Martin Waddell was born April 10, 1941, in Belfast, Ireland. He always wanted to be a professional soccer player. After having played for junior teams in Ireland, he left school at fifteen and held a variety of jobs, including working at a publishing company and as a night switchboard operator for a taxi company. Waddell is now one of the most prolific and successful contemporary children's writers, with more than one hundred books to his credit, some of them under his pseudonym Catherine Sefton. He won the 1986 Other Award, for his book Starry Night, which was also a runner up for The Guardian Children┐s Fiction Award and was shortlisted for the Young Observer Teenage Fiction Prize. He has twice won the Smarties Book Prize, for Farmer Duck and Can't You Sleep Little Bear? He also won the 1989 Kurt Mascher Award for The Park In The Dark, the 1990 Bets Book For Babies for Rosie┐s Babies and has been shortlisted for the 1992 Smarties Book Prize for Along The Lonely Road.