Jeff Kinney began cartooning while he was attending the University of Maryland in the early 1990s. Loosely based on his own childhood, *Diary of a Wimpy Kid* was first published in daily installments at Funbrain.com in 2004, while Kinney was working in Boston-based Pearson Education's Internet publishing division. Following the print publication of the first book in the series in 2007, *Diary of a Wimpy Kid* became an international sensation, with more than 16 million copies sold worldwide. To date, four *Wimpy Kid* books have been released, each becoming #1 New York Times bestsellers upon publication. A major motion picture based on the books was released in March 2010, and the much-anticipated fifth book in the series will be released in November. Kinney continues to serve as a design director for Pearson, where he created Poptropica.com, a virtual world where kids can explore and play safely online, and which enjoys millions of visits by kids from around the world every month. In 2009, Kinney was named one of Time Magazine's 100 "Most Influential People" in the world. He lives in Providence, RI.