Young Playwrights' Theater inspires young people to realize the power of their own voices.

Sheralyn Saunders

Promising Playwright May 2007

Sheralyn Saunders is the picture of confidence and creativity. Her play, Say Goodbye, was featured on March 26th at New Writers Now. At Busboys and Poets after the show, she is all light and energy, flashing hands and bright smiles. Yet, as a dramatist, she’s not afraid to work in darker tones.

"Don’t be afraid to be different when you write. You can’t go wrong. It’s self expression. It’s you and the pen. You can bring anything to life," Sheralyn says.

In Say Goodbye, Sheralyn explores the relationship between a single father and his teenage daughter as they struggle to reshape their lives after the death of her mother. In the final scene, the father’s inability to protect his daughter, despite his training as a police officer, becomes painfully real and he nearly strikes his daughter. The daughter then makes a bold entreaty for respect in the face of his rage.

"My mom is a single parent. You rarely hear about single fathers. I wanted to put a twist on how things work," Sheralyn says. "I hope people will be understanding. You can’t be afraid of life. You will make mistakes but then you can say, ’I lived through it, so I know what to do next time.’"

Her friend and mentor, Sheilynn Wright, smiles knowingly at a table nearby. "She’ll make you think," Wright says, laughing, "But I don’t want her to get too carried away. I want her to be seventeen sometimes."

Sheralyn is completing her senior year at HG Woodson High School in Ward 7. She’s hoping to attend Trinity College and major in communications.

Sheralyn is undaunted by her mentor’s words of caution. She laughs confidently and says, "You’ll see me soon, so watch out."