Posts tagged as mike sacks

Pre-Order 'Poking a Dead Frog,' Mike Sacks's Follow-Up to 'And Here's the Kicker'

Mike Sacks has written a sequel to his hit 2009 book And Here's the Kicker: Conversations with 21 Top Humor Writers on their Craft. The new series of interviews — called Poking a Dead Frog: Conversations with Today's Top Comedy Writers — includes new insights from Amy Poehler, Patton Oswalt, Mel Brooks, Adam McKay, George Saunders, and more and is now available for pre-order on Amazon ahead of its June 24th release. Order it now for extra comedy nerd credit.

(Full disclosure: Our Managing Editor Bradford Evans contributed to the book.)

Talking with Mike Sacks about 'And Here's the Kicker', Interviewing Comedians, References in Comedy, and More!

Six weeks ago, you guys chose And Here's the Kicker as the first book of the Splitsider Comedy Book Club. Great job! I hope you enjoyed it and got as much out of it as I did. What Mike Sacks achieved with And Here's was tremendous. He got a rare level of access to these comedic geniuses and they did not disappoint. Just to be able to read about how Bob Odenkirk, Dick Cavett, or Marshall Brickman thinks of a joke is profound; to be able pass on the legend of Milton Berle's penis is even more so.

Recently, I discussed the book and some of its [...]

The First Splitsider Comedy Book Club Book Is…

And Here's The Kicker by Mike Sacks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! AHTK won the popular comment vote, narrowly beating Chris Gethard's A Bad Idea I'm About to Do (which will definitely be the second book we'll do). In a way, it's the perfect book to start the series, as it offers so many different points of view. The book features 21 interviews with some of the most revered comedy writers ever from George Meyer to David Sedaris to Jack Handey to Bob Odenkirk to Harold Ramis – seriously, I kind of just want to list all the amazing names – each offering their unique perspective on comedy.

So, what's next? [...]

Ladies and Gentlemen, May I Have 15 Minutes of Your Precious Time?, by Scott Rothman and Mike Sacks

Excuse me, ladies and gentlemen. My name is Foster Richardson, and my family and I are currently homeless. I just got out of the penitentiary and I am trying to be a better man. As you know, times are tough, not as tough as they used to be, sure, but still pretty tough, so if you can spare anything, even a quarter, just one quarter of a million dollars, well, that would go a long, long way to helping my family and I finish the renovations we started two winters ago on our beach house in Wainscott.

Now I know what you’re saying. Why would this guy buy in [...]

Director's Commentary

Hello, I’m director Eric Wenger, pleased to be here providing commentary for the twentieth-anniversary DVD re-release of Daniel Kaufman’s Bar Mitzvah Video: The Director’s Cut.

Boy, this takes me back! August 1990: I was three months out of SUNY Purchase film school, broke and living in the basement of my aunt’s house in Hoboken, and I suppose the Kaufmans, old family friends, did me a favor. Our troubles really began in that heated preproduction meeting in their kitchenette.

I suggested we shoot on a Northern California mountaintop at the golden hour, for that lush Terrence Malick cinematography. The Kaufmans were difficult, and booked a Forest Hills synagogue on a [...]

Preview: Mike Sacks's Sequel to 'And Here's the Kicker'

I remember picking up Mike Sacks's book And Here's the Kicker, a collection of interviews with some of the greatest comedy writers ever, when it was released back in 2009, and instantly devouring it. I couldn't cram the words into my brain fast enough. While my peers' childhood heroes were pro skateboarders and wrestlers, I instead worshiped comedy writers, and in Sacks's book, here they all were – Letterman head writer Merrill Markoe, original Simpsons scribe George Meyer, and '80s comedy king Harold Ramis – talking at length on the subject of humor writing. I recall this distinct feeling that there had never been anything more perfectly suited [...]

Checking in Halfway Through 'And Here's The Kicker'

Two weeks ago, we named And Here's The Kicker as the first book of the Splitsider Comedy Book Club. The plan is to give everyone a month to obtain and read the book but I wanted to check in as we're halfway through. So far, I've read the wonderful interviews with Buck Henry, Stephen Merchant, Harold Ramis, Dan Mazer, Merrill Markoe, Paul Feig, Bob Odenkirk, Todd Hanson, Marshall Brickman, and Mitch Hurwitz. Though the hope is to have a longer discussion at the end of the book, below are a few questions to be discussed in the comments section of this post to get the ball rolling [...]

