And Here's the Kicker: Conversations with 21 Top Humor Writers on Their Craft

Mike Sacks, Author Writers Digest Books $17.99 (337p) ISBN 978-1-58297-505-4
Veteran journalist Sacks conducted dozens of interviews with the top humor writers of the last century, and the result is a whiz-bang collection of Q&As that will school readers just as often as it provokes laughter. The assortment boasts elder statesmen including Dick Cavett, 93-year-old Irving Brecher (who wrote shtick for the Marx Brothers and Milton Berle) and Mad magazine's Al Jaffee, who reminisces about reading American comic strips during his 1930s boyhood in Lithuania. High notes include David Sedaris, with the bestselling humorist confessing to cringing when he reads earlier writing, including breakthrough Me Talk Pretty One Day: ""I used to exaggerate a lot more than I needed to. So when I needed readers to believe me, they didn't."" Other contemporary writers offer up equally revelatory tidbits, especially Marshall Brickman (Annie Hall) and Allison Silverman (The Daily Show), but would-be humorists will appreciate most the nuts-and-bolts knowhow regarding the industry. Though it's decidedly testosterone-heavy, Sack has compiled a lively compendium sure to captivate anyone who loves a good comedy.
Reviewed on: 07/06/2009
Release date: 07/01/2009
Ebook - 350 pages - 978-1-58297-988-5
Paperback - 562 pages - 978-1-63064-011-8
Open Ebook - 354 pages - 978-1-58297-989-2
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