Bossypants- Tina Fey

Since I had to work during the talk, I watched multiple interviews by Tina Fey speaking on her fairly recent book, Bossypants. If anyone hasn’t read it, they should, and preferably on an airplane like I did so you laugh a lot and the person sitting next to you thinks you’re weird. In the “Google talk” and the interview with Gale King, Tina talks a lot about her start in comedy and improvisation. Improvisation was a instrumental part of her comedic talent, as well as writing abilities because she was taught how to think quickly, follow a set of rules, and most importantly, that an idea formed by two people is probably better than an idea thought of alone. This collaborative aspect is important in creating a successful work. In fact, Fey and her editors chose the title of her book, her editors turning down multiple titles before “bossy pants” stuck. Another thing Fey discussed was her love of language at an early age. Her father was a writer for a business newspaper and later a grant writer, and she talks about being a child and being expected to write and to write well. What I found most valuable from the interviews was her advice on comedy in writing and film. Self- deprecation is helpful in comedy, but you should not doubt your work abilities and what you produce. Be confident in what you are saying/doing and don’t ask questions, make statements. This speaks to her confidence as a writer as well as her talent as a comedian.

Here are the links if you would like to watch…

2 thoughts to “Bossypants- Tina Fey”

  1. Madi,

    I loved Tina Fey’s Bossypants. I didn’t realize how many titles her editors turned down before they came with “Bossypants”! It’s interesting to note how often this recurring notion of an “early love of language” for very successful writers. I myself, didn’t develop a love of language until I was an older teenager. I definitely agree that we “need to be confident in what we’re saying.” But, I believe posing questions can sometimes be a good thing – depending upon whether or not they advance your argument. Thanks for sharing the link to the interview – watching it with your analysis painted a full picture of Tina Fey!

  2. I remember when Bossypants came out, and being greatly disturbed by that book cover. Something about the ‘man arms’ just creeped me out. That being said, Tina Fey is really funny and an amazing writer, much of SNL was written by Tina when she was on the show (which I’m sure you know), so she gets props for creating some really funny skits, not to mention the great team that she and Jimmy Fallon made for Weekend Update (soooo much better than Amy Poler + Seth Meyers).

    I found it interesting what she said about collaboration, and I (like many of us) have had bad experience in high school and even college with collaboration, so I often lack the trust aspect necessary to team up. At the same time, I feel like she is working with really vocal people, so it’s not like in school when you’re in a group with a kid who never speaks and you are left wondering if they understand their role or will even do it. So I guess she’s most likely right.

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