Born: Established: 18 Sep 1941 Brisbane ;
Robert Macklin began work as a jackeroo and shedhand for a shearing team before doing a cadetship as a journalist and working for the Queensland Courier Mail and later The Age. He was Press Secretary to Sir John McEwen from 1967 to 1971, during which time McEwen served a brief term as Prime Minister. From 1971 to 1975 Macklin was the Information Officer for the Asian Development Bank, based in the Philippines, and during this time he also wrote and directed documentary films in Asia and the South Pacific. In 1975, on receiving a Commonwealth Writer's Fellowship, he lived in New South Wales, writing four novels and also writing for the Bulletin. He has since studied at the Australian Film, Television and Radio School, while working full-time for the Bulletin and writing film scripts.
In 1980 Macklin was the recipient of the second Australian Film Commission fellowship for an established writer to undertake the course, the first being Tom Keneally. Two years later he founded a video/documentary production company, ARMAK, but also returned to journalism with the Canberra Times. He was Associate Editor from 1999 to 2002. Macklin divides his time between books and screenwriting, and has developed docu-dramas including the eight-part television series, Bushranger Country.
Macklin's work of military history One False Move : Bravest of the Brave, the Australian Mine Defusers in World War II (2012) was a joint winner in the 2012 Canberra Critics Circle Awards for Writing.
Macklin has also published 100 Great Australians (1983) and The Secret Life of Jesus (1990), and with co-author Peter Thompson has written The Battle of Brisbane: Australians and the Yanks at War (2000), Kill the Tiger: The Truth about Operation Rimau (2002), Keep off the Shoreline - The Story of Ron Cashman and the Diggers in Korea (2004), and The Big Fella: The Rise and Rise of BHP Billiton (2009), which won the 2009 Blake Dawson Prize for Business Literature.