Laura Annawyn Shamas was born and raised in Oklahoma, and has lived in various places across the U.S., including Tulsa, Denver, and Los Angeles. She writes in multiple genres: theatre, non-fiction, fiction, film.
She graduated from UCLA (B.A. in Theater), the University of Colorado at Boulder (M.A. in English/Creative Writing), and Pacifica Graduate Institute (M.A. and Ph.D. in Mythological Studies). Shamas began studying mythology in 1997, and received her Ph.D. in 2003.
Shamas has written over forty plays and has had many plays and essays published, as well as a dramatic writing textbook (Playwriting for Theater, Film and Television, 1991). Her archetypal study "We Three": The Mythology of Shakespeare's Weird Sisters was published in 2007 by Peter Lang USA. She has worked in film as a screenwriter and as a consultant. Her newest book is Pop Mythology: Collected Essays (Telemachus Press, 2012).
Her multicultural background includes Chickasaw, English, French, Irish, Lebanese, and Scottish heritage. She is an enrolled member of the Chickasaw Nation and is married to award-winning writer Jon Klein. Her playwriting is archived in the Native American Women Playwrights Archive at Miami University, Oxford, Ohio.
Her play Pistachio Stories is analyzed in an essay by Dalia Basiouny in "Descent as Dissent: Arab American Theatrical Responses to 9/11" in Political and Protest Theatre After 9/11: Patriotic Dissent (Routledge, 2012, Jenny Spencer, ed.), pages 148-154.
Shamas' play Chasing Honey is analyzed in an essay by Yvette Nolan entitled "The Collapse of Worlds in Laura Shamas's Chasing Honey," in Enacting Nature: Ecocritical Perspectives on Indigenous Performance (Peter Lang Publishers, 2014, Birgit Dawes and Marc Maufort, eds.), pages 105 - 115.
Memberships: Women In Film, League of Professional Theatre Women, Writers Guild of America west, and the Dramatists Guild.