Walter Mitty is an ordinary man living an ordinary life. But he has dreams - vivid, extraordinary day dreams - in which the life he leads is one of excitement and even adventure, in which he - a weary, put upon middle-aged man - is the hero of his own story. A man can dream, can't he?
James Thurber was born in 1894 at Columbus, Ohio, where, as he once said, so many awful things happened to him. After university (Ohio State) he worked at the American Embassy in Paris from 1918 to 1920, and then turned to journalism. From 1927 onwards he was on the staff of the New Yorker, and first published much of his work in it. He died in New York in 1961, and is today recognised as one of America's greatest twentieth-century humourists.