Robert Greene was born on May 14, 1959 in Los Angeles, California. He attended the University of California, Berkeley before transferring to the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he received a B.A. in classical studies. Before becoming an author, he worked a variety of jobs including construction worker, translator, magazine editor, and Hollywood movie writer. In 1995, he worked as a writer at Fabrica, an art and media school in Italy, and met a book packager named Joost Elffers. Greene pitched a book about power to Elffers and wrote a draft, which eventually became his first book, The 48 Laws of Power. His other works include The Art of Seduction, The 33 Strategies of War, The 50th Law, and Mastery.
Joost Elffers is the producer of Viking Studio's bestselling The Secret Language of Birthdays, The Secret Language of Relationships, and Play with Your Food. He lives in New York City.