Emma Lillian Brock was born on June 11, 1886 in Fort Shaw, Montana. She graduated from the University of Minnesota with a bachelor's degree in 1908. Because of her interest in art, she also studied at the Minneapolis School of Art from 1910-1914 and the Art Students League in New York from 1917-1928. While studying art, she also worked as a librarian in the art department and children's rooms.
In 1929, Ms. Brock wrote and illustrated her first book Runaway Sardine. During her lifetime she wrote 36 books, almost all of which were published by Knopf. She liked to travel overseas, particulary to England and France, where many of her stories took place. Her book Here Comes Kristie (1942) was made into an NBC television special. Ms. Brock died on August 17, 1974.