WOMAN OF HER WORD DISABILITIES SCHOLAR
Shannan Shaughnessy is an MFA candidate in Screenwriting at The Feirstein School of Graduate Cinema at Brooklyn College. Shannan has a background as an actor, pyrotechnician, assistant in regional theater and scenery fabrication, and a full career as a massage therapist.
Shannan was accepted into the inaugural class at Feirstein in 2015, but two months before classes began she was awoken by her cat unable to speak or move her right side. Scans showed that she suffered a severe stroke in her left middle cerebral artery due to left internal carotid artery dissection. Her attending physician told her that upon arrival, she had less than a 10% chance of survival. After an arduous journey through rehabilitation, much grace and many heartbreaks, and with the support of her doctors, family and friends, Shannan entered Feirstein in 2016 as part of her continuing recovery.
Shannan writes truthful, authentic, darkly humorous stories about socioeconomic issues facing women and underrepresented and/or misrepresented people. Current projects include a TV pilot about a women’s rights activist in 19th century New York City and a web series about a couple living on a houseboat drifting further away from each other and from prescribed society. Continuing projects include a feature film based on her experiences as a young stroke survivor and the often disregard and misunderstanding of people with disabilities, both visible and invisible.