Mel Johnston was born in Gisborne is 1972. She attended Otago University in the early 1990s, gaining a BA in Theatre and a Law degree, after which she moved to Wellington and began writing for theatre. She has written five plays, all of them having had their first outing at Bats Theatre. She has also made a documentary about people applying to Creative New Zealand for arts funding, entitled Confidence in Me.
She lives in Wellington, is the mother of two boys, and is currently working on a collection of short stories.