Richard Erdoes was born July 7, 1912, in Vienna, Austria. He studied art in Vienna, Berlin, and Paris. While working as a free-lance illustrator, he came to America as a refugee fleeing from the Nazis. In New York he met his future wife, Jean Sternbergh. She was an art director at Time, Inc., and she had contacted him to illustrate a book for her. For thirty years he made his living as a magazine illustrator and photographer. He had many travel assignments that took him and his family to the American West. In 1970 he accidentally got into serious writing when a writer with whom he was on assignment became ill, and he had to write the story for him. He found writing so rewarding that it became his focus. His books have been translated and published in eight foreign countries.