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Margo Kingston was born in Maryborough, Queensland, in 1959. She grew up in the northern sugar city of Mackay and graduated with an Arts-Law degree from the University of Queensland. She practised as a solicitor and lectured in business law before joining The Courier-Mail (before Rupert Murdoch took it over). She has been a political journalist for the Times on Sunday, the Sydney Morning Herald, the Canberra Times and The Age, and was chief of staff at the Sydney Morning Herald's Canberra bureau for two years. She was Jana Wendt's political researcher for Channel Nine's A Current Affair and Phillip Adams's 'Canberra Babylon' commentator on ABC Radio's Late Night Live for five years. Her 1999 work Off the Rails: The Pauline Hanson Trip (Allen & Unwin) won the 2000 Dobbie Award for best first book by a female writer.

At the time of writing Not Happy, John!, Margo was the political commentator for the Sydney Morning Herald online, the founding editor of its interactive journalism experiment Webdiary and a political columnist for the Sun Herald.

She took Webdiary independent in 2005 and retired in December that year due to ill health. After three years studying for a nursing degree, Margo has deferred her final year to co-publish and edit Australians for Honest Politics. She sees AFHP as a new citizens' journalism project in the tradition of Webdiary, which closed in July last year.