Macondo and its residents were loosely based on Aracataca, the Colombian town where Gabriel García Márquez grew up. He claimed that a lot of the supernatural elements came from his grandmother's stories about the family and the way she would make no distinction between the supernatural and the real. (Source.)
Gabriel García Márquez is good friends with Fidel Castro, with whom he shares a love of literature and many political ideals (Source.)
This novel won the 1982 Nobel Prize for Literature and has been translated into 37 languages. WOW. (Source.)
The 1960s and 1970s saw an explosion in Latin American literature known as the "Boom." Besides García Márquez, other significant writers of the time include Julio Cortázar, Ernesto Sabato, Carlos Fuentes, Mario Vargas Llosa, Jorge Luis Borges, and Pablo Neruda. Not a bad couple of decades.
One Hundred Years of Solitude won immediate critical acclaim and international praise upon its publication. No sad posthumous success for this guy! (Source.)