At age 5 I appeared with my mother on my father’s television show.
About Me

     My very first ambition was to be an actress.  But that was only natural because both my parents were actors.  My father, Paul Tripp, (find out about him at: was also quite famous as a creator of children’s television shows and as a writer of children’s stories.  In fact, two of my earliest childhood memories are of sitting in a Broadway theatre to watch my mother play Maria in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night and seeing my father sitting at his desk writing.  As a child, I spent a lot of time dressing up and imitating my parents by acting out various parts.  But when I was about three and a half, I decided to try being like my father. Since I didn’t yet know how to put words on paper, I dictated my first book.  It was called The Adventures of King Saltagong—and it was NOT a bestseller.

     While growing up, I read just about everything I could get my hands on--fairy tales, mysteries, romances, and adventures—but my favorites were always stories about mythic heroes or biographies. I loved books that transported me to different worlds and introduced me to different times and places.  Even then, I loved history and knew that true stories could be as exciting as fiction.

    But, although—as I grew older-- I often wrote my own stories and poems, I still wanted to act.  Between the ages of four and nineteen I appeared on a number of television shows for children and adults.  I also studied acting at New York City’s famous High School of Performing Arts.  But when I went to college in Los Angeles at UCLA something happened.  Instead of taking acting classes, I became an English major and spent a lot of time studying history.  I also stopped wanting to act; and, for a time, I wasn’t sure of what I wanted to do. One semester, however, I took a class in children’s literature.  There, I re-read all my old childhood favorites.  I remembered how much those books had meant to me when I was growing up.  I thought about how the authors of those books had magically opened my eyes to new and wonderful worlds—and I knew I wanted to write for children, too.

    Of course, writing wasn’t quite as easy as it looked.  But even when publishers rejected my first efforts, I kept on trying. Still, before I saw my first book in print, I had become a wife, the mother of two young children, and an editor at UCLA’s Fowler Museum where I helped scholars write books about the arts of Africa, Asia, the Pacific, and the Americas.

     Today, my husband and I live in Los Angeles with a very large, very friendly golden retriever.  Our children are grown, and I spend most of my time doing the things I like best:  reading and writing books.