Margaret Simons is an award-winning freelance journalist and the author of many books and numerous articles and essays. She is also a journalism academic and Honorary Principal Fellow at the Centre for Advancing Journalism, University of Melbourne.
Simons co-wrote the biography of former Prime Minister of Australia, Malcolm Fraser. Malcolm Fraser: The Political Memoirs won both the Book of the Year and the Douglas Stewart Prize for Non-Fiction at the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards in 2011.
She also wrote an unauthorised biography of mass media proprietor Kerry Stokes (chairman of the Seven Network). Kerry Stokes: Self-Made Man was published by Penguin in 2013 and was nominated for best non-fiction book at the 2014 Walkley Awards, and won the history prize in the WA Premier’s Literary Awards.
Simons is also a novelist and a gardening writer. Her book Six Square Metres was launched in October 2015, and a USA edition was published in early 2020. Her book Resurrection in a Bucket – The Rich and Fertile Story of Compost was published by Allen & Unwin in May 2004. For many years Simons wrote the popular Earthmother gardening column for The Australian, and today she writes a quarterly gardening column for The Saturday Paper.
As well as writing books Simons is a freelance investigative journalist. Her long-form journalism has been published in The Monthly, Inside Story,The Age and other publications.
Simons was a founding board member (2018-2021) of the Public Interest Journalism Initiative, which conducts research and advocacy on media issues, as well as its Chair of Research. She remains a member of the Expert Research Panel. She is also the Chair of Angeles Relief Inc a charity established to help the children she wrote about in her Philippines journalism.
Simons holds a Doctorate in Creative Arts from the University of Technology Sydney.