Tolya L. Thompson graduated from George Washington High School in Colorado, received a Bachelor’s of Science in Pre-Med Biology from Southern University in Louisiana, then moved to New York and attended Weill Medical College of Cornell University’s Physician Assistant Program. After receiving board certifications in medicine and surgery she interned at Ms. Magazine. That is when the literary world opened up to her. Inspired and empowered by women such as the great Marcia Gillespie, Tolya wrote her first book in the Smarties Book series, Loud Lips Lucy. Following titles include, Worry Wart Wes, Ingrown Tyrone, Catchin’ Cooties Consuelo, Busy Body Bonita, Wheezing Winona Weatherby and Breathless Bethany Buttercup.
Now her inspiration comes from the thrills and chills of the emergency room. Much of her success is a direct result of the partnerships with numerous corporations and organizations over the years, including, but not limited to the Allergy & Asthma Network Mothers Association, American Lung Association California, the Harlem Children’s Zone, Roche Pharmaceuticals, Sanofi Aventis, and Schering Plough. Tolya has also worked extensively with departments of health and education all across the country to help increase literacy and decrease poor health.
Tolya currently shares a home in California with her husband Mike and son Chancellor.
About the Illustrator
Terence Gaylor is the illustrator of the new line of Smarties books featuring Piper Lee. Terence has worked in London and New York City for the past thirty years as a professional illustrator. Terence got his start working on storyboards and cartoon illustration in London. After moving to NYC Terence joined an advertising agency and mastered package illustration for kids.
His ambitions eventually moved him back to London where he developed expertise in 3D while creating the art and animation for online games specifically for gaming companies. Terence is skilled in Cheetah 3D, Cinema 4D, Maya, Photoshop, Flash and Illustrator. Terence’s creations continue to brighten the lives of children everywhere.