Luis Sepœlveda was born in Ovalle in Northern Chile in 1949. He went to school in Santiago, and then studied to become a theatre director. He was politically involved, and joined the Chilean section of the Bolivian guerrilla. His first collection of short stories, Chronicle of Pedro Nobody was published in 1969 and received the Premio Casa de las Américas. Until 1973, the year of the coup, Sepœlveda was a member of the bodyguard of President Salvador Allende. The military junta of Pinochet condemned him to two and a half years in prison. Sepœlveda's works represent a variety of literary genres, including short stories, children's stories, crime stories and travelogues. Sepœlveda's texts have been translated into more than 50 languages. He is one of the most widely read Latin American writers. The author has lived in Spain since 1996.