Autobiography of Author
Lee Daniel Quinn
(Author of many Maze books)
I was married in 1955 to my current Britbride, Margaret.
We have 3 children: Victoria Royle (Bonkey), Candlish, Conrad Michael
Quinn, and Mary Elizabeth (MB) Goldberg.
We Quinn's have 4 grandchildren: Michael (from Conrad), Zoe
(from Bonkey) and Alyssa & Brittany (from MB). Victoria
married an Englishman so the Queen's books are balanced as
she lives there today.
I was born in The Bronx, NY in 1929 and lived there in my teens.
Margaret, was born in Bess o' th' Barn, a suburb of Manchester
(England) and lived at home until enlisting in the Wrens -- the woman's
British naval arm.
I grew up in a very "mixed bag" of teenagers who had one thing
to link them -- they were all what today would be called "nerds."
We were all into High School chemistry and physics and all worked
and hung out at a bicycle rental and general fixit shop called
"Fuller's" where we were into all sorts of nerdy pranks. We had,
Irish, Italian, Jewish, German, Black, kids -- growing up with this
group provided me with a lifelong ability to get along with all
sorts of people.
Going to work out of High School, I worked for the New York
Central Railroad in the passenger department. The last place was
the ticket windows in Grand Central Terminal where I met Margaret,
sold her a ticket and lost my heart to her after a 3-year
There followed a series of transportation-related jobs, such
as United Airlines as reservation agent and ticket agent; various
retail travel agents (in New York, Detroit, and Indianapolis);
wholesale travel suppliers in New York; and for a travel club where
I was the direct mail manager.
Margaret and I opened a home-based typesetting business in New
Jersey and this occupied both of us for about 20 years. We set type
for Rutgers University publications and other local organizations.
Working with a computer programmer, I designed an early typesetting
program which we sold. I edited and published a local newspaper for
about five years. I also offered his services as a communications
consultant to small businesses in the area.
On weekends I sold my non-objective art at various malls in the
area, winning a prize at the big Greenwich Village (NYC) art show. Because I used to do pen and ink doodles, a local bookstore
owner asked me to produce and publish a book of mazes which were
popular at the time. This lead -- over 20 years -- to producing a
dozen complex maze books, most of which were published by Dover
Press and are still in print.
Over the years, with my love of words, I began to collect odd
definitions of ordinary words which I wove into a 142 page book
containing 5,000+ of these definitions. Because I didn't have the
citations for each item, I could not publish Quinn's Devious
Dictionary, so I give it away for a $25 donation.
I also acted as campaign coordinator for a local Democratic
organization, climaxing in his election as mayor for our community.
When the typesetting business slowed down, I was asked to join
the local municipal government as communications coordinator. I held
this position for 4 years, during which time I set up the municipal
cable television station.
After the mayor declined to run for a second term, I was asked
by the County government to come in and be a part of a team which set
up a 2.5 million dollar Fire Academy. After 10 years I retired because
there was so little to do.
We are in our 46th year of marriage and I credit this to the fact
that Margaret still laughs at my jokes. After I retired, I went crazy out of boredom for a while. That
is until I discovered conversing with other emailers. I established the two daily e-columns and that saved my mind.
In the meantime I had a slight stroke that left me with a shaking
hand, but not for typing -- just writing. Then I developed an intestinal condition that keeps me close
to home -- but not isolated. I am also the doyen of a words discussion group called ABOUT-WORDS.
All together, I'm quite addicted to the computer -- but