Veronica Geng was the daughter of an army officer and a descendant of settlers of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. She was raised in Philadelphia and attended the University of Pennsylvania. She wrote short stories and essays for publications such as the Village Voice and was an influential and acclaimed humorist. The Los Angeles Times called her "the quirky dark lady of Manhattan's literary scene, celebrated for her deadpan essays and revolving-door sex life." In the 1970s, she became the assistant fiction editor at The New Yorker Magazine and worked closely with writers such as Philip Roth, Frederick Barthelme, Milan Kundera, William Trevor, James McCourt, and Ian Frazier. She was credited with persuading the editor William Shawn to publish his successful short novel The Ghost Writer in 1979. Geng left The New Yorker in 1992. Her collections of articles were published as Partners (1984) and Love Trouble Is My Business (1988).