The Mirror


Joshua Young



A woman’s workout device starts giving her advice well beyond the day’s exercise regiment.




Joshua Young was a proud member of The Public Theater’s 2018-2019 EWG and the 2020 Project Y Playwright’s Group.  His plays include Lime-A-Rita Racist (The Public’s 2019 Spotlight Reading Series), Red Room on a Dark Web (Primary Stages Drills 2019 Reading Series), Appalachian Pachinko! and My Guggenheim Play, a true story about unreported corporate corruption.  He was a 2019 Melnick Award Finalist and a 2018 Horton Foote Scholar at the Sewanee Writers’ Conference.  His work has been recognized as a finalist or semifinalist for The O’Neill, SPACE on Ryder Farm Working Farm, PlayPenn, The Ground Floor at Berkeley Rep, Freshground Pepper, and Mabou Mines Resident Artist Program.  He’s a founding member of The Playwriting Collective, a playwright driven initiative aimed to support folks from lower economic backgrounds.  He’s been a laborer most of his career and sometime public speaker.  



1. When did you start writing plays? If you had a moment where you realized you wanted to write, what was it?


I wrote my first play when I was 18 or 19. The play was about a bunch of buddies throwing a party for a friend who’d just gotten out of jail. I knew I had to become a writer when I realized the people I knew growing up; my family, my rust belt and Appalachian communities, my friends… our stories and struggles and victories were deeply human and worthy of sharing to the outside world.


2. How did you come to write your OOB play? Was there a particular inspiration behind its creation? How has it developed?


How many people over the past year have had to work at home, shelter at home, or stay at home with a partner or lover… only to realize, upon spending every waking minute with that person, that they’re awful to be around. I wanted all those folks dealing with that realization to feel a little less alone. The last piece of the puzzle was seeing all the ads for Peletons and talking TVs and devices that (almost like a cult) preach platitudes to you about how good you did, how great you are, etc. I put those two ingredients in the oven and baked at 450.


3. What are 5 words that describe who you are as a playwright?


hellfire hopeful soul driven fighter


4. What/who are some of the major influences on your writing?


Stephen King, HP Lovecraft, Isaac Asimov, Arthur C. Clarke, Mary Shelley, Shirley Jackson


5. What’s one fact someone would never guess about you?


I’m functionally ambidextrous.


6. What are some of your favorite plays?


Macbeth, The Lady Aoi, The Crucible, In A Word, Woyzeck, Golden Boy, The Iceman Cometh


7. Any new projects you’re working on or shameless plugs?


I’m working on a graphic novel adaptation of my play Red Room on a Dark Web with illustrator Phoebe Corde and a new horror film project with writer Emily Claire Schmitt.