Sean Abley is an award-winning playwright, screenwriter and journalist. He has over thirty plays published by Playscripts, Brooklyn Publishers, Heuer Publishing, Next Stage Press, Stage Partners and Eldridge Plays and Musicals with titles like End of the World (With Prom to Follow), The Adventures of Rose Red (Snow White’s Less-Famous Sister), Horror High: The Musical, Dorothy and the Thief of Oz and Attack of the Killer B’s. His play Popcorn Girlwas the 2nd place winner of the National Partners of the American Theatre Award as part of the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival 2017, and his play Absence Makes the Heart… was a national finalist for the John Cauble Short Play Award at KCACTF the same year. His television writing includes multiple episodes of So Weird(Disney Channel), Sabrina, the Animated Series (Disney/UPN), Digimon(Fox Family), as well as several pilots including Bench Pressly, The World’s Strongest Private Dickwith Ahmet Zappa. His produced screenplays include the B-movies Socket, Witchcraft 15: Blood Roseand Witchcraft 16: Hollywood Coven. He was one on the founders of Chicago’s prolific Factory Theater in 1992 (still going strong as of this writing), has an MFA in playwriting from the Playwrights Lab at Hollins University, and is the creator of the “Gay of the Dead” blog on

  • ATTACK OF THEW KILLER B’S (High School Version)


Sherry Alpert developed SINGLE AGAIN during a playwriting course with acclaimed playwright Kirsten Greenidge and a subsequent course with the Grub Street Creative Writing Workshop. She has been involved with the Playwrights Platform, Boston, where SINGLE AGAIN had three staged readings, followed by a staged reading with Grub Street.  One scene, “Have a Nice Evening,” won the Audience Choice Award for Comedy at the Annual Playwrights Platform New Play Festival at the Boston Playwrights Theatre.  Another scene “Food for Thought” was part of the F.U.D.G.E. Theatre’s “Short Play Festival” at the New Repertory Theatre in Watertown, MA.  A public relations consultant and published fiction writer, Alpert is a lifelong theatregoer with a provocative sense of humor, which has fostered her playwriting, comedy writing, timing and economical staging. With 150-plus post-divorce dates and several relationships from which to draw, she exposes the vulnerabilities we all share.  She has spent most of her professional life doing public relations, with major national media stories for clients.



Evan Baughfman works in a very scary place: a middle school! (He’s a teacher.) He writes all genres, but horror is where he’s most comfortable. His horror fiction has been published in numerous anthologies, including various titles from Black Hare Press and Blood Song Books. Evan has penned a collection of 13 short scary stories titled THE EMACIATED MAN AND OTHER TERRIFYING TALES FROM POE MIDDLE SCHOOL, published by Thurston Howl Publications. 



T. James Belich is an author and playwright who has written more than two dozen plays, which have seen hundreds of productions across the United States and around the world. A longtime actor, his favorite roles include Father Flynn in “Doubt, a Parable” and Sergeant Trotter in “The Mousetrap.” He premiered his one-man physics show “Schrödinger’s Cat Must Die!” at the Minnesota Fringe Festival. In addition to his career as a writer, James has a background in the sciences, having studied physics at Bethel University and the University of Minnesota. Outside of writing, he loves a good cup of tea, reading, and traveling. His favorite destinations include Great Britain, Italy, and Costa Rica. Originally from Saint Paul, MN, James lives in Florida with his wife and son.



Helen Benedict, a professor at Columbia University, is the author of seven novels, five books of nonfiction, and a play. Her just-published novel Wolf Season was called “required reading” by Elissa Schappell and received a starred review in Library Journal, which wrote, “In a book that deserves the widest attention, Benedict ‘follows the war home,’ engaging readers with an insightful story right up until the gut-wrenching conclusion.” Benedict’s previous novel, Sand Queen, was named a “Best Contemporary War Novel” by Publishers Weekly. As a nonfiction writer, Benedict’scoverage of sexual assault in the U.S. military inspired the Academy Award-nominated documentary The Invisible War and instigated a landmark lawsuit against the Pentagon on behalf of victims of military sexual assault. Benedict has published widely and spoken at Harvard University, TED Talks, West Point, the U.S. Air Force Academy, and the United Nations, among other campuses and organizations. A recipient of the Ida B. Wells Award for Bravery in Journalism and the James Aronson Award for Social Justice Journalism, among other awards, Benedict is also recently the author of the book, The Lonely Soldier: The Private War of Women in Iraq, and a play, The Lonely Soldier Monologues





John Patrick Bray (PhD, MFA) has written plays under grants from The National Endowment for the Arts and the Acadiana Center for the Arts in Louisiana. He has earned commissions from theatre troupes in Louisiana, Minnesota, and New York. His full-length plays include Friendly’s Fire (Barter Theatre in VA), Liner Notes (Planet Connections Festivity in NYC), Erik: A Play About a Puppet (FRIGID New York in NYC), Trickster at the Gate (At Hand Theatre, NYC), Christmas in the Airwaves (Lyric Arts Theatre, Minnesota), Dead Movement (Classic City Fringe Festival, Athens GA) and Donkey (Rose of Athens, GA). His short plays have been produced with troupes and in festivals around the country and in Canada, including Academy Theatre’s “Tapas” and GOOD Works Theatre Festival in Atlanta; and the Samuel French OOB Festival, Strawberry One-Act Festival, FRIGID NY, and Planet Connections Theatre Festivity in NYC. His plays are published with Next Stage Press, Original Works Publishing, JACPublishing, Heartland Plays; and in anthologies published by Applause, Smith and Kraus, and The Riant Theatre. A collections of his shorts, titled Cart Before the Horse, is published with Polychoron Press. Bray developed his play Liner Notes into an indie feature with Gregory Bray; it is now available on Amazon Prime (VOD). Also a scholar, Bray teaches at the University of Georgia.



Olivia Briggs is a Los Angeles based writer for both stage and screen. She graduated with a B.A. in theater with honors from Oberlin College, and then earned her M.F.A. in dramatic writing from NYU Tisch Asia. Recent credits include: “The Arrangement” on E! (TV), “Chee Ko Pek” (short film), “Ronnie’s Cabinet” (full-length play), and awards include: Best Screenplay, Flint FIlm Festival, Best Original Play, Thespis Theater Festival, The Jane Chambers Student Playwriting Award, and Olivia was a finalist in the one-hour pilot division at The Austin Film Festival. Olivia is currently a volunteer playwriting teacher for detained youth in the Los Angeles criminal justice system, and is represented by Heroes and Villains Entertainment and The Gersh Agency.



Sarah Rae Brown graduated MCLA with a B.A. in Theatre in 2008. She has dabbled in several genres of playwriting, but her specialty is comedy. In 2019, her full-length play Captain Cobalt vs. the Sinister Scientistwas performed in both NYC and Boston, and was subsequently published in the UK. More recently, Space Team Go! received a “staged” virtual reading produced by Big Sweater Productions. Two of Sarah’s ten-minute plays, ‘Tiffany’ is a Medieval Name and Azathoth Solves All Your Problems For You have been produced by Theatre Three’s Off-Stage, On-line series, and are available for viewing on YouTube. Sarah lives in the Boston, MA area with her two cats, Chester and Cici.



