P.L. Travers was born in 1899 in Maryborough in Queensland, Australia and was one of three sisters. She was brought up in the deep country, simply, but traditionally. She began her writing career in Australia, publishing many poems, then came to England and wrote for newspapers in Ireland and England. She began Mary Poppins `out of the blue'. A friend saw the first few chapters and took it to a publisher who at once offered a contract for the whole book. The first Mary Poppins book was published in 1934 and was an immediate success. It was followed by another five books.