Gillian Rubinstein was born in England, the younger of two sisters, in the village of Potten End, on 29th August 1942. She moved to Drayton, in Berkshire, when she was seven. She had two dogs (Remus and Sparky) and a rabbit (Skippy). She was educated at St Helen' and St Katharine', Abingdon, where her best friend was Jenny Whitehead, and Queen Anne's School, Caversham, where her best friend was Eileen Mayne Reid. Queen Anne's was a boarding school, and she did not like it much. At school she was good at making up poems and stories, English, History and French. She was bad at Maths.
Gillian studied French and Spanish at Oxford University, has worked as a research assistant, an editor with a publishing company, a journalist, a film critic, a cook, and a cleaner. She and her husband Philip, moved to Australia in 1973. She has three children: Matthew, Tessa and Susannah. She has lived in Sydney, Byron Bay, Adelaide and Goolwa (South Australia).
She wrote her first book, Space Demons, in 1986. She won the Children's Book of the Year Award in 1989 for Beyond The Labyrinth and again in 1995 for Foxspell.
She likes reading, bush walking, swimming, movies and animals. She
writes novels, junior novels, picture books, poems and plays on an Apple Mac Powerbook. She claims to get ideas from being interested in everything and everyone and drives a Subaru Sports Wagon. Her current pets are: a black Labrador called Libby, a tortoiseshell cat called Treacle, and a ginger cat called Little Orange Cat.
At the moment she is working on a sequel to Galax-Arena, called Terra-Farma, and a fourth Jake and Pete story.