Katherine H. Burkman is a Professor Emeritus form The Ohio State University.  Aside from her numerous academic books, mostly on such playwrights as Harold Pinter and Samuel Beckett, she has published poems, short stories, plays, and a mystery, APRIL CRUEL. Her most recent academic book is THE DRAMA OF THE DOUBLE: PERMEABLE BOUNDARIES. In her retirement, Katherine has led a group called WOMEN AT PLAY for 12 years, is a member now of WILD WOMEN WRITING, and directs plays at The Short North Stage in Columbus, OH. 



Ruben Carbajal writes for stage, screens and beyond. His published theatre works include the 1980’s high-school comedy THE GIFTED PROGRAM; the minimalist love story PORTLAND; and the one-act anthology HOLD AND OTHER SHORT PLAYS. You can also find his plays and monologues in several collections, including the recently published FIVE MINUTE PLAYS and ONE MINUTE PLAYS: A PRACTICAL GUIDE TO THE THEATRE. For screens, he’s been the head writer for Awesomeness TV’s TOP FIVE LIVE, guest-writer for the Fuse Network, and is currently developing a network television series. The beyond includes travelling the globe as a live entertainment writer for the NBA to writing speeches for everyone from celebrities to CEOs.



Chantel Langlinais Carlson is an Instructor of English at Texas Christian University, where she teaches modern drama and poetry, creative writing, film, gender studies, and composition. She is both a playwright and a poet.  She is honored that Next Stage Press published her one-act play, The Exhibit.  Her poetry appears in The Southern Poetry Anthology, Volume VIII: Texas, Writing Texas, The Louisiana ReviewTruck,damselfly press, and The Southwestern Review.  Her poetry chapbook, Turning 25, was published by Nous-zot Press.  Her critical work has also been published in theInterdisciplinary Humanities Journaland the Louisiana English Journal.  She received both her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.  



Jon Christie is a Dallas native actor and playwright now residing in Los Angeles. Jon has written seven full length plays which have all been blessed with life onstage across Dallas and Los Angeles. Jon became a published playwright in 2012. His play Happy No Year, a choose-your-ending holiday whodunit comedy, was a part of the 2016 Hollywood Fringe Festival. Jon’s writing stretched beyond the stage in 2017 when he raised over $16k on Kickstarter in order to film his original web series CONfessionals, which went on to receive numerous nominations and one win at the New Jersey Web Fest. In 2020, Jon was inducted into Collin Theatre Center’s Hall of Fame (his alma mater). 



Susan Cinoman is a playwright and screenwriter whose work is published and produced internationally. She began as a comedy writer and performer in the all-woman comedy group, “The Soubrettes,” in Philadelphia which resulted in one of its hit songs playing on the local radio, “Bimbo Rap.” Her story Mama Drama was featured on the hit ABC comedy “The Goldbergs” in the 2014- 15 season. Her one act play Fitting Rooms has been called “a great American one act” and is featured in Applause Books’ “Best Short Plays of 1996”. Her Off-Broadway plays include Gin and Bitters and Cinoman and Rebeck, which was hailed as “an evening of talent and promise” by The New York Times. Her plays have received numerous workshop productions at The Ensemble Studio Theatre and Naked Angels. The plays Beds and Truth and Sex were recently made into short films by Akvarious Productions in Mumbai, India.Work in development includes the screenplay My Girlfriend at the Time (directed by Susan Seidelman); the pilot, “Blackmail U.” (co-written with ABC Family writer Andrea Abbate); the new play Love and Class in Connecticut (directed by Karen Carpenter of Love, Loss and What I Wore). Cinoman’s new play Guenevere is being developed as part of the Women’s Playwright Initiative at the Ivortyon Playhouse. She is the recipient of The Best Connecticut Filmmaker Award in 2009; The Best Narrative Film at New England Film and Video Festival; an Official Selection by The International Berkshire Film Festival; The Maxwell Anderson Playwrights Prize, and The Aristos Award with Theresa Rebeck



Caroline Turner Cole is a storyteller from Dallas, TX. She writes, acts, and advocates for theatre in schools by teaching after school programs and directing youth theatre. A member of the Dramatists’ Guild, Caroline’s most recent play “A Very Typical Romantic Comedy” was developed in partnership with Dallas Theatre Center’s Playwright Development Program and was well-received at a staged reading produced by Flexible Grey in 2019. In 2018, she completed a short play “Steps”, commissioned by Spark and Echo Arts. Previously, her first full-length play, “Our Space”, developed in collaboration with the Aviary Dallas and in residence at Skyline High School, was one of three finalists in Pegasus Theatre’s Fresh Reads 2 Festival. “Honestly”, a short play, came in 2nd place at Bishop Arts Theatre’s PlayPride LGBT Festival and another work of hers — “Herstorical Penpals” — was featured at Rover Dramawerks festival 365 Women a Year. Her current obsession is exploring connection through the murky lens of the Internet. With so much of our lives now online, she’s fascinated with translating this ‘online life’ into a theatrical setting, deconstructing and reconstructing how we see ourselves and interact with each other.



Amy, a Colorado native, has been involved in theatre and dance since she was very young. She participated in many shows as she was growing up and earned her first paid acting gig when she was 13. She has loved theatre and performing her whole life. She continued to perform through high school and also began down the road to directing.  This took her into college. She attended Stephens College in Columbia, Missouri. Here she received her BFA in Theatre Arts.  While at Stephens, she was given the opportunity to do a study abroad on Semester at Sea. During this time, she visited 9 different countries and was afforded the chance to study the diverse theatre, dance and written art in all of these different places. She still draws on these experiences today. After college she moved to Chicago, Illinois and work in many different theatres in many different capacities. It was here that she truly fell in love with children’s theatre. She also discovered a love for writing and sharing stories. She was given a unique opportunity to join a very prestigious MFA playwrighting program at the University of Nevada. Here she was coach in writing by many talented people and wrote in many different genres. Eventually she moved back to Colorado and is now working as a Director/Choreographer for a children’s theatre she loves. But, she is always thrilled at the chance to stretch her playwrights wings!



Mandy Conner has been teaching at Connally High School in Waco, Texas for over 23 years. She began her love for theatre while attending McLennan Community College and Texas Tech University, where she earned her Bachelor of Arts in English. She has earned 12 trips to the Regional UIL One Act Play Meet (including her original productions Ago, Lafayette No. 1, Should Not Cause Harm and Unclaimed), and has had seven appearances at the UIL State One Act Play Meet (including her original productions of Lafayette No. 1 and Should Not Cause Harm), earning First Runner-Up in 2010.  She recently received the 2018 K-12 Educator of the Year from the Texas Educational Theatre Association. In addition to teaching, directing, and writing, Mandy is a motivational speaker and conducts creativity workshops throughout the state. Mandy resides in China Spring, Texas with her husband Chris and two daughters, Edie and Josie.  



Before moving to Denver, Ken was involved in Chicago theater as an actor, producer, and director. Ken studied for two years at Second City under Josephine Forsberg, a year with Paul Sills, and other well-known Chicago acting instructors. Since moving to Denver, Ken has been concentrating on his writing. He has completed three half-hour teleplays; two feature screenplays, Lotto Olé and No Blues for the Cabman; five one act plays, Jenny, The Party, No Blues for the Cabman, La Petite Fleur, and La Femme de Paris; and two full-length plays, The Party and Sin. Ken is currently working on a new full length play, The Greenberg Family Moves to Mars. In addition, Ken has contributed thirteen plays to Colorado Quickies, which is an annual production of short plays. His plays have been produced in the United States in New York City, Buffalo, San Francisco, Chicago, Denver, Columbus, OH, and many universities, colleges, and high schools. In addition, his plays have been produced in Germany, Canada, Australia, Singapore, and Spain.



