Born in Tacomo, Washington, he started his career at the age of 19 when he worked for a small newspaper. When the Second World War came, he got a job as a photographer until he was discharged. He married during the war, had one child then divorced after the war.He enrolled at the University of Washington after the war and met his next wife at a creative writing class. They married and had two children, Brian and Bruce. Brian was to take forth the adventures of Dune after his father died. Bruce became a gay-rights activitst.
Frank began writing Dune in 1959 and took six years to complete. His wife provided the money to support him whilst he wrote the books. He had originally planned it to be a short story but it grew out of proportion so he continued. It took another couple of years before anyonewould publish the story in full. It was published in Analog magazine as two stories. When he eventually did find somewhere to publish it, it was didn`t become the success that we know it to be. It sold modestly and opened a number of new opportunities for him, ones that would not otherwisehave been opened for him. He continued writing stories including sequels to Dune, Dune Messiah and Children of Dune.
His wife passed just as Dune was becoming main stream with the release of David Lynch`s Dune film. It didn`t achieve the same effect that Star Wars had had. Frank tried to sue George Lucas because of some similarities between the two storyline, for examples both had desert planetsfeature prominently ( Arrakis / Tatooine ), both had main characters with names of Jesus` disciples ( Paul / Luke ) and both had a religious undertone to them.
He remarried after his wife`s death but that was only to last a year as he died from Pancreatic Cancer.