Check Out Adult Swim's "Not a Blog"

Did you know that Mike Sacks, author of the much-loved And Here's the Kicker: Conversations with 21 Top Humor Writers on their Craft, is now the editor of Adult Swim's Not a Blog? Well, he is! And he's running fun things like today's Movie Reviewer Trapped in a Wall by The Onion's Dan Mirk. So go check it out why don't you?

Funny or Die Expands Into Books

Funny or Die just announced that it's adding a publishing arm to its operations, planning to work with authors to get their original humor writing published. Their first release will be "an e-book that will satirize the world of celebrity," written by Mike Sacks and the rest of the Pleasure Syndicate, the group of comedy writers responsible for last year's Our Bodies, Our Junk. Sounds promising! It'll be interesting to see how Funny or Die turns its stable of video writers and available celebrities into a series of comedy books.

Where Have All the Humorists Gone?, Part 2: Conversations with Modern Comedy Writers

Be sure to check out Part 1 of Where Have All the Humorists Gone?, Robert Benchley, S.J. Perelman and the Decline of Modern Humor Writing.

Even established comedy writers condescend to dabbling in print, to great effect –- Allison Silverman’s (The Colbert Report) “Et Tu, Brooklyn?” being a recent favorite. That’s not the only example — in his review of Elliot Allagash, Seth Meyers reveals that Simon Rich was hired at Saturday Night Live “because of his amazing short fiction.” Before Amy Ozols ever wrote “Let Us Play With Your Look” for Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, she wrote “A Mass Email” and “Looking Your Best” for The [...]

Sequel to Mike Sacks' 'And Here's the Kicker' Officially Coming to Viking/Penguin in 2014

Good news, fans of incredibly in-depth interviews with comedy writers! Mike Sacks, author of And Here's the Kicker, has officially sold the sequel to that book to Viking/Penguin. He tells me that it should clock in at around 400 pages and have a lot of "surprises." He's already working on it, aiming to have it done next year with the release scheduled for 2014. That's a long way off, but hey, good things take time to come together.

Mike Sacks Is Working on a Sequel to 'And Here's the Kicker'

Mike Sacks, the author of the must-read book of interviews with comedy writers And Here's the Kicker (and humor book Your Wildest Dreams Within Reason) has begun work on a sequel, one that'll have him talking to more big names from the world of comedy writing. He tells me that "there were quite a few writers I couldn't reach the first go-round. I hope to be able to connect with them for this version. Looking for a book editor and publisher who enjoyed and is familiar with the first book, and would know how to handle the second." Get on it, publishers.

If you haven't read [...]

Vanity Fair's Mike Sacks Is Launching a Digital Humor Book Imprint

Vanity Fair editor Mike Sacks, who wrote both And Here's the Kicker: Conversations with 21 Top Humor Writers on their Craft and Your Wildest Dreams, Within Reason, is set to launch a new digital humor book imprint with a couple of major, to-be-named booksellers. He'll be personally editing and selecting the titles released, and the selection will include both fiction and non-fiction. The imprint, called Bulldog Front, will release 10 books a year or so at about 25,000 words a piece or less, and that'll include new works and previously out-of-print comedy books, original humor writing as well as interviews, advice, and things of that nature.


Your Wildest Dreams, Within Reason: The Intersection of Fantasy and Harsh Reality

“Like blurbs, an author’s choice of title is very important… Take Gravity’s Rainbow. That is a terrific title. Why? Because it tells you what the book is about.”

Those words, written by aspiring author Rhon Penny (silent h) in an audacious solicitation letter to novelist Thomas Pynchon, are obviously not true. But coming from Penny, a man who insinuates himself into the lives and careers of authors to whom he considers himself an equal, the statement is typical. Rhon is one of the many blithely delusional protagonists in Mike Sacks’ new humor collection, Your Wildest Dreams Within Reason, out today from Tin House Books. So much so that [...]