Len Cuthbert is the creator and director of the NFP Organization, Fridge Door Live Theatre Company. His plays have won productions in Canada, US and Europe. He has also produced his own work locally at the Fringe, One Act Festival, and independently.,



VICTORIA Z. DALY’s plays have been developed/featured at the Actors Studio, Last Frontier Theatre Conference, ATHE Conference, Warner International Playwrights Festival, Short+Sweet Festivals in Hollywood, Dubai and upcoming in Sydney, Alliance for Jewish Theatre, Berrie Center, Spokane’s KPBX-FM (NPR,) Supersound Scotland Radio, and the Edinburgh Festival, among other venues. She is a Faculty Member in the Dramatists Guild Institute’s Plays in Progress Program and the founder of New York City’s 9th Floor Writers and Actors Collaborative. Education: MFA in Dramatic Writing, NYU/Tisch; A.B. and M.B.A., Harvard; Certificat d’Etudes in theater from L’Ecole Jacques Lecoq.



William Missouri Downs has had over 250 productions of his plays in 14 countries, won numerous playwriting awards, and published 11 plays. He has also published 4 books, including Screenplay Writing The PictureNaked Playwriting, and The Art of Theatre, a textbook used by over 100 universities. He has been a staff and freelance writer on several NBC sitcoms. He has an MFA in screenwriting from UCLA and an MFA in acting from the University of Illinois. Recently he was honored at the Royal Court Theatre in London as a finalist in the Nick Darke Award for playwriting. Also, he’s directed over 40 plays and acted in 20.  



Jeff Dunne is a playwright in the greater Baltimore area. A writer of music and fiction for over three decades, he turned to his attention to the stage in 2011 to align his passion for writing with that of acting. Over the next five years he produced several one-act plays for youth that were performed at libraries and children’s hospitals. In 2015 he completed his first full-length play, which received such positive feedback and recognition in festivals in 2016 that he began writing for stage much more actively. To date, Jeff has written six full-length plays and over forty shorter pieces, including works for radio and screen. His scripts have won numerous awards from both community and professional theaters, and had over four dozen productions across the country. You can learn more about Jeff’s works by visiting



Kevin D. Ferguson is Playwright-in-Residence at Atlantic Stage in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, where his plays Child’s PlaySpinning Jenny and A Thing With Feathers premiered. He is a Teaching Associate in the Theatre Department at Coastal Carolina University. Visit his website at



Allen C. Gardner has always loved storytelling and began writing, acting, and staging little plays at a very early age. He has acted in numerous commercials, shorts, sketches, films, web series, pilots, and plays (which include CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF and ALL MY SONS), and he’s also written and directed the plays WE GOT LUCKY, DUDES DO STUFF, and (alongside his good buddy Jeremy Palmer) GONNABES. In addition to being an actor, playwright, and stage director, Allen writes, directs, produces, and edits independent feature films. In high school, he formed the still thriving Memphis-based film production company Old School Pictures with Brad Ellis, Matt Weatherly, and Mark Norris, and they began shooting sketches, shorts, and features right away. After moving to Los Angeles, he formed the company Open Dialogue Productions with his close friend Gabe Arredondo. Three of his movies (BEING AWESOME, the film version of WE GOT LUCKY, and BAD, BAD MEN) are currently available on multiple platforms, including Amazon. He has two more films that are about to be released, SAVE YOURSELF and COLD FEET. To learn more, visit 



A Colorado native, Scott Gibson is the author of several novels and plays. He was the recipient of The Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers Colorado Gold award for best general fiction and co-won the Steven Dietz Original Playwriting Competition in 2005 for his full-length play, “Someone Else’s Life,” which was subsequently performed in Denver the following year. It was reviewed in the October 29, 2006 edition of Variety, which stated, “Gibson’s work professes nothing more than to ask questions about our lives. He builds the stakes without the gratuitous, heavy-handed devices that seem to be the modus operandi these days, relying instead on the hidden and unspoken.” His short play, “The Last Good Day,” was a winner in the Long Island Public Access Television Original Playwriting Competition and was filmed for broadcast in June, 2008, with subsequent airings in Connecticut and California. Additional works include the comedy/drama “Your Dilly Dilly Heart,” produced by Celebration Works in Denver, CO (2009); “Six Sour Raspberries,” Changing Scene Northwest in Bremerton, WA (2009); “Nocturne, Sort Of,” Love Creek Theatre/Producer’s Club, NYC (2010); the comedy thriller “Kill the Moment,” Rover Dramawerks, Plano, TX (2012); “Spring Cleaning,” Red Brick Theatre, Los Angeles (2014); “Then Paupers Would Ride,” Carrollwood Players, Tampa FL (2016); “Ailurophobia,” Resurrection Theatre, Sacramento, CA (2016), among others. In November, 2016, Scott’s black comedy “Cross Words” won first place in Chameleon Stage Circle’s 17th Annual Full-Length Play Competition in St. Paul, MN where it received a staged reading. His short play, “With Raspberry Jelly in the Middle” had a run at Lucky Penny Productions in Napa, CA in February and March, 2017. His short play, “Spring Cleaning,” was published in Smith and Kraus’s anthology, “105 Five-Minute Plays for Study and Performance.” Theatre Three in Long Island, NY produced his play, “The Kitchen Fairy” in March and April of 2017. Scott’s play “A Little Game” was one of the winners of the International One Minute Theatre Festival and received a performance in Leeds, England in May, 2018. His one-act, “Ailurophobia” was part of City Theatre’s Summer Shorts! Festival in Miami, where it had a six-week run.



John F. Green was born and raised in North Battleford, Saskatchewan, a Canadian farming community, where he went to school and worked as a disc jockey and part-time news and feature writer for local radio station CJNB. His past theatrical experience includes several plays with Oshawa Little Theatre, Whitby Courthouse Theatre, Durham Shoestring Players. And Class Act Dinner Theatre. He has also written a number of stage scripts. You Can’t Dance to Mozart, a romantic comedy, premiered at Class-Act Dinner Theatre in Whitby, Ontario. The play also did a three-week run at the Second Street Theatre in Grande Prairie, Alberta, The Battlefords’ Community Theatre in Saskatchewan, The Peterborough, Ontario Theatre Guild, and Theatre Burlington. A one act psychological drama, The House on Geoffrey Street, was featured in Saskatchewan’s River’s Edge Drama Festival. And a two-act comedy, What Mildred Did! was premiered at the Second Street Theatre in Grande Prairie, Alberta. The play was also featured as the gala opening production for the new Domino Theatre in Kingston, Ontario. Both Geoffrey Street and Mildred are published by Next Stage Press, a U. S. based theatre publisher. Recently finished is The Abbey,a new comedy intended for community theatre fund raising events. Also near completion is a two-act mystery thriller, Number Seven Courtney Lane. He lives in Courtice, Ontario where two new children’s books, Miss Mildred Meets the Bare-naked Owl and a new edition of Junk-Pile Jennifer are scheduled for release from Peanut Butter Press in September, 2018.



