Joyce Gibson Roach was born December 18, 1935 in Cleburne, Texas. She received a BFA in 1958 and an MA in 1964 from Texas Christian University.
Roach has always lived in ranch country, and has had a lifelong interest in Western Folklore. She is active in the Texas Folklore Society (and was its president in 1976). She has contributed articles to magazines such as Western Folklore, Horseman, and Southwest Heritage. She received the Spur Award from Western Writers of America in 1977 for The Cowgirls.