Wednesday, May 9th, 2012

Please Join The Splitsider Comedy Book Club

Book clubs are a complicated lot. On the plus side, you get a necessary peer-pressure push to read. On the negative, you have to go places and your "friends" probably don't want to read all your comedy nerd books. I'm like you and so I decided to start The Splitsider Comedy Book Club (not to be confused with the Splitsider Book Club Comedy Club, in which we teach you to book comedy clubs). The goal is present you, our readers, a space to virtually gather and discuss a book, knowing that others will also gather and discuss said book. We'll pick a book and then a month or so later, depending on the page count, we'll have a post that looks at the book and provides topic for discussion (maybe we'll even interview the author).

The first matter at hand is figuring out what book to pick and that is completely up to you. Is there anything you've really wanted to read, maybe you even own it already, but just haven't had the motivation to crack it open? Based on the comments below, we will choose the first book.

Here are some suggestions but really you can request anything having to do with comedy:

-William Knoedelseder's I'm Dying Up Here: Heartbreak and High Times in Stand-up Comedy's Golden Era
-Sarah Silverman's The Bedwetter: Stories of Courage, Redemption, and Pee
-Bill Carter's The Late Shift: Letterman, Leno, and the Network Battle for the Night
-Darrell Hammond's God, If You're Not Up There, I'm F*cked: Tales of Stand-Up, Saturday Night Live, and Other Mind-Altering Mayhem
-Chris Gethard's A Bad Idea I'm About to Do: True Tales of Seriously Poor Judgment and Stunningly Awkward Adventure 
-Mel Watkin's On the Real Side: A History of African American Comedy

I look forward to hearing from/reading with you (catch phrase?).

Sponsored Content
  • LeoSpacemanMD

    Great idea. I'd be most interested to read either Chris Gethard's book, or the previously unlisted above, Kasher in the Rye

  • davalus
  • Phil

    Born Standing Up is pretty good, as is Zobie Spaceship Wasteland.

  • Hallie Cantor

    so down. i would love an excuse to finally read Live From New York.

  • http://twitter.com/reportermike Mike Dang

    I woud also like to read Chris Gethard's book.

  • http://twitter.com/DevinRosni Devin Rosni

    Kasher in the Rye would be sweet, but I'm game for any of books already listed.

  • eliza

    let's do darrell hammonds book! because i already have it!

  • http://twitter.com/beermestrength beermestrength

    I would vote for Bad Idea I'm About to Do, Hammond's book, or Zombie Spaceship Wasteland.

    Live From New York would be a good one too…I already own a copy but it's been a year or two since I read it last.

  • Hambulance

    I'm in! But, maybe not Bedwetter?

    [just because I've already read it and I'm selfish]

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-Abramowitz/2522187 David Abramowitz

    I'm down. My picks would be:
    Live From New York
    War for Late Night
    Confederacy of Dunces (internet says its one of the funniest books ever if not actually about comedy)

  • http://twitter.com/dustindrury Dustin Drury
    • anon

      just read this. it's awesome.

  • http://www.twitter.com/elisecz Elise Czajkowski

    I love this idea! I was going to start reading The Bedwetter today anyways, so it gets my vote, but all these books sound great. Also, Bossypants. 

  • Akiva

    Live from New York

  • Ryan Gunther

    I'm reading The Late Shift right now, so… screw the book club, I'm gong to keep reading that.

  • Strykerspurlock

    I want to read "Agent of Evolution" just because I'm a huge Bill Hicks fan. For anybody that has read his biographies, though, which is better: "Agent of Evolution" or "American Scream"? 

  • http://twitter.com/philmclaughlin Phil McLaughlin

    And Here's the Kicker is an awesome read, as is Born Standing Up. Other recommendations for future consideration: Comedy at the Edge: How Stand-up in the 1970s Changed America; How to Talk Dirty and Influence People; The Chris Farley Show.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmy-Callaway/688820056 Jimmy Callaway

      I second all of these.  Heartily so.

    • Jlpinel1210

      The Chris Farley Show is one of my absolute favorites!

    • http://twitter.com/Joshonthenet Josh Sieg

      Reading Born Standing Up right now!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jimmy-Callaway/688820056 Jimmy Callaway

    I'll also vote for Gethard's book, 'cause I've already read it but have yet to discuss it.

  • http://twitter.com/megh_wright Megh Wright

    Nice idea! Obviously Live from New York rules all, but I think And Here's the Kicker would be the perfect book to start with. Seems better to go with a wider array of voices in the beginning instead of a really focused biography or, in Live from New York's case, a focus on just one show. But yeah, all of these suggestions are really awesome.

  • Maggie

    GETHARD'S BOOK. Or Kasher in the Rye.

  • Jlpinel1210

    I've been dying to read Darrell Hammond's book! Right now, I'm reading Warren Littlefield's book "Top of the Rock" about the beginning days of Must See TV. It's pretty good. Mindy Kaling's memoir is also hilarious.

  • BonzoGal

    David Abramowitz: "Confederacy of Dunces" is a masterpiece that will have you falling off your chair laughing.  I guarantee.  But it's definitely not about comedy.

    "Born Standing Up" is great.  What about "A Liar's Autobiography" by Graham Chapman of Monty Python?

  • SNLabat


    Gasping for Airtime. Jay has some terrific stories in here, especially the ones involving Farley.

  • Shecky Borgnine-Truffaut

    Write-In: Daddy's Boy – Chris Elliott

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Melissa-Ragsly/100001684347741 Melissa Ragsly

    I am currently reading The Bedwetter, but am dying to read Bill Carter's The Late Shift. Make me read it Splitsider!

  • http://twitter.com/ronaldjock Ronald Jock

    The bible.

  • Grace

    Here's the Kicker and Kasher and the Rye have my vote. I have already read Darrell Hammond's and Sarah Silverman's books but if others would like to read it I would read them again they were so good.

  • http://peanutbutterjellytime.myopenid.com/ peanutbutterjellytime

    Paul Feig's Superstud

  • WF Householder

    Going Too Far – The Rise and Demise of Sick, Gross, Black, Sophomoric, Weirdo, Pinko, Anarchist, Underground, Anti-establishment Humor by Tony Hendra, although it may be hard to find, but copies are available on Amazon. It's a good look at the rise of comedians like Rodney Dangerfield, Lenny Bruce, Mort Sahl as well as such comic staples as National Lampoon and SNL.

  • lmandrake

    I'm Dying Up Here is sitting next to my bed asking to be read. Maybe if it is picked I will read it, and it can leave me alone.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Galen-Andrews/14835526 Galen Andrews

    "The Extra Man" and "My Less than Secret Life" by Jonathan Ames (creator of Bored to Death) are both hilarious. Neither are really about comedy but in "My Less than Secret Life" he talks about some of the comic performances he's particapated in over the years

  • Suzanne Hill

    I want to read Chris Gethard's book.

  • drewish princess

    George Carlin's Brain Droppings

  • Jess F

    Carlos Kotkin's PLEASE GOD, LET IT BE HERPES!

  • Melissa Mahoney

    I'm up for Live From New York, Born Standing Up, Gasping for Airtime, Darrell Hammond's, Kasher in the Rye, or Mindy Kaling's. Anything but Bossypants! It wasn't listed but now if someone writes it in, my vote will cancel theirs.

  • Rekha


  • http://conversations.nokia.com Phil at Nokia

    "Your wildest dreams, within reason." was my fav from last year. It's written by the same guy who did "And here's the Kicker".