Sherry Garland is a fifth-generation Texan born to a tenant farming family in the Rio Grande Valley. She went to elementary school in the small town of Weatherford, Texas before the family moved to Arlington, where she went to high school. She graduated with honors from the University of Texas at Arlington and completed graduate school courses there. She began her literary career by entering and winning a writing contest in high school. After writing novels for adults, she switched to writing for children and teens in 1988. She says she often gets her material from personal experiences, real events, or historical subjects.
She has produced more than 30 books, three of which were bestsellers; one was adapted into an HBO television film. She has won many awards and honors, including the Western Writers of America Spur Award, Texas Institute of Letters Award, RWA Rita Award, and Parents Choice. She speaks to school groups across Texas and the USA, and has traveled to Asia several times to speak at international schools.