About Michael



The title of my first book, SIDELINED,​ holds  special meaning for me. Personally, at the end of 2008, I found myself  sidelined from the life I knew: laid off from my full-time job,  disconnected from long-time friends, and facing tremendous uncertainty  with really no idea how to move forward. After a few years of treading  water, I decided to reboot my life. I think many people out there can  relate. So to do that I decided to go back to the beginning.

I  was born in Baltimore, Maryland where the David Wade series largely  takes place. I embraced the research that brought me back in touch with a  town, a state, I had long since left. The city streets and landmarks  came alive for me again and I remembered fond childhood memories and  discovered family connections and history; for example, my grandfather  had built his business at Clipper Mill Park which is featured in the  story.

The David Wade series is a murder mystery seeking to explore a very timely question: how far would you go to take back what is yours? The main character, David Wade, has lost his career, his passion, and everything that gave him his identity. 

While  this series has everything a reader would classically expect from a modern, fictional murder story, for me, the murders serve as vehicles to  explore by what measures do we as humans define ourselves, what happens  when those are stripped away, and how far are we willing to go to  reclaim the lives we lost.

BORDERLINE is the first book in my Jenny Ackerman Series. It features  a NEW character in a NEW setting facing NEW challenges, I  am able to more deeply explore old questions, while asking and answering  NEW ones. A female main character brings a fresh perspective as well.

In the debut novel of my {newest} LENNY SPEARS series {PHANTOM PAIN​:  2018}, I probe the grief, depression, rage & acceptance surrounding  permanent physical disability. To fulfill a promise, and save the one  he loves, wheelchair-bound former detective, Lenny Spears, must call a  broken body & misanthropic spirit to action all while breaking free  from past regrets & clinging to a fragile hope for a bright &  purposeful future. 

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Michael David Manley was born in Baltimore, Maryland.

He is the author of the DAVID WADE Mystery Series: SIDELINED, VINDICATE, OUTCAST, GRUDGE, SLOW BURN & INSIDE OUT​​,​ as well as BORDERLINE, a mystery novel featuring Jenny Ackerman.

In  2018, he launched a brand-new series: featuring a wheelchair-bound  former homicide detective named LENNY SPEARS who debuted in the frenetic  novel: PHANTOM PAIN.

​He formerly served as Content Director and Co-Host of TWISTED, a monthly podcast devoted to the analysis of landmark true-crime cases.

Mr. Manley has published articles spotlighting a myriad of issues confronting people with disabilities, like social isolation and affordable housing.

​He graduated Summa Cum Laude from The University of South Florida earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in History.

He currently resides in The Raleigh Triangle of North Carolina. 

What I've Learned...


1.  A writer cannot properly develop his characters until he first  visualizes them in his mind. This is achieved only through consistent  effort & concentration.

2.  For the AUTHOR, writing a novel is comparable to a marathon: the effort  represents days, even years, of slow & steady progress. Yet, for  the READER, the experience of the novel should be compared to a SPRINT:  the aim is that the reader becomes so captivated by the story that  he/she cannot stop turning pages. If anything, no matter how  well-written, hinders that effect... DELETE IT!

3. Allow ample time for proofreading & editing. At a minimum, read through your work three ( 3 ) times: once for formatting, another for grammar & lastly for content.