Colleen McCullough, prolific author and national treasure, was a qualified neurophysiologist and worked for many years in hospitals in Australia and the UK, and taught at Yale in the US.
Her first book, Tim, was published in 1974 and became an instant hit – the movie adaptation launched the career of a young actor named Mel Gibson. She is best known internationally for The Thorn Birds, but fans of historical fiction remember her many books set in the past, from ancient Greece and Rome to Australia’s convict colony to the twentieth century wars. They include The Masters of Rome series, Morgan’s Run, and Bittersweet.
She was declared a Living Treasure by the National Trust of Australia in 1997 and appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2006. She died on her beloved Norfolk Island in 2015.
Our 2019/2020 writers residency is named in her honour, and takes place on her estate on Norfolk Island.