Sheila Martin was born in 1946 and grew up in Brooklyn, New York. She graduated from New York University and worked as a painter and graphic designer in New York City and Ithaca, New York.
In 1992 she and her husband moved to Memphis, Tennessee, where she wrote and illustrated The Coney Island Book of the Dead, An Illustrated Novel, published in late 2016. It won the 2017 McLaughlin-Esstman-Stearns First Novel Prize and a 2018 Darrell Award. She’s also written a second novel, The Time Artist, which she’s currently revising, and has published short stories in six magazines.