Alyson Shelton wrote and directed the award winning feature, Eve of Understanding. She wrote and created the comic, Reburn, which successfully funded the first arc (Issues #1-#4), on Kickstarter.The Night We Met, was selected for the 2nd round of the 2021 Sundance Creative Producing Lab. Additionally, her essays have appeared on The New York Times, Ms., Hobart Pulp, Survivor Lit, Dorothy Parker's Ashes and Little Old Lady (LOL) Comedy Blog. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram@byalysonshelton where you can watch and participate in her IG Live series inspired by George Ella Lyon's poem, Where I'm From.
Alyson Shelton loves to create characters, especially powerful and complicated female ones. She began with acting and dancing at a young age but realized she liked pouring herself into creating characters from their initial stages. At Northwestern University, she earned a degree in Theatre and Creative Writing for the Media. After a couple of years in the "real world," she returned to academia, earning her Master of Fine Arts at University of Southern California in Cinematic Arts. For over a decade, Alyson dedicated herself to the world of Film and Television, working as a producer in non-fiction television and writing several screenplays including, Bright Side (Female Eye Film Festival workshop participant) and the award-winning film, Eve of Understanding, which she also directed.
Alyson stepped back when she had her first child. Now, reconsidering that time, she realizes she was completely drained, exhausted from the trauma of her childhood combined with the toxicity of the business. She was convinced and believed she “had nothing left to say.” And was relieved that her fear of being “just a mom” was unfounded. She loved the anonymity and necessity of taking it a day at a time as a mother of two young children.
When her younger child entered pre-school she started to realize she might have something to say. Just maybe. She began writing screenplays but this time with one key difference, she wrote them for herself. What she would like to read. To see. No attempts to please people who would never be her audience. Instead, she wrote for herself and her friends, the ones who told her they would be there when she decided to write again. She wrote two new screenplays, award-winning Tell Me Something True and Reburn, which she is currently adapting into a comic book with artist Elise McCall and producer, Jessica Petelle.
She wrote and created the comic, Reburn, which successfully funded the first arc (Issues #1-#4), on Kickstarter.
In the past couple of years, she has dipped her toe into essay writing. For years, mentors encouraged to write about her life but that felt equal parts ridiculous and terrifying. Eventually the appeal of being able to share her voice and words without needing a green light seduced her into getting past her own hang-ups.
In her first published essay at Ms. “The Repercussions of Trauma as a Former Patient of Dr. George Tyndall” she wrote frankly and insightfully as a survivor of complex trauma still struggling with PTSD. She is a proud contributor to Survivor Lit a literary magazine dedicated to amplifying the voices of sexual assault survivors.
Other essays explore the humorous side of her chaotic childhood, those featured in Little Old Lady Comedy Blog and Bending Genres. She is deeply inspired by David Sedaris' idea that “Everything is funny...eventually.” And does her best to find humor in the darkest of circumstances. She is at work on a memoir about the lifelong process of finding her joyful self while untangling the threads of her childhood trauma.
In late 2020, Alyson completed a psychological thriller screenplay, The Night We Met and the script was selected for the Second Round of the 2021 Sundance Creative Producing Lab.
Just recently, inspired by the Where I'm From poem by George Ella Lyon and associated prompts, Alyson shared her own Where I'm From poem on Instagram and encouraged others to share theirs with her via IG Live. She strongly believes that everyone of us has a unique and important story to tell and this Where I'm From series taps into that with the added bonus of skipping small talk for the real nitty-gritty.
Alyson loves writing and collaboration. These moments of creativity have worked hand in hand with her own trauma recovery to make the unbelievable days and nights of the Covid pandemic, livable. She loves writing and creation and is open and excited about all forms.
Thank you for joining her.
Bachelor of Science in Theatre -
Master of Fine Arts in Cinematic Arts-
University of Southern California