Amanda Guthrie has been teaching theatre for several years at various high schools and currently teaches at Kaufman High School in Kaufman, Texas. Her love for theatre began in high school and grew in a small community theatre where she first began directing in her hometown. Amanda earned her Bachelor of Arts in Human Relations from East Texas Baptist University. She has had success in the UIL One Act Play Competition with various shows, including her original work (Ville du Havre and The Fourth Ward).  She also enjoys directing musical theatre and has helped students receive nominations with the Dallas Summer Musical High School Musical Theatre Awards.  Amanda resides in Kaufman, Texas with her husband Keith and three children, Emerson, Elliot, and Ezra. 


Daniel Guyton is an award-winning playwright and screenwriter from Atlanta, Georgia. His stage plays have been produced over 400 times around the world, and he has been published in over 40 anthologies and solo publications, including several of the Best American Short Plays collections. He is a theatre professor at Georgia State University, and is a member of the Dramatists Guild and the Writers Guild of America East. He is also the Vice Chair of the Professional Division of the Georgia Theatre Conference. He recently won the Best Horror Screenplay Award from the Los Angeles Film & Script Festival, as well as the Judge’s Choice and Audience Choice Award for the Short and Sweet Festival in Sydney Australia. For more information, please visit:


Originally from South Dakota, Rand Higbee obtained a Theatre degree from South Dakota State University and a Master of Fine Arts in Playwriting from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. While at UNLV his first full-length play, Sir Isaac’s Duel, was named as an alternate to the National American College Theatre Festival held at the Kennedy Center. Since UNLV days Rand’s plays have continued to gain both productions and awards. He won a 2009 Wisconsin Wrights award for his superhero play The Lightning Bug which has since been published by Next Stage Press. His short play Next! has become one of the most often performed high school one- acts in the country. The 2012 debut production of his full length A Girl Named Destiny at the VenusTheater in Laurel, Maryland, was named as one of the best plays of the year by “DC Metro Theatre Arts.”

Rand currently lives in Hager City, Wisconsin.


Diana Howie’s plays have been performed in Houston, Chicago, Edinburgh, Vienna, and other cities. Her twelve full-length plays have received recognition in competitions in Texas, South Carolina, and Massachusetts. A touring production of “Susanna of Stratford” was sponsored by both the Texas Commission on the Arts and Young Audiences. Her collection of fifty monologues for teens, “Tight Spots,” is available from Pioneer Drama Service. Playscripts, Inc. published her play about Alexander Hamilton, “The Brightest Light” in 2004, and it has been anthologized in “Best Stage Scenes of 2005” (Smith & Kraus). Her romantic drama “The Promise of the Moon” is published by Next Stage Press. Ms. Howie is the bookwriter of an original contemporary musical about a jury on a murder trial (“The Jury is Out!”), the songs of which are on SoundCloud.. Ms. Howie produced an annual New Play Reading Series for local playwrights from 1993- 2013 at Houston’s Country Playhouse, where she was Playwright in Residence from 1997 through 2015.  She holds an MA in Theatre Arts from the University of Houston, studying there with José Quintero and Edward Albee. She is a member of The Dramatists Guild of America. 


Jake Hunsbusher is an early-career playwright from rural Georgia. While he does not always write strictly comedies, Jake believes that humor is an essential part of any piece. Whether the humor serves to exaggerate or to humble. Jake loves pushing and pulling the themes of his work to new extremes and creating wild tonal mix-ups. However, no matter the subject, Jake always makes sure to keep the “spirit of strangeness” alive in all his work. Things are never quite as fantastical or as grounded as you might originally think!



Penny Jackson is a screenplay writer, a playwright, and a novelist. Her first film, MY DINNER WItH SCHWARZEY, based on her published short story, is in post-production. Her plays have been performed in The United States, Scotland, and Dublin, and she is the only American finalist for The Kenneth Branagh Award for Drama at The Windsor Fringe. BEFORE, a play about gun violence was recently chosen as one of the best short plays of 2016. Various awards for her writing include a MacDowell Colony Fellowship, a Mirriliees Fellowship from Stanford University, a Pushcart Prize and The Elizabeth Janeway prize from Barnard College. Penny is a member of the Playwrights/Directors Unit of The Actors Studio and resident playwright at NYMadness Theater company. Her upcoming project is a new full-length play THE BATTLE OF RICHMOND HILL and a full-length screenplay based on her award-winning novel, BECOMING THE BUTLERS. Penny is a proud member of New York Women In Film and Television, The League of Professional Theatre Women, The Dramatists Guild, and The Authors Guild.


Tommy was born in North Carolina and raised in Northwest Indiana. He graduated from Indiana State University with a concentration in playwriting and directing. While there, he was presented with the Angel of the Year: Humanitarian Scholarship, wrote for Indiana’s Gender Hate and Violence Conference, and served as a judge for the Midwest High School Playwriting Competition. His children’s plays, The Big, Bad Bullysaurus, Princess Pigface, Choose Your Own Oz, and Alice the Brave & Other Tales from Wonderland, have all received numerous productions around the country. His one-act campy comedy, Rags to B***hes: A Battle of Wits & Wigs, won Best Short Play at the 14th Annual Downtown Urban Theatre Festival in New York City and his full-length comedy, Eternal Flamer! The Ballad of Jessie Blade, recently played at the historic Cherry Lane Theatre in the West Village. Tommy holds an MFA in Playwriting from the University of New Orleans and resides in Caldwell (NJ) with his husband, Mark, and their dog, Darby. Tommy is a proud member of the Dramatist Guild.


Arthur M. Jolly was recognized by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences with a Nicholl Fellowship in Screenwriting, and in 2017 won theHammond House International Literary Prize for a Screenplay. As a playwright, Jolly is a three time Joining Sword and Pen winner, finalist for the Woodward/Newman Drama Award, and has penned over 60 produced plays, with productions across the US and in Canada, Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia and South America. Next Stage Press works include A Gulag MouseTrashPast CurfewThe Ithaca Ladies Read Medea and a collection of three one acts Thin Lines. Work published elsewhere include Childish ThingsThe Christmas Princess,  Long Joan SilverThe Four Senses of LoveHow Blue is My CrocodileRisingSnakes in a LunchboxWhat the Well Dressed Girl is Wearing, and the short play collection Guilty Moments. Jolly is a member of the WGA caucus, The Alliance of Los Angeles Playwrights, and The Dramatists Guild. Repped by Brant Rose Agency. More at


Bret Jones is the Program Director of Theatre and Director of Media Arts at Wichita State University, Wichita, KS. He is a novelist, filmmaker, and director. He lives in Goddard, KS with his wife and children.


Gene Kato is a playwright, screenwriter, and founder of the publishing company Next Stage Press. His work has garnished awards and found success in various publications and productions. Dedicated to championing the work of lesser-known playwrights, Mr. Kato founded Next Stage Press in 2009, and his company has started to carve out a small niche in the extremely competitive world of play licensing. His plays, typically, have been described as running the gambit between ultra-real and absurdist. While his writing style has his signature voice, it’s been said that none of his plays have the same feel to them. He lives in Commerce City, CO with his wife Jessica, daughters Kira and Harper, and two dogs Remy and Dodger. He is currently writing the first book in the fantasy novel series: The Crystals of Nevin.


