Wendy Cope was born in Erith, Kent. After university she worked for fifteen years as a primary-school teacher in London. Her first collection of poems, Making Cocoa for Kingsley Amis, was published in 1986. In 1987 she received a Cholmondeley Award for poetry and in 1995 the American Academy of Arts and Letters Michael Braude Award for light verse. She was awarded an OBE in 2010, and her most recent collection, Family Values, was published in 2011.