Shywanee Leona Manson (born June 6, 1974) is an American poet, author, screen writer, playwright, producer and ghost writer. Manson wrote and produced four stage plays during 2005 and early 2012, starting with Apology From One Sista’ To Another, which started off as a poem in 2003. After writing such poem, she noticed that the piece was recognized by women all over, who would comment that they had experienced such dilemmas as depicted in the prose (domestic violence). As a result, she decided to transform the poem into a book – her first novel, of the same title. The book has since become very popular, with Manson selling the product mainly through word of mouth and her website.
Through encouragement from family and friends and with the increasing knowledge that the topic of her book was one women across the country could relate, it was suggested that Manson transform the novel into a stage play. In 2005, the stage play “Apology From One Sista’ To Another” debuted at The Duncan Theatre in Chicago, Illinois, selling out six of eight shows. In 2007, Manson was chosen for Chicago’s Principal For A Day arranged by Chicago’s Mayor Richard J. Daley and was asked to bring her stage play to the Chicago Public High Schools. In 2007, Manson and her actors performed a free show for North Grand High School located on Chicago’s west side. Thereafter, she presented the stage play at The Herman Hall Theatre in Chicago, IL and in 2010, staged it again at the Harold Washington Cultural Center in Chicago, IL, starring Ryan Gentles of Tyler Perry’s Madea Goes to Jail. The play sold out to capacity and again, received rave reviews. The play toured to the State of Michigan with Terrell Carter of Tyler Perry’s Madea’s Family Reunion headlining such tour. Apology From One Sista’ To Another, the stage play, was also nominated for a Chicago Truth Award in the “Best Stage Play” category.
In 2011, Manson staged her second stage play, My Sista’ I’m Sorry, which received lots of attention as this stage play brought HIV Awareness to the communities of Chicago, IL. The stage play was a major hit and sold out to capacity. Following the production, the HIV/AIDS theatrical outreach awareness partners Joseph F. West, an award-winning epidemiologist, teacher and author, lead a round table discussion along with Christian Community Health Clinic, who provided free and confidential HIV Testing/Education after the show. A portion of proceeds from the production was donated to HIV/AIDS Research, Education and Resource Organization. Due to the success of the show and the awareness of which the show brought to the community, Manson was presented with the Georiga Doty Hepatitis and HIV Organization’s Entertainer of the Year award.
Manson has since debuted her third stage play – a comedy – My Brotha’, I Apologize, starring Comedian Damon Williams, Terron Brooks (from “The Temptations” movie) and Edgar Gemini Porter (R&B Group Men at Large) on August 25, 2012 at her alumni, Thornton High School Theatre. The play received a standing ovation and an encore performance is continuously being requested.
On January 25, 2014, Manson staged “When You Cry, I Cry” starring Gary “Lil G” Jenkins (R&B Group, Silk), Gemini Porter (R&B Group, Men at Large) and Comedian Brian Da Wildcat Smith. This particular play was designed to shed light on the after effects of miscarriages in marriages. The theme has now changed to a subject that desperately needs to be addressed in the City of Chicago which is “Senseless Crimes Against Our Youth”. Manson plans to debut this very emotional stage play in the City of Chicago on August 23, 2014. While the play touches on a very emotional subject, there is still lots of comedy within the production to lighten the mood of such topic.
In March 2006, Manson was asked to be a panelist for the How To Forgive and Let Go Seminar at the V103 Expo For Today’s Black Woman, which also featured author, Terry McMillian. She was also a special guest on Zelda Robinson’s television show, Zelda Speaks, and a special guest on The Other Winfrey Show hosted by Earl Winfrey.
Manson has participated in several 220 Communications’ book fairs, book signings, and has held panel discussions for the company’s Authors and Artists event, featuring Omar Tyree. She has been featured in Rolling Out Magazine, and her stage play received a rave review in the North Lawndale Newspaper and several websites.
She continues to sell her novel via her website, all online book stores, and book signings throughout Chicagoland. She was also a columnist for Karl Ray’s Model Expressions magazine.
Manson continues to write and is a noted spoken word artist who won a 106.3 (Call Letters) poetry contest and performed live on the station. She has also performed poetry at the UpNext! Show in Chicago, Prysmatic Dreams Poetry Show/The New Word Order Net Slams in South Carolina (www.prysmaticdreams.com) (www.thenewwordorder.com), Spoken Word CafePoetry Live, Secrets and other locations throughout the Chicagoland area.
Manson has also completed a Screenplay for her book, Apology From One Sista’ To Another which will begin filming July 20, 2014, and will also be filming her first short film, The Other Side of Amrak in 2014.
Her second novel, Forgive Me Not, was released in June of 2013 and is also being sold on her website.
For bookings and more information, please visit Manson’s website at www.shyfoxproductions.com