R.L. Stine

Born: October 8, 1943

Ohio connection: Birth

Columbus

Entered into the Guinness World Records 2000: Millennium Edition as author of the world’s top-selling children’s stories, Robert Laurence Stine was born in Columbus, Ohio, on October 8, 1943. When he was nine years old, he began writing short stories, jokes, and comic books for his friends. He attended Ohio State University and was editor of The Sundial, the university’s humor magazine. After graduation, Stine moved to New York City. He was head writer on the Nickelodeon show Eureka’s Castle and was also editor-in-chief of Bananas, a humor magazine for children. In addition, he wrote many joke and humor books for children under the name Jovial Bob Stine.

book cover

In 1986, he published his first scary novel for teenagers, Blind Date, which was an immediate best seller. With The New Girl, Stine began “Fear Street,” a horror series for teens that had a number of spin-offs. The phenomenally successful “Goosebumps” series was launched in 1992. This scary but funny series for 8- to 12-year-olds was an instant hit; it has been translated into 16 languages in 31 countries and has expanded into television and has even been a theme-park attraction at MGM-Disney.

Stine’s series are instrumental in reaching boys and bringing them back to reading, and Stine is committed to promoting literacy for kids. He established a middle school writing program in his hometown of Columbus and continues to visit classrooms across the country.

Stine and his wife live in Manhattan.

Selected Awards: Children’s Choice Award, American Library Association, for several novels; Lifetime Achievement Award, Ohioana Library Association; Guinness World Records listing for best-selling children’s series in history, 2000, for the “Goosebumps” series; three-time winner of Nickelodeon Kid’s Choice Award; Horror Writers Association’s Lifetime Achievement Award (2014); Inkpot Award (2017).

Additional Resources

Official Website

Wikipedia Article with extensive bibliography