He was born in Levittown, New York. His father, Ed Emshwiller, was a noted visual artist, and his mother Carol Emshwiller, an award-winning author. Emshwiller graduated from MacArthur High School in 1977, attended Sarah Lawrence College (class of 1982), and married Margaret Mayo McGlynn in 1991. His work has appeared under his own name as well as P.R. Emshwiller, Stoney Emshwiller, Peter McGlynn, Stoney McGuinn, McGuinn Stoney, and Peter Roberts.
Peter Emshwiller was managing editor of both The Twilight Zone Magazine and Night Cry from 1985 to 1989.
In 1991 his Nebula Award-Nominated science fiction novel, The Host, was published by Bantam Books. In 1992, its sequel, Short Blade, was released (also by Bantam). A paperback copy of this novel was briefly featured in the Quentin Tarantino film "Jackie Brown" as the top book in the Billingsley shopping bag during the dressing room money exchange scene at the Del Amo Mall. Both works have repeatedly been optioned as feature films since they were published (notably by Jerry Bruckheimer from 2004 through 2007) but never made into movies.
Emshwiller’s humorous poetry appears regularly in Asinine Poetry, and he has had non-fiction articles published in many magazines including The Writer, The New York Observer, Locus, and The Long Island Tribune. In 2008 he co-wrote the screenplay for As Advertised, a sitcom pilot.
Emshwiller is represented by Chris Lotts at the Vicinanza Literary Agency for novels and, for screenwriting, Vince Gerardis of Created By. His sitcom writing team is represented by Steve Smith of Stagecoach Entertainment and Katie Cates at ICM.
Performing under the name Stoney Emshwiller, Emshwiller has been acting since he was a child. He has appeared in numerous stage productions in both New York (off Broadway) and Los Angeles, as well as in films and on TV. From 1988 to 1991 he sang with the 12-person choral ensemble The Euterpeans, including performing a concert at Carnegie Recital Hall.
In 2004 he signed with the William Morris Agency as a voiceover actor. He has since moved to AT&A for his voiceover representation and The Pinnacle Agency for commercials. Much of his current voice work is for radio advertisements, cartoons, and video games.
In 2005 Emshwiller helped found DANGERdanger, a comedy improv troupe which performs at such venues as iO West, The Westside Eclectic, and Second City Los Angeles.
In 1985, Emshwiller's oil paintings were exhibited in a show at 380 Gallery in Greenwich Village, NYC. Since then his art has been sold to private collectors and his painting, illustrations, and cartoons have been published in various magazines, including Gallery Magazine, Mongrel Literary Journal, and Twilight Zone Magazine.
His artwork has also appeared in movies such as Star Kid, The Empty Mirror, Hellraiser: Bloodline, Indictment: The McMartin Trial, as well as episodes of Maybe It's Me, George Lopez, Arli$$, and many other film and TV projects.
He also worked for many years (1992–2004) as a set dresser, lead man, set decorator, and art director for movies and television.
Emshwiller began his film project as a young man, but he said he “avoided completing his piece de resistance for almost 40 years because he felt his life wasn't interesting enough for the boy that he once was.” A health scare prompted him to return to the project. He created a sizzle reel to enter a crowdfunding contest run by Ovation TV and RocketHub. The project achieved its crowdsourcing goal within three weeks. The sizzle reel, posted on YouTube, received over one million hits within four weeks, and Emshwiller was interviewed in a variety of media, including Today, Time, Slate, Bustle, Vox, File770, the Washington Post, and WUZZ. Slate noted, “The power of the project comes through even in the short clip . . . with the 56-year-old man reflecting on his career, relationships, and regrets with an ambitious, constantly reacting past self.”
Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey George Tilton, Guard
Emotional Homicide Paul Roger Hodgkins
Winx Club Knut the Ogre, King Erendor
Life on a Stick 50's TV Guy
As Advertised Murray
Scarface: The World Is Yours Lieutenant Nacho
Random Luck Claude
Stacked with Daniel Negreanu New Jersey Groom & German Eurodude
Ace Combat Zero: The Belkan War (assorted voices)
The Lord of the Rings: The Battle for Middle-Earth II Axe-Thrower Dwarf/Demolisher Dwarf/Elvin King Thanduil
Harvey’s Think Harvey
Silent Hill: Homecoming Mike Stewart, Additional Voices
Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion Odysseus, Additional Voices
The Lord of the Rings: The Battle for Middle-earth II: The Rise of the Witch-king King Thranduil / Dwarven Warriors
EverQuest II: Kingdom of Sky Custodian Zaddar Sullissia/Deputy Stoutgut/Fluwkowir Haggleton
In the Land of Milk and Money Tyler Wagner
Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex (assorted voices)
Cowboy Bebop (assorted voices)
The Pickler Report Secretary Weimaier
Ratheon Ethics Sam
Southshore Inn Raxton, Mayor Brindle, additional voices
The n00bs Warrior Bob, Borwack, Innkeeper, additional voices
Sunstone The Shape
Sur Faces Frankie
Family Focus Pete
Film with Three Dancers (voice)
Image, Flesh and Voice Son
Jr. Trek Jim
Relativity Running Child
Hallelujah the Hills Boy Child