Tori writes curiosity-chasing plays that sniff out in-between spaces in big theatre to change the world. Many of them decide to be comedies. Originally and proudly from Pittsburgh, she lives in NYC and grows plays around the country. Recent works include How the Baby Died (Bay Area Playwrights Fest, Ingram New Works), Seph (Araca Project, Princess Grace Finalist, Fresh Ground Pepper), Air Space (Kilroys Top 5, Ingram New Works), Truth/Dare (Project Y, Best Ensemble Pittsburgh Fringe, Nashville Top 10), How to Be a Widow (Ellie Award), Egypt Play (InterAct Finalist, Playwrights Center Mentorship), Episode #121: Catfight! (Yale Cabaret), and others. Having written for Colonial Williamsburg’s Emmy Award-winning PBS education series, Tori has been named an Emmy Nominee, Kilroys Lister, Jerome Finalist, 3-Time Princess Grace Finalist, 2-Time O’Neill Semifinalist, Playwrights of New York Nominee, and some other things. She is affiliated with The Lark, The Playwrights Center, New Georges, Ensemble Studio Theatre Playwrights Unit, Fresh Ground Pepper, & the Dramatists Guild. Currently, she’s a member of Project Y Playwrights Group. Some of her short plays are published by Next Stage Press. AB, Harvard. MFA, NYU Tisch Asia (Singapore).






Lisa Langford is a playwright and actress. After working with Dr. Maya Angelou to develop Dr. Angelou’s line of social expressions, she earned an M.F.A. in play-writing from Cleveland State University. Her play, Rastus and Hattie, received a Joyce Award (w/ Cleveland Public Theatre) and was a finalist for the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center National Playwrights Conference and the Bay Area Playwrights Festival. Lisa’s other plays include The Art of Longing, a finalist for the Leslie Scalapino Award for Innovative Women Performance Writers; How Blood Go, an August Wilson New Play Initiative reading series selection at Chicago’s Congo Square Theatre and Global Black Voices selection at the Roundhouse Theatre in London UK;  Teddy Bear Mountain, a children’s play about grief; and two ten-minute plays, The Bomb and Revolt. Ing, which was part of the I Am…Festival at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago. She is an Artistic Associate of Black Lives Black Words and a member of Dobama Theatre’s Playwrights’ Gym in Cleveland Heights, Ohio, and Honor Roll!, an advocacy group for women+ playwrights over 40. Lisa is also a graduate of Harvard University.


Donna Latham (she/her) is a feminist playwright from Chicago, currently based in Houston. Her plays have been produced coast to coast in the US and in Northern Ireland, Ireland, England, France, Scotland, and Indonesia. And We Will Share the Skywas a KCACTF David Mark Cohen Playwriting Award Finalist and recipient of the National Theatre for Young Audiences Playwriting Award from the University of Central Missouri.  Most Wretched Deathbed Fever Dreams of Edgar Allan Poe earned the Design Storm Collaboration Award at Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival. The Haunted Widow Lincoln was a semi-finalist for the Playwrights First Award and the Vittum Prize. Donna’s short plays are included in  The Best American Short Plays 2016-2017,The Best American Short Plays 2014-2015,2016’s Best Ten-Minute Plays, and She Persisted: New Plays By Women Over 40, 2021.A resident playwright at Rising Sun Performance Company in NYC and member of Honor Roll Playwrights, she’s a proud member of the Dramatist Guild.


KERR LOCKHART has been active in theater as actor, director, music director, writer, and producer for fifty years in a variety of educational, professional and community contexts. A graduate of Amherst College and Fordham Law, he worked for the William Morris Agency, CNBC/MSNBC, Hallmark Entertainment and a variety of other enterprises in television and film. He co-produced several arts documentaries, including YOU’RE THE TOP: THE COLE PORTER STORY and GLENN MILLER: AMERICA’S MUSICAL HERO. When he became a teacher, he wrote THE SCHOOL INSPECTORS, a variation on Gogol’s THE INSPECTOR GENERAL for his students. That play has been previously published. Kerr is very proud to join the playwrights of Next Stage Press.



Rob Matsushita is an actor, filmmaker, editor, and playwright residing in Minneapolis, Minnesota. His work has been performed in New York City, San Fransisco, Wisconsin, and Chicago, among other places. He can also be recognized for his work as a writer and actor on the popular YouTube series, “Chad Vader.” He currently has a web series of his own called “Stay Home,” an anthology series based on his short stories, which can be seen at


Bryan Maynard is based in Houston, TX where he has spent the majority of his life.  From the works of the greats through the centuries to the deep space travels of Star Trek to the hey-day of horror from Universal Films to the slapstick comedy of the Three Stooges, Bryan has found inspiration in every facet of society for his own writing.  Some of Bryan’s produced work includes:  The Show Might Go On, The Admiral’s Inheritance, Give/Take {co-written with Michael Weems}, Waiting for Othello, Re: Kill the MessengerNext!, She Said/She Said,Real Eyes, Face It, The Element of Sunrise, The Tortoise and the StareLove at First Write, It Takes a Toll, Help Yourself, Past Due, O Hell No! (or The Moor I See, the Moor I Know), St. Patricia’s Day, A Well Kept Man, If You Have to Axe (You’ll Never Know), Darcy Denied and the Super Fantastic Uber Musical!. Lunatic Friends, and You Say Goodbye (I Say Hello).  A few of his works commissioned exclusively for NEXT STAGE PRESS include: White: The Lady Who Would Not Cry {part of the 64 SQUARES play collection}, Knight: The Man Who Would Not Die {part of the 64 SQUARES play collection}, Board to Death {part of the GAME NIGHT play collection} as well as more to come! Bryan is an active board member of Cone Man Running Productions, a Houston-based theatre company dedicated to bringing original works to the stage and giving playwrights a venue to debut their work.  


Mark Medoff received a Tony and Olivier for CHILDREN OF A LESSER GOD and was nominated for an Academy Award and a Writers Guild of America Best Adapted Screenplay Award for the film script of CHILDREN.  He received an OBIE Award for WHEN YOU COMIN BACK, RED RYDER?Mark is a Distinguished Achievement Professor at New Mexico State University where he has been on faculty and an artist in residence since 1966.  Summer of 2018, Mark’s son-in-law Ross Mark’s will direct Mark’s adaptation of Joe S. Bullock’s WALKING WITH HERB. Mark and his wife of forty-five years, Stephanie, have three daughters and eight grandchildren.


Gerald P. Murphy is a retired high school English teacher, a playwright, composer, songwriter, singer, banjo, guitar and mandolin player, and very poor actor who has the worst memory for lines in the galaxy. He has had more than thirty plays and musicals published and has had his shows performed in over twenty countries. In his leisure time he plays in a music group called “The Celtic Cats” in Yreka, California. He has a lovely wife, three grown children, and four grandchildren.

Mary Kathryn Nagle

Walter L. Newton


Philip Nichols is an award winning critically acclaimed Director, Actor, Special Effects Designer/Creator, Ventriloquist, Puppet Maker, Puppeteer, Screenwriter, and Playwright. As a playwright, Nichols has written several plays including RENFIELD THE DRACULA PLAY that was the basis for his feature film RENFIELD THE UNDEAD, which screen wrote. His current plays in the works are adaptations of THE PIED PIPER OF HAMELIN, Charles Dickens A CHRISTMAS CAROL, and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s SHERLOCK HOLMES AND THE SUSSEX VAMPYRE, DEATH BY SHAKESPEARE, HOMICIDAL HOLIDAY.


