|James Marshall had planned to be a professional musician. He studied at the New England Conservatory of Music, but an injury to his hand forced him to switch career goals. He attended Trinity College, where he received a master's degree in French and history, after which he became, surprisingly, a Spanish teacher. Marshall's natural talent as an artist led an editor to hire him to illustrate Byrd Baylor's PLINK, PLINK, PLINK in 1971. The following year, Marshall established himself as both an author and illustrator with his picture book GEORGE AND MARTHA. His 1988, his illustrations for GOLDILOCKS earned that book a Caldecott Honor. In addition to his picture books, Marshall is well known for his series of easy readers featuring the exploits of Fox, a lazy yet debonair showoff. During his career, Marshall created many unforgettable characters, including Joe and Spud (THE CUT-UPS), Miss Nelson and Miss Viola Swamp (MISS NELSON IS MISSING!) and the entire Stupid family (THE STUPIDS HAVE A BALL).