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Pitch Wars Interview with Melanie Dixon and her mentor, Kate Foster

Monday, 10 October 2016  |  Posted by Nikki Roberti

PW Interviews

Our mentors are editing, our mentees are revising, and we hope you’re making progress on your own manuscript! While we’re all working toward the Agent Showcase on November 3rd-9th, we hope you’ll take a moment during your writing breaks and get to know our 2016 Pitch Wars Teams.

And now, we have  . . . 

Melanie Dixon

Melanie Dixon – Mentee


Cackling Kate

Kate Foster – Mentor



Melanie: Why did you choose Kate?

I found out about Pitch Wars just two days before it was due to open to submissions. I love deadlines! I chose Kate by watching the recording of the video stream of mentors and I knew she was right for me as soon as I saw her. I wrote her name in my notebook and put a big red circle around it. I was excited about Kate being an editor as well as an author. There was something about Kate that just felt right, and already I’m sure I made the right choice.

Kate: Why did you choose Melanie?

The Witch Catcher caught my attention from the opening lines of the query. The concept was so fresh and unique. And on reading the opening pages, I was hooked by the sleek, addictive tone. Something so dark and tense was hiding beneath the words and I just couldn’t wait to find it. Melanie’s submission went straight in the YES folder, and stayed there until the end!

Melanie: Summarize your book in three words.

Witches, music, fear.

Kate: Summarize Melanie’s book in three words.

Twisted. Unique. Eerie.

Melanie: Tell us about yourself. What makes you and your MS unique?

I am a writer based in Christchurch, New Zealand. I write middle grade novels as well as short stories and flash fiction for adults. I also teach creative writing to an amazing bunch of 10-12 year olds at the School for Young Writers. I love helping to nurture the next generation of writing talent. When I’m not writing you can find me hiking into a tramping hut with my kids, somewhere in the New Zealand wilderness.

My manuscript, The Witch Catcher is a unique take on the concept of witches – these are dark clouds of malevolent energy, witches as you’ve never seen them before. My heroine Evie, age 13, has to overcome her own fears and doubts in order to realise her own destiny, to become the witch catcher. The Witch Catcher was short-listed for the Storylines Tom Fitzgibbon Award in 2015 and I’m looking forward to seeing it re-emerge at the end of pitch wars, better than ever.

Kate: Tell us about yourself. Something we might not already know.

Erm, I play flute and used to be a gymnast. I also burp a lot, like I drink lots of Fizzy Lifting Drinks all the time. I don’t know why. I have a thing for cake and marshmallows too.

Check out Kate Foster’s latest release . . .

Winell Road: Beneath the Surface

Twelve year old Jack Mills lives at 5 Winell Road and probably has the world’s weirdest neighbours. Like freakishly weird. And to top it off, he lives with Mum (nosy, interfering, a hideous cook) and Dad (unsuccessful inventor of the Camera Belt and Self-Closing Window). All in all, it’s a boring, embarrassing, dead-end place to live. So when Jack arrives home from school one day, a close shave with a UFO is the last thing he expects. But the fact it doesn’t abduct him, and that no one else – not even Mum – sees the gigantic flying saucer hovering over the street, adds a whole new layer of strange. Soon after, an alien encounter threatens Jack’s life and he becomes embroiled in a galaxy-saving mission. With the assistance of his new neighbour, frighteningly tall Roxy Fox, he discovers Winell Road is hiding secrets – secrets Jack might wish he’d never uncovered.


Thank you for supporting our Pitch Wars Teams! And don’t forget to stop by the Agent Showcase starting November 3rd to see how our teams do in the final round.



Filed: Interviews

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