Since graduating from Amarillo College and West Texas A&M University with degrees in Theatre Arts and Radio, Television, and Film, Brad Nies has been employed with Blinn College-Brenham as Director and Professor of Theatre Arts and Communication Studies.  He has taken post-graduate courses in directing, playwriting, and script analysis through Texas A&M University and Texas Tech University, and he has had three plays published.  Finalist for the 2017 Queensbury Theatre’s New Play Reading Series and the 2017 Theatre Victoria Annual Playwriting Competition, Brad was also the winner of the 2012 TETA Playwriting Contest for Texas Residents.


(Sean O’Connor– Sean was a member of NYC’s famed Circle Rep Theatre. Nine of his plays have won national Best New Play awards. They’ve all been published by both NextStage Press and JAC Publications, and they’ve each been produced many times apiece in NYC, in regional theaters, and workshopped in Dublin. Two were translated and published in French, and will be produced there by the Baz’Arts Company. He’s written films for USA Network, and Nasser Entertainment. Three of his own screenplays won national awards. His work has garnered many grants and fellowships. He often directs his work, in both theatre and film, as well as acts in it—plus, in scores of other plays, leads on two network TV shows and several other indie films.
NEW WORK: He recently directed and acted in his short film, “Summer of ’70,” based on his award-winning feature script, “Imitate the Sun.” He will direct the feature next summer. This February, he directed his award-winning play “Broken Birds” at the SOOP Theatre Festival in Pelham, N.Y. “Miss Hollywood,” a new play, just won NETC’s esteemed Aurand Harris Playwriting Award. It opened in Silverado, CA, in November. It has been chosen, along with his award-winning “New Truck for Paulie,” his award-winning “World of Sinatras” and his brand new “Teenagers in Love” by the Drama Notebook to be distributed throughout the American school system for production. His recent play “The Unraveling,” recipient of a Puffin grant, and selected for the Actors Studio Elia Kazan Festival, is now also a screenplay, with plans jelling to shoot it.. “Who Collects the Pain,” an award-winner from the ‘90s, will open again in NYC next year, directed by Chuk Obasi. Another new play, “Wound,” won the nationally acclaimed Writers Digest Award, beating out over 6,000 other new American plays. It was a Semi-finalist for the esteemed O’Neill Playwrights Conference. And he’s just finished a TV pilot, “King Dollar.” He recently appeared onstage in NYC in a lead role in Robert Chase’s “Let Me Fluff Your Pillow.” Sean is currently writing a novel, “American Roulette,” to be finished this spring. He received his B.A. from Columbia University, and his M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Queens College. 


Named a recipient of the Mary McCloud Bethune Award (National Council of Negro Women, 2015) and one of the “100 Creatives” of 2014 by the Houston Press, Ms. O’Neal has been a writer, director, and producer for over 20 years and has most recently become a published playwright. She is the executive director of Shabach Enterprise, a non-profit theater company based in Houston, TX and the owner of Watch My Groove Ent., LLC. Her most recent critically acclaimed productions include: Ms. Lily’s Groove,  Just A Few Feet AwayBagel AnyoneFly In The Windshield (which was Broadway World’s “Editor’s Pick for Best New Play of 2013) & In One Breath. In 2013, she founded the national play festival, Fade To Black, celebrating the new works of Black playwrights, which is the first of its kind for Houston, TX. In 2014 she served as the assistant director for the Pulitzer Prize-winning production of “Ruined” written by Lynn Nottage in its Houston regional premiere. She directed the production of  Intimate Apparel, also written by Lynn Nottage in 2015. She is currently a member of the Dramatist Guild, a former board member of Scriptwriters/Houston and is very active in the Houston theatre community.


Rebecca Gorman O’Neill was born in Akron, Ohio; she left at age 17 to attend Dartmouth College.  When she won the Eleanor Frost playwriting award her Junior year, she was relieved to have an excuse to stop acting.  Rebecca went on to earn her M.F.A. in Dramatic Writing from Carnegie Mellon University.  Rebecca’s original plays have been produced across the United States and in Canada, and her plays Tell-Tale and The Greater Good are published through Eldridge Publishing and Next Stage Press, respectively.  Rebecca is a Professor of English at Metropolitan State University of Denver, where she teaches playwriting, screenwriting, cinema studies, and the graphic novel.



Jeremy Palmer died once. But he totally came back. His temporary death during a botched heart surgery left him technically a cyborg and pointed him toward a career working in the disability community, culminating when Jeremy Palmer Day became an actual thing in Denver. Seeing how his near death affected his family left him feeling guilty, and thus fascinated with writing about guilt and how it manifests in unexpected ways. He got his MFA in Writing for Film & Screen from the USC School of Cinematic Arts and currently works from his home in Los Angeles where his wife and two dogs let him stay as long as he keeps it down. He also likes Legos.



Gwen Parker is a high school English and Theatre teacher and is currently starting her last year before retirement in 2021. She has taught for 21 years, the last 12 at McGregor High School in McGregor, Texas, and has directed UIL One Act Play for 19 years. She graduated in 1985 from West Texas State University (now West Texas A&M University) in Canyon, Texas, with a Bachelor of Science in Biology and English Education. Like a lot of teachers in small schools, Gwen got her start in theatre when she was asked, “Have you ever been in a play before? Yes? Well, you’re our new Theatre teacher and One Act Play Director!” Nineteen years later, she is still teaching, directing, and loving theatre. Gwen lives in Clifton, Texas, and her family includes her husband, Todd, their two sons, Gage and David, and their new daughter-in-love, Jan.



George Pate is a playwright, actor, standup comedian, director, and teacher who currently serves as Associate Professor in Drama and Theater at the University of South Carolina at Beaufort. His plays have been produced and read in New York, NY, New Orleans, LA, Abingdon, VA, Columbia, SC, Greenville, SC, Charleston, SC, and Athens, GA. He won the 2008 Tennessee Williams National One-Act Playwriting contest for his play Indifferent Blue. His play Sanguine was developed by Barter Theater over two years as part of their Appalachian Festival of Plays and Playwrights. He was also a regional finalist for Comedy Central’s Open Mic Fight. He is also a scholar, having recently published Enter the Undead Author with the Fairleigh Dickinson University Press, and he has published articles in the Journal of Dramatic Theory and Criticism, Theatre Symposium, and Theatre Journal. He is, as the last sentence demonstrates, an advocate of the Oxford comma. He lives in Bluffton, SC with his beautiful and patient wife and two sons. 


Carlos Perez has a M.A. in English from the University of Missouri—Kansas City (a professional writing degree in playwriting and screenwriting) and a B.F.A. in Speech and Theatre from Avila University. His published stage plays include The Terry Stinger Show, published by Next Stage Press, In Hyding, published by Off The Wall Plays, Caught Between Two Worlds, published by Dramatic Publishing, Native American Folktales for Fun, along with his original, Folktales for Fun, both published by Pioneer Drama Service, Inc., The Adventures of Christina and Viperina, the Misadventures of a Frog Girl, and How the Beetle Got Her Colors licensed by Drama Notebook.  His one act stage play, Two Good Reasons placed second the 2016 William Faulkner Literary Awards, giving him two years in a row of success for that competition, with his original play Cleansing Acts placing in the 2015 William Faulkner Literary Competition.  A full production of Cleansing Acts premiered at the 2013 LaBute New Theatre Festival in St. Louis, Missouri by the St. Louis Actors’ Studio, and was named winner of the Riverfront Times newspaper’s Best of 2013 Stage Plays.  Carlos’ fiction and poetry has been published in Potpourri, Midwest Medical Ethics, Prism, Dark Chapter Press, Imagine This!, Penny Zine Magazine, Number One, Pure Slush Books, and The Ecphorizer.  Ten of his writer-for-hire screenplays have been produced, along with one of his own original screenplays, and one more is in pre-production.  He has three published collections of short stories: Tales from a Disturbed MindSchool Days, and 24 Tales to Pass the Time.  His produced screenwriting and playwriting work includes: Trick-Or-Treat, The Game, Red Moon Lake, Monster: The Prehistoric Project, Jeremy’s World, Agent Beetle, The Occultist aka 666 The Ritual, Vamps in the City, Escape from Area 51, The Other Side, Star Quest: The Odyssey, Don’t Look in the Cellar, and The Terry Stinger Show—A Parody.



