Area native writes book about game show host

GLENDALE, Calif. – He said writing books about game shows is something he is good at, but Vienna native Adam Nedeff has a few other talents.

Nedeff has an amazing skill based on his knowledge of daytime television and entertainment shows.

“Give me a date and I can give you the game show that aired on that date,” he said of his talent.

That’s not all he is recognized for; the 30-year-old West Virginian, who now lives in Glendale, Calif., is also a published author. His most recent endeavour is a book, “Quizmaster: The Life and Times and Fun and Games of Bill Cullen,” about one of his childhood heroes, Bill Cullen.

“He was one of my favorites and a story that deserves to be told,” Nedeff said of Cullen. “Successful actors are remembered forever but game show hosts continue to fade away.”

Cullen, a Pittsburgh native, is most famous for hosting “Place the Face,” the original “The Price Is Right,” the syndicated “The $25,000 Pyramid” and “Blockbusters.” He also served as a panelist on “I’ve Got a Secret” and “To Tell the Truth.”

Cullen starred on 40 game shows, Nedeff said.

Nedeff, a 2005 Marshall University graduate, said he admired the game show host as a child watching television everyday. He moved to California in 2007 to pursue his passion for entertainment.

“I was shy when I was a kid and watched game shows a lot,” he said. “The flashing lights and bright colors and music, I was drawn to it.”

He also had a fascination with Cullen because he was an older man who never stood up; even at a young age he noticed that aspect of the host.

“He had polio as an infant and never fully recovered from it,” Nedeff said of Cullen. “That’s another reason I felt his story needed to be told.”

Nedeff said he enjoys writing and has five other books that haven’t been published yet. He said the last one he wrote, the one about the game show host, is the first one to be published.

“It wasn’t the most daunting task,” he added. “I had a lot of help. I’d say I was writing a book about Cullen and they said they wanted to help.”

Those who “helped” him write the biography included people who knew the on-air game show host personally and Cullen’s wife, Ann, who lives in Orange County, Calif.

Nedeff hopes to continue to write about game shows and one day have his own.

“Writing about game shows is going to be my thing now,” he said. “There was always somebody saying I should do it.”

Along with his roommate, Nedeff re-enacts game shows of all types using homemade props and computer animations. They remake the sets for the shows in parks and perform at private parties and corporate functions, he said.

Nedeff has appeared as a contestant on three game shows and worked behind-the-scenes for Wheel of Fortune and The Price is Right.

In January 2011, Nedeff participated in the Conan O’Brien show when O’Brien stopped by the Madame Tussauds house of wax figures in Los Angeles. Nedeff was a tour guide for the museum and spoke with O’Brien for hours of footage on the figures, including one with the likeness of the comedian.

Nedeff said work is scarce in California so he took matters into his own hands.

“I have a desire to get into game shows so I decided to create my own work,” he said.

“Quizmaster: The Life and Times and Fun and Games of Bill Cullen” is available in paperback and PDF format at bearmanormedia.com and in paperback and Kindle format at amazon.com.