A with Alan here.