Author Mary Morony is one of six children. She was born and raised in Charlottesville, Virginia, mainly by her family's maid. It was a time and place of segregated schools and water fountains, as well as restaurants and movie theaters that prohibited black customers. The mother of four children, she earned a bachelor of arts in English at the University of Virginia, with a concentration in creative writing, when she was in her forties. Morony was inspired to write Apron Strings by the relationship she was privileged to have with her family's maid, who taught her love and acceptance with warmth, humor, and unending patience. The author lives on a farm in Orange County, Virginia, with her husband, four dogs, and her daughter's cat.