Joseph Sutton was born in Brooklyn and raised in Hollywood. He played football at the University of Oregon and graduated with a degree in philosophy. He earned a teaching credential and a degree in history at Cal State University Los Angeles and taught high school history and English for many years. Sutton, who has been writing for more than 50 years, has published a total of 17 books. His essays and short stories have appeared in numerous national magazines and journals. He lives in San Francisco with his wife Joan.