Jack Prelutsky was born in 1940 in Brooklyn, N.Y., and grew up in the Bronx. After working various jobs — folk singer, cab driver, furniture and piano mover, fruit picker and janitor — Prelutsky began writing poetry at age 24 and published his first book three years later. He has published more than 40 books of children’s poetry.
In 2006 the Poetry Foundation named Prelutsky the inaugural consultant in children’s poetry, which has a two-year tenure and carries a $25,000 prize. According to the Poetry Foundation, Prelutsky will give two major public readings and “engage in a variety of projects and events to help instill a love of poetry among the nation’s youngest readers.”
Prelutsky attended Hunter College and lives in Washington state with his wife, Carolynn.