Louis Sacher was born in New York City and lived there until he was nine; his father even worked in the Empire State Building. His family then moved to California, where Sacher lived until he went to Antioch College in Ohio. His attendance there was cut short when his father died, and Sacher moved back to California to attend the University of California, Berkeley, where he majored in economics. While Sacher kept moving and studying (eventually getting a law degree from Hastings College in San Francisco), it was while he was at Berkeley that his life took a fateful turn. Sacher took a flyer from a little girl who was looking for college students to earn credit by working as teacher aides at her school, Hillside Elementary.
Sacher started working there and liked it a lot, becoming “Louis the Yard Teacher.” He eventually tried his hand at a children’s book based on Hillside: Sideways Stories From Wayside School. This book was published during Sacher’s first week at law school, but he kept writing while he studied, and then while he worked as a lawyer, until his books were selling well enough to support his family.
Sacher and his wife live in Austin, Texas (where the Texas heat gave him the first inspiration for Holes). They have one daughter, Sherre, and a dog named Watson.