Ross Macdonald was the pseudonym of Kenneth Millar who was born in California and educated in Canada and at the University of Michigan, where he also taught. In 1938 he married the writer Margaret Millar. He served in the United States Naval Reserve from 1944 to 1946. He published his first novel, The Dark Tunnel, in 1944 and his first Lew Archer story, The Moving Target, in 1949. He became a Grand Master of the Mystery Writers of America in 1973.