Nick Arnold (writer)

For other people named Nicholas Arnold, see Nicholas Arnold (disambiguation).

Nick Arnold (born 4 August 1964)[1] is a British writer of science books for children. He is best known for the long series Horrible Science, illustrated by Tony De Saulles, and the short series Wild Lives, illus. Jane Cope. His other works include some published under the name Robert Roland.[1]

Arnold was born in Cambridge, England.[2] His first published works appeared as a result of a project he was working on at the University of North London, when he was trying to teach young children. A positive review was written about him, and he started to write the Horrible Science books.

Nick is the middle child of 3 brothers. His older and younger brothers are both alive today. His mother is 24 years older than he is. Nick has an okay experience in school, describing it as "neither happy nor unhappy but somewhere in-between". He loved reading, writing and history but hated maths and didn't really engage in physical activity. In answer to the FAQ "did you like science at school", Nick's honest answer is " 'not especially - it was never horrible enough for me.' Apart from biology, of course!". Arnold left school with many history qualification but decided to become a writer. He found it hard to get published however. He became an editor in London hoping that "working as an editor might help him get his own books published". In London, he struggled to find work. He was so desperate that he took up a job editing science books. Nick began to write articles with a friend named Vip. Some of these ended up in the Guardian newspaper. Eventually he was out of work an decided to write books so wrote to every publisher in Britain requesting work. Scholastics pitched to him the concept of a series named "Horrible Science", and Arnold soon wrote Ugly Bugs. An illustrator for Scholastic named Tony De Saulles was hired as the illustrator for the series. This book was released alongside Blood, Bones and Body Bits, and the high sales solidified the series. In 1998, he broke his arm whilst performing a Horrible Science show. He finished the show and signed books before being rushed to the hospital. In 2004, Arnold became the first British author to tour China. He and Tony De Saulles filmed a TV show there and promoted the Chinese edition of the Horrible Science series. In 2006, Arnold founded the Appledore Book Festival after leading a campaign to save 6 libraries from closure. He is the Book Festival Director. In 2008, Arnold achieved worldwide publicity for his claim to have located the site of the Battle of Cynuit, fought between Saxons and Danes in 878.[3]

See also


  1. 1 2 Robert Roland at Library of Congress Authorities identifies Roland as a pseudonym of Arnold and gives his date of birth citing the British Library (BL). Retrieved 2015-04-14.
  2. "Nick's Horrible Life". Nick Arnold ( Retrieved 2015-04-14.
  3. "Nick Arnold". Retrieved 2014-08-18.

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