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 for my interests as a massive comedy nerd than that book and that there probably never would be again, but I was wrong because I recently got to sneak a peek at Mike Sacks’s upcoming sequel to And Here’s the Kicker, and it’s full of everything that I loved about the first book and more.
Shooting for a June 2014 release via Viking/Penguin, the And Here’s the Kicker sequel will run between 450 to 550 pages and feature around 20 interviews with influential comedy writers that are even longer and more in-depth than the ones in the original book. Plus, Sacks, who’s also a humor writer himself and the author of four books, has compiled tons of extra content like excerpts from lost comedy books and scripts, and short interviews with comedy writers giving specific advice on how to break into TV, movies, online humor publication, books, and every other comedy niche you can think of.
In addition to several excerpts from the book, I got to glance at the full list of names Mike Sacks has interviewed, and it’s an even more esteemed and eclectic group than the last one. The list features more than a few somewhat reclusive writers. Sacks allowed me to publish this partial list of interview subjects from the new book, but just know that there are about a dozen big names not included here and that he’s still looking for the last two interview subjects if any of the big-name comedy writers who read this blog are interested.
Henry BeardGlen and Les CharlesRoz ChastDaniel ClowesBruce Jay FriedmanDan GutermanTerry JonesCarol KolbSam LipsyteAdam McKayDon NovelloAdam ResnickGeorge SaundersTom ScharplingMike Schur