Dr. Page Petrucka is an actor of the stage and screen, theatre director, and award-winning, playwright. She received her PhD in Fine Arts from Texas Tech University, and is currently a professor for two major universities in Utah. Her play Return to Roswell (which she both wrote and acted in) was originally performed in Texas and the Czech Republic, won the Texas Educational Theatre Association Playwriting award in 2013, and will be performed later this summer in the Great Salt Lake Fringe Festival.



Brian C. Petti is an award-winning playwright who has been produced internationally by such companies as Ten Grand Productions, Theatre of NOTE and 5th Wall productions. MASQUERADE was staged at Cherry Lane Theater in NYC and NEXT YEAR IN JERUSALEM was the winner of the Humboldt State University National Play Contest in California, where it received a student production. THE MEASURE OF A MAN and ON THE EXPECTATION OF WHITE CHRISTMASES are published by JAC Publishing and Promotions, and BANSHEE is published by Next Stage Press. ECHOES OF IRELAND was produced in County Cork, Ireland by the Skibbereen Theatre Society and is published through Eldridge Plays and Musicals. TEN SECONDS was produced by Motivational Theatre as winner of the Carlton E. Spitzer Excellence in Playwrighting Award. THE LOVE SONG OF SIDNEY J. STEIN was part of the NYC All Out Arts’ Fresh Fruit Festival and it was the winner of Las Vegas Little Theatre New Works Competition. Most recently, BANSHEE was produced by Theatre of NOTE in Hollywood, CA and LIKE DROWNING was produced by 5th Wall Productions in Charleston, SC in 2016. His newest play, HEROINES, will debut in September, 2018.



Jerry Polner’s Like Money in the Bank, a romantic comedy about the founding of the Federal Reserve System, completed a run at the Theatre Row Studio Theatre in New York in 2016.  Quit the Road, Jack, a comedy about the North American Free Trade Agreement, was a guest production of TheaterLab the previous year.  More recently, Jerry’s play Works for Me was chosen as an alternate for the William Inge Theater Festival.  His earlier play Fix Number Six was presented by the Planet Connections Theatre Festivity and was nominated for six Planet Connections awards including Outstanding Playwriting for a New Script.  Jerry’s short play History Ends Here was presented by the Workshop Theater Company, and his short plays Florence Farewell, Gone With The Treplev, Thank You For Applying, and Saute Your Facewere produced by the Brooklyn Playwrights Collective at the Manhattan Theatre Source, the Brecht Forum, and Galapogos Artspace.  He has also contributed short plays to the first eight seasons of New York Madness.  Included in his other full-length plays are Half Baked, produced by the Story People, Man Overboard, produced by High Five Productions, and the comedy revues National Lunch and What’s So Funny (co-author) presented by Brooklyn Playworks and Manhattan Punch Line Theatre respectively.  Jerry’s plays have been published by Samuel French and Next Stage Press.  He is a company member of New York Madness and is also a member of the Dramatists Guild and the National Writers Union.  



Ken Preuss is a former children’s magician and improvisational comedian who became a teacher to guarantee himself an audience five days a week. His published one-acts for teens, including Shuffling, A Moving Experience, Alienated, and Campsite Chaos, have been performed by schools in 46 of the 50 States and abroad. His short plays, Binged There-Done That, Poetry, Prose, and… Pirates, Every 7 Minutes, and more have been produced in festivals in the US, Canada, the UK, and Korea. Ken lives just outside of Orlando, Florida with his wife, sons, and too many pets.



Barry’s plays have been performed in Canada, the UAE, and throughout the U.S. They include “Triangle” and “The Porch” at the Samuel French Off-Off Broadway Short Play Festival and “The Lollipop Lady” and “Dead Body” by Turtle Shell Productions. His comedy, “A Different Blend of Friendship” won the New Jersey Wordsmiths Award. Barry’s audio-drama credits include full-length adaptations of “Swiss Family Robinson” and “Mysterious Island” for Colonial Radio Theater and “The Bodysnatcher” and “The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” for KSVR’s Radio Theater Project. His film credits include penning the feature-length, VR film “Maren’s Rock.” Barry is a member of the Witherspoon Circle, American Renaissance Theater Company, and the Dramatists Guild. He has a degree in Dramatic Writing (NYU) and English Literature (Centenary University).



Carol M. Rice is a playwright, director, actor, and producer. She has an MA in Drama (Playwriting Emphasis) from Texas Woman’s University. Her full-length plays Sharing the Stage is MurderMurder at the Orient Burlesque (both of which received a Column Award Nomination), The Three MusketeersAround the World in 80 Days, and The Belle of West Texas have been seen locally in D/FW. She has been produced all over the U.S., and she is published through Brooklyn Publishing, Smith & Krauss, and Next Stage Press. Carol can also be found on NPX.



Rebecca Salomonsson is a playwright, fiction writer, and occasional poet living outside of Denver, CO. She has a BA in Theatre Arts from the University of Massachusetts/ Boston, a certificate in performance from the National Shakespeare Conservatory, and she is currently working on her MA in Genre Fiction from Western Colorado University.When not working, Rebecca can be found spending time with her husband and two children and their mini-Schnauzers, Phoebe and Oliver.




JUDY TATE is a 25-year member of Ensemble Studio Theatre and is the Producing Artistic Director of The American Slavery Project, a theatrical response to revisionism in our national conversation around enslavement, Jim Crow and the reverberations of those eras and policies today.  ASP, supports African descended writers who write about the era, creates conversation in the community, educates and produces original work and makes vital connections between Black beginnings in America and today.  ASP was one of the first companies to pivot during the 2020 pandemic to create audio dramas with soundscaping and minimal visual scores.  Black Women and the Ballot,  about the tiny rebellions Black women have mounted to progress voting rights has been viewed over 5K times.  Judy’s productions and/or workshops include Fast Blood (Civic Ensemble, EST, Passage Theatre, Hartford Stage, The Lark, Epic Theatre Ensemble); Slashes of Light, The Kitchen Theatre Company and Civic Ensemble; Sex in the Kitchen (EST Octoberfest, CAP21),  In the Parlour about black women suffragettes, Civic Ensemble and The Kitchen Theatre; The Point and  Mistaken for Genius (both at The Women’s Project Lab) and more Theatre awards include: Manhattan Theatre Club playwriting fellowship; the New Professional Theatre Playwriting Award; and the  Women in Arts and Media Collaboration Award (honored finalist).  Her television writing includes Another World, Days of Our Lives and As the World Turns.  She’s won four daytime Emmys and a Writers’ Guild of America award. A professional actor for many years, Judy has worked in theatres throughout the United States and in Southern Africa.  As a teaching artist she’s worked with playwriting students in alternative schools, prisons, shelters, from reservations and townships both independently and with MTC, TDF and the International Theatre Project.  Judy is the founding artistic director of Manhattan Theatre Club’s company within a company: Stargate Theatre, a work and social readiness theatre program for justice involved young men.   It’s her 14 years of work with high school inmates on Rikers Island that inspired her TV pilot, Lockdown High. She is an alumna of New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts conservatory program where she studied at Stella Adler and was an honors graduate receiving the Founder’s Day Award, Seidman Award and Beinecke Award for excellence in acting and academia.  



