Roger Jones was born in 1939 to Welsh parents. Brought up in Yorkshire on the edge of Ilkley Moor, he was educated at Uppingham School and Jesus College, Oxford. He spent ten years as teacher of English to foreign learners in London, Athens and Oxford and twelve years as smallholder in Wales, breeding sheep and goats, before working for fifteen years as English translator for the Bureau Interprofessionnel des Vins de Bourgogne (the body which represents the Burgundy wine industry). In between times he has worked as a jazz musician, furniture restorer and fencing contractor. He is now retired and devoted full-time to writing.