ONLINE EVENT: Heidi Pitlor - "Impersonation" in conversation with author Jennifer Haigh
Heidi Pitlor, author of The Birthdays and The Daylight Marriage, presents Impersonation, a timely, insightful, and bitingly funny story of ambition, motherhood, and class. Heidi will be in conversation with Jennifer Haigh, author of Heat and Light.
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"By turns revealing, hilarious, dishy, and razor-sharp, Impersonation lives in that rarest of sweet spots: the propulsive page-turner for people with high literary standards.” —Rebecca Makkai, author of The Great Believers
Allie Lang is a professional ghostwriter and a perpetually broke single mother to a young boy. Years of navigating her own and America’s cultural definitions of motherhood have left her a lapsed idealist. Lana Breban is a powerhouse lawyer, economist, and advocate for women’s rights with designs on elected office. She also has a son. Lana and her staff have decided she needs help softening her public image and that a memoir about her life as a mother will help.
When Allie lands the job as Lana’s ghostwriter, it seems as if things will finally go Allie’s way. At last, she thinks, there will be enough money not just to pay her bills but to actually buy a house. After years of working as a ghostwriter for other celebrities, Allie believes she knows the drill: she has learned how to inhabit the lives of others and tell their stories better than they can.
But this time, everything becomes more complicated. Allie’s childcare arrangements unravel; she falls behind on her rent; her subject, Lana, is better at critiquing than actually providing material; and Allie’s boyfriend decides to go on a road trip toward self-discovery. But as a writer for hire, Allie has gotten too used to being accommodating. At what point will she speak up for all that she deserves?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Heidi Pitlor is the author of the novels The Birthdays and The Daylight Marriage. She has been the series editor of The Best American Short Stories since 2007 and the editorial director of Plympton, a literary studio. Her writing has been published in the New York Times, the Boston Globe, the Huffington Post, Ploughshares, and the anthologies It Occurs to Me That I Am America: New Stories and Art and Labor Day: True Birth Stories by Today's Best Women Writers. She lives outside Boston.
ABOUT THE MODERATOR
Jennifer Haigh is a novelist and short story writer. Her novel HEAT AND LIGHT won a Literature Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and was named a Best Book of 2016 by The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal and NPR. Her previous books include FAITH, THE CONDITION, BAKER TOWERS and MRS. KIMBLE, winner of the PEN/Hemingway Award for debut fiction, and the short story collection NEWS FROM HEAVEN, winner of the Massachusetts Book Award and the PEN New England Award in Fiction. Her short stories have been published in Granta, The Atlantic, The Best American Short Stories and many other places. She lives in Boston.