About the Authors

Trisha Greenbush - A special friend whose stories are very child-friendly. Born in Florence, OR in 1964 she was raised in a Christian household, and grew up doing volunteer work for her local church, which included child care and even sang in the choir. At home her hobbies include skating, skiing, swimming, country music, ballet dancing and singing. She remembers taking a story, which was written as an assignment for school in 1978, to her church and reading it to the children in day care and seeing how their faces lit up with interest as she read to them and they saw her drawings. It pleased her, so she wanted to contribute more ideas and time into writing stories for children. She even likes to dream up creatures that do not exist for her stories. As you will note, several of our writers and illustrators have followed her example on this. Her work mostly revolves around Bandit and her Friends. Bandit is a character she created in light of herself, who has a makeshift "gang" of friends who live with her in the same house. "Bandit" was a nickname Greenbush acquired as a young child who used to love to steal games and toys from her siblings while they slept, and keep them in her room. She became known to her siblings as "the bandit", and she uses that name for the main character in her stories. She has a younger brother named Reginald and an older sister named Cheryl. Both also have made appearances in her stories, but only Reginald became successful for being the masochist.

Katrina O'hara - O'Hara's stories have added a little flare to our growing line-up. She took story-writing very seriously, and even created a few very short clips, or comic strips. O'Hara was raised on a farm in Chehalis, WA and has always been fascinated with baby animals, and wrote a great number of stories involving babies. Born in 1971, she was the youngest of 2 sisters. Her hobbies included backstreet innertubing in snow, horseback riding, hiking, but she mostly enjoyed bicycling. Her interest in writing began in 6th grade. She began with an idea based on a cartoon movie that came out at that time. In this story, she combines Greenbush's characters meeting a set of characters of her own. Among her most used characters is Jasper, a monkey she named after her pet mixed chihuahua. Jasper acted more like a monkey than a dog, so she gave him a new look and a mind of his own, and even a voice, and created this character. She wrote this first story late in 1982 and continued writing until 1986. O'Hara suffered from a congenital kidney disorder and died of renal failure in September of 1986.

DeeDee Rivera - The original creator of Martin, a "crazy-like-a-fox" lemur who classes himself as something of a lady's man. Born in 1974 in Toutle, WA, Rivera was always something of a recluse, even with her own family. Though she's always understood the value of a good friend at the same time. She enjoys hiking, animals, drawing, writing, traveling, music, good movies, cooking, and has a special fondness for the rock group INXS. Having a father in the military was not easy on her as a child and she did not learn much about being very social because of her family's constantly moving around. She did however, manage to keep a few very good friends, among them was Britton. She claimed her greatest life achievement was a very chance meeting up with INXS's guitarist Tim Farriss in a dark alley on a cold, lonely night while walking to a concert in Seattle. This has always been her most favorite band member of INXS. She was comforted by how friendly he really was. Rivera bases stories on real-life experiences as well as dreams she has. She loves animals and so most of the stories she writes are about animals in one way or another. She began writing stories in 1988, alongside Britton. Though Rivera tends to geer her ideas more toward a much older audience than Britton or any other one of our writers. Many of the writers in our group have used Rivera's illustrating skills to adorn their own work. She is very skilled at drawing animals, and lemurs and monkeys are her specialty.

Cathy Britton - This person was unique among us friends because she only wrote stories about people she knew. She worked together with Dee Dee Rivera quite a bit in collaborating stories. Britton believed good fiction is based on fact, so a majority of her stories are based on events that happened in her own life, or in the lives of people she knew. Her stories add realism and teaches children about real life problems and solutions. Born in 1973 in Coeur D' Alene, ID, she was accustomed to smaller town values. She left the town when it started becoming too big, and sought another small town, Hoquiam, WA. Britton is the kind of person who prefers her quiet office to the hub-bub of the outside World. However, even with that attitude, she enjoys fishing, swimming, traveling, cricket games and has even done volunteer work in crisis centers, the missions, and police department. When computers became big, Britton did not want to learn, but later realized that unless she did, she would not succeed. So, she taught herself how to use a computer, and did rather well. She still however, prefers her quiet office and rarely uses the internet. Britton wrote her first story in 1988, and in fact was the first to introduce Genny Genet to our line-up. Genny was based on a friend she had in school who always thought of her looks over all else. Originally, Britton was going to keep her as a teenage girl, but Dee Dee Rivera got the idea that Genny and her character Martin meet up and become steady.

Cairo Smith - Has only written 2 stories for UMG Productions, but his biggest and most amazing contribution has been the story "Gracie's Odessey". His stories leave a lasting impression on his readers. Born in Churchill, in New Zealand in 1975 to a sheep farmer, he had an appreciation for animals and nature that we have found unsurpassed. It's partly reflected in his story about a doe, named Gracie, who lives and gives birth in a zoo. Smith also did part of the work in the story "INXS Goes to Mount St. Helens" along with Rivera. But that story was put on hold for a while. He also created another story using his character, Davy (from Gracie's Odessey) going to visit the mountain himself. Smith is an active man, and so he does not have time to write many stories. He enjoys traveling, soccer, cricket, fishing, mountain climbing, bungee jumping and filming. He also enjoys spending weekends with his wife and 2 sons. Rivera met him in 1997 on one of his many trips to the USA. He was quite inspired by her love for INXS, and has ended up becoming a casual fan of the band himself. In fact, it was Rivera's love for INXS's frontman, Michael Hutchence, that also inspired his one major contribution to UMG Productions. Rivera was so grateful, she even named one of her characters in a story after him.