Nancy Temple lives in Boston.  She has written both short and full-length plays.  Her short plays have been produced in a number of festivals, including Playwrights Platform, Theatre One’s Slice of Life, Acme Theatre’s New Works Winter Festival, Image Theatre’s Fem Noire Festival, Flush Ink Productions, Fifth Avenue Theatre, and Eden Prairie.  Her full length “The Caregivers” will have a staged reading at North Shore Readers, Newburyport, Mass, in December of 2020. “The Caregivers” is a finalist for publication in ARTemis Wisdom Anthology (2020). “Victoria for President! 1872,” a play written for high school drama clubs, was published by Next Stage Press. Nancy is currently enrolled in the MFA program in Creative Writing at Lesley University, Cambridge, MA. 


Lauren Tunnell is the author of numerous produced and published one act plays as well as educational materials for classroom use. She is a graduate of Hamline University’s MFA program in Writing for Children and Young Adults. She lives in Houston with her husband and two sons.


Jon Tuttle is Professor of English and Director of University Honors at Francis Marion University.  His plays, which include The Hammerstone, Drift, Holy Ghost, The Sweet Abyss, Palace of the Moorish Kings and most recently Boy About Ten,  have won national and regional awards and received over 100 productions across the country.   He has received the South Carolina Theatre Association’s Founder’s Award and fellowships from the South Carolina Arts Commission and the South Carolina Academy of Authors.   His collections include The Trustus Plays (Intellect, 2009) and Two South Carolina Plays (Hub City, 2009).  He has also edited a book-length collection, David Kranes: Selected Plays (Level 4 Press, 2011).  


Leighza F. Walker is a performance artist, actor, director, storyteller, set designer, producer, and award winning playwright who studied with Edward Albee. Her play Fishing won the Broadway World Editor’s Choice Award for Best New Play in 2013. Her one woman shows, Leighzaland: Declaration of a Sovereign Nation, Observations from the LeighzaSphere, and Welcome to the LeighzaHood premiered at Station Theater in 2015. Leighza was selected in 2012 by the Houston Press as one of “100 Creatives” and is the Executive Director (and Queen) of Leighzaland, a non-profit organization dedicated to producing new work and supporting artists in their endeavor to create art. Leighza currently serves as Festival Manager for Mildred’s Umbrella Theatre Company’s iconic Museum of Dysfunction.


Christine Weems is a founding board member of Cone Man Running Productions. Christine also directs, occasionally writes and seldomly acts.  She is a big sports fan – particularly Longhorn football, Astros baseball and Rockets Basketball.  By day, she is a trial lawyer and is running for judge for the 281st civil judicial district court in Harris County ( Everything she does is made possible by Michael, Tommy, Jack and Sammy – her amazing husband and children.  Also, she was in Office Space.


Michael Weems is an award winning Houston based playwright.  His plays have been seen across the United States and several other countries.  Recent publications include: Five Fears of Fatherhood(Original Works Publishing), Dream Lover(Smith & Krauss Best New American Plays – 2014), A Few Miles Away(Plays, The Drama Magazine for Young Audiences), FragmentsCount to ThreePawnChess, and A Common Martyr (Next Stage Press).  Recent productions include: OkayBetterBest (54 Below, NYC dir. Marcia Milgrom Dodge) and Fullerton College, Prize Fight (T. Schreiber Studios NYC and Arts for Tri-State, WV), Hold Me Tonight (Changing Scene Theatre, WA). Michael is a Board Member of Cone Man Running Productions (winner of the Houston Press 2017 Mastermind Awards), and a recent graduate of the MFA Playwriting program at the University of Nebraska at Omaha (named Outstanding Writing Graduate – Master’s Level).  He is a proud member of the Dramatist Guild of America. 



Gary’s professional theatre career spans over a quarter century, primarily as an actor, but in the past decade, his focus has turned increasingly toward writing stageplays and screenplays. In 15 years as an associate artist at the Foothill Theatre Company, Gary served as literary manager, and wrote stage adaptations of two novels:  The Diary of a Forty-Niner by Chauncey Canfield (about a naïve New Englander in the California gold fields), and Bram Stoker’s horror classic Dracula, which was translated into Russian and produced by the Maxim Gorky Drama Theatre in Vladivostok, where it remained in the repertory for two seasons (2000-01). A third play, Evermore (about Edgar Allan Poe’s tender love for his wife Virginia, and his disastrous feud with the editor Dr. Rufus Griswold) premiered at Foothill Theatre Company in the Fall of 2007, and won the Sacramento News & Review critics’ award for “Best New Play in the Region”. A screen adaptation of Evermore is currently under option to Votiv Films. Gary’s latest stageplay, Of Kites and Kings (about Benjamin Franklin’s falling out with his son William over the American Revolution), premiered at Sacramento Theatre Company in 2015, and enjoyed a subsequent production the following year at Theatre on the Ridge. Gary currently lives in Grass Valley, California, with his wife Carolyn and their dog, Gracie.


Meredith Yanchak attended Duquesne University where she received her Bachelors of Arts in Theatre Arts. At Duquesne, she served as the president of the Duquesne University Red Masquers and participated in a myriad of productions as an actor, director, technician, and playwright. She was also a member of the Duquesne University Chamber Singers.She received her Masters of Arts in Theatre Education from Emerson College in 2008. (Go Lions.)She has toured as an actor with CLIMB Theatre, Inc. in Minneapolis, MN and has worked in various roles with PrimeStage Theatre, Little Lake Theatre, The Summer Company, Temple Civic Theatre, Pittsburgh Public Theatre’s Young Company, and Montclair State University’s TheatreFest. Her short plays have been produced at the Pittsburgh New Works Festival and the Future Ten Festival, as well as the various schools at which she has served as a high school theatre director.


Eddie Zipperer‘s plays have won over 30 contests and awards and have been performed across the U.S., and Canada as well as in Australia, Korea, the U.K., and South Africa. 13 of his plays have been published by Dramatic Publishing Co., Eldridge Plays & Musicals, Pioneer Drama, Brooklyn Publishers, Smith & Kraus, and Southern Theatre Magazine


G. William Zorn is a professional actor, director, dramaturg, playwright and educator, currently living in central Illinois. He has a Ph.D. from Western Michigan University and an MFA from Ohio University. His plays have been produced all over the country and have won many awards, including the Mark Twain Prize for Comedy Playwriting from the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in 2009. Some of the companies which have produced his work are: Fancy Pants Theatre, Working Theatre Collective, Speaking Ring Theatre, Bailiwick Repertory, Pride Films and Plays, Theatre Babylon, City 3 Theatre and The 4th Unity Festival. You can find out more information on Bill at