Timothy Truman was born in the small town of Gauley Bridge, West Virginia. He graduated from Gauley Bridge High School in 1974 and briefly attended the Columbus College of Art and Design at West Virginia University. In 1979 Truman enrolled at the Joe Kubert School of Cartoon and Graphic Art in New Jersey. He graduated with honors in 1981. From there Truman went to New York City where he immediately began working with SPI Fantasy Roleplaying Games. He continued to work in the fantasy games field for the next three years, most notably as a staff illustrator for TSR Hobbies.
Truman began working in the comics field during the independent boom of the mid-1980s. With John Ostrander, he co-created the long-running series Grimjack. His second major work Scout also proved highly popular due in no small part to Truman's excellent storytelling ability. Scout was lauded by Native American fans for the respectful way it portrayed Southwestern American Indian culture and beliefs.