Margareta Strömstedt was born in Småland, where her father August Henriksson was a minister in the Free Church. She qualified as a teacher in Lund, but continued with university studies, and graduated in 1956. In the 1960s, she worked with children’s and teenage theatre and was a literary critic on the newspaper Dagens Nyheter. In 1969, she trained with Radio Sweden and was a producer until 1985. She has been married to editor-in-chief Bo Strömstedt since 1953.
A feature of her work is her strong interest in child welfare. She wrote several children’s books back in the 1960s, including Fjärilar i klassen och andra sagor om mina vänner blandt tomtarna, 1961, and Ketchup och bananer, 1969. However, her true breakthrough came later in the 1980s with her prize-winning series about a girl called Majken, the first book Majken, den nittonde december appearing in 1982. She published her debut work of adult fiction in 1980, the autobiographical novel Julstädningen och döden, which in a series of graphic scenes relates the story of a girl’s fight for and against her mother. In Församlingen under jorden, 1990, she continues her account of her childhood growing up in Småland, this time with fewer darkly humorous, but more tragic elements, and focusing on her brother. In 1977 she wrote a biography of Astrid Lindgren, which she used as a basis for compiling Astrids klokbok, published in 1997.
Additions by the editorial team 2011:
The above biography was first published in 1998. Since then, Margareta Strömstedt has published the book Natten innan de hängde Ruth Ellis och andra berättelser ur mitt liv, 2006.
Margareta Strömstedt is the recipient of a number of awards and honours, including De Nios Astrid Lindgren-pris 2002, Sveriges Radios Novellpris 2007 and in 2001 she was awarded an honorary doctorate at Växjö University.