We Play Ourselves: Jen Silverman with Dana Delany (VIRTUAL EVENT)

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After a humiliating scandal, a young writer flees to the West Coast, where she is drawn into the morally ambiguous orbit of a charismatic filmmaker and the teenage girls who are her next subjects.

“A blistering story about the costs of creating art.”—O: The Oprah Magazine (LGBTQ Books That Will Change the Literary Landscape)

Not too long ago, Cass was a promising young playwright in New York, hailed as “a fierce new voice” and “queer, feminist, and ready to spill the tea.” But at the height of all this attention, Cass finds herself at the center of a searing public shaming, and flees to Los Angeles to escape—and reinvent herself. There she meets her next-door neighbor Caroline, a magnetic filmmaker on the rise, as well as the pack of teenage girls who hang around her house. They are the subjects of Caroline’s next semidocumentary movie, which follows the girls' clandestine activity: a Fight Club inspired by the violent classic—but with a twist.

As Cass is drawn into the film’s orbit, she is awed by Caroline’s ambition and confidence. But over time, she becomes increasingly troubled by how deeply Caroline is manipulating the teens in the name of art. When a girl goes missing, Cass must reckon with her own ambitions and ask herself: In the pursuit of fame, how do you know when you’ve gone too far?


Jen Silverman is a New York–based writer and playwright. She is the author of the story collection The Island Dwellers, which was longlisted for a PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for debut fiction. Her plays have been produced across the United States and internationally, and she also writes for television and film. She is a two-time MacDowell Colony fellow, a member of New Dramatists, and the recipient of a New York Foundation for the Arts grant, a Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Fellowship, the Yale Drama Series Award, and a Playwrights of New York Fellowship.

Dana Delany Broadway: Translations, A Life; Off-Broadway: Collective Rage: A Play in Five Betties(MCC), Dinner With Friends, Blood Moon; Regional: Goodnight Nobody, McCarter Theatre Center, The Night of the Iguana, A.R.T., The Parisian Woman, South Coast Repertory, Much Ado About Nothing, Old Globe, Dinner With Friends, Geffen Playhouse, Wilbur Theatre; TV/Film: “Hand of God”(Crystal Harris), “Body of Proof” (Dr. Megan Hunt), “Desperate Housewives” (Katherine Mayfair), “China Beach” (Colleen McMurphy), “Kidnapped,” “Pasadena,” “True Women,” “Wild Palms,” Tombstone, Housesitter, Fly Away Home, Light Sleeper, Batman: Mask of the Phantasm. Can next be seen as Edith Roosevelt in “The American Guest” on HBO.

Buy the Book: 
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We Play Ourselves: A Novel By Jen Silverman Cover Image
ISBN: 9780399591525
Availability: Not On Our Shelves - Available to Order
Published: Random House - February 9th, 2021