How to Succeed in Business Without Really Crying

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Overview

For many years, television comedy was an exclusive all boys’ club—until a brilliant comedian named Carol Leifer came along, blazing a trail for funny women everywhere. From Late Night with David Letterman and Saturday Night Live to Seinfeld, The Ellen Show, and Modern Family, Carol has written for and/or performed on some of the best TV comedies of all time.
 
This hilarious collection of essays charts her extraordinary three-decade ...
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How to Succeed in Business Without Really Crying

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Overview

For many years, television comedy was an exclusive all boys’ club—until a brilliant comedian named Carol Leifer came along, blazing a trail for funny women everywhere. From Late Night with David Letterman and Saturday Night Live to Seinfeld, The Ellen Show, and Modern Family, Carol has written for and/or performed on some of the best TV comedies of all time.
 
This hilarious collection of essays charts her extraordinary three-decade journey through show business, illuminating her many triumphs and some missteps along the way—and offering valuable lessons for women and men in any profession. Part memoir, part guide to life, and all incredibly funny, How to Succeed in Business without Really Crying offers tips and tricks for getting ahead, finding your way, and opening locked doors—even if you have to use a sledgehammer.
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Editorial Reviews

The New York Times Book Review - Peter Keepnews
…an unusual and endearing mix of showbiz memoir and self-help book. It's well worth reading just for the inside stories about breaking into the stand-up world and writing for Seinfeld…and Saturday Night Live…and for Leifer's seemingly counterintuitive views on being a woman in comedy…And happily, although career advice is the essence of the book, the how-to aspect is more than just the medicine that accompanies the spoonfuls of sugar. The advice is delivered with as much humor as the anecdotes.
Publishers Weekly
04/28/2014
Veteran comedy writer Leifer (When You Lie About Your Age, the Terrorists Win) reflects on nearly 40 years working in stand-up and television and offers valuable career advice for young, aspiring readers. Many tips are specific to the entertainment industry, like "get a job, any job, on a television show you love," and show enthusiasm to those in charge; others are more widely applicable such as Leifer's advice for job interviews and list of "crimes against hirability." The author describes her short-lived job as a writer for Saturday Night Live as a missed opportunity. She uses her chilly relationship with Lorne Michaels and his tendency toward favoritism, to illustrate the importance of being a proactive employee in any circumstance. She describes pitching to Jerry Seinfeld and Larry David, where she honed the ability to "mine own life" for ideas that went on to become legendary Seinfeld episodes like "The Rye." While admitting that the business can be sexist, Leifer argues that being a woman in comedy is a "tremendous advantage" and encourages women to "make other women a priority." Accompanying photographs feature Leifer with a host of comedic legends throughout her career including Paul Reiser, Johnny Carson, and Bill Cosby, as well as great candid shots of Seinfeld and David. With such a wealth of experience, readers will find a lot of wise words but for a comedic memoir it is somewhat lacking in humor. B&w photos. (Apr.)
From the Publisher
"An amusing, amiable read. Leifer wants you to love what you do and learn to move on from failures and rejections-and please, always shower before a job interview." —-Kirkus
Kirkus Reviews
2014-02-06
Career and life lessons from the would-be president of the "old girls club." After 40 years of writing, producing and performing comedy, Leifer (When You Lie About Your Age, the Terrorists Win: Reflections on Looking in the Mirror, 2009) offers advice on succeeding in both life and show business. Rather than a career guide written by a suit who connived, hurt others or gleefully conquered them, Leifer's stories of turning failures into successes demonstrate how persistence and optimism—not to mention parents who supported her decision to drop out of college and pursue a career in stand-up comedy—have created opportunities that continued to propel her forward. The author reworks such workplace aphorisms as "Learn from the masters" and "You never get a second chance to make a first impression," into "Respect Your Yodas" and "So I Stole Soda From Aaron Spelling." Throughout the book, Leifer comes across as your "Auntie Carol," the funny one who tells stories about the sweethearts and schmucks she has worked with throughout her career. She presents her early experiences in her stand-up career as a procession of cautionary tales and mortifying blunders, such as when she challenged a heckler in a dive bar to come up on stage if he thought he had better material—unaware that he was in a wheelchair. ("Not exactly the kind of 'rolling in the aisles' that a comedian dreams of.") She follows every story with its moral—a cornball technique, perhaps, but a surprisingly effective one, as is this memoir by a major Hollywood player filled with advice and heartfelt encouragement. An amusing, amiable read. Leifer wants you to love what you do and learn to move on from failures and rejections—and please, always shower before a job interview.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781494531171
  • Publisher: Tantor Media, Inc.
  • Publication date: 4/8/2014
  • Format: CD
  • Edition description: Library - Unabridged CD
  • Product dimensions: 6.70 (w) x 6.40 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Carol Leifer is a four-time Emmy nominee for her writing on such shows as Seinfeld, Modern Family, Saturday Night Live, The Larry Sanders Show, and seven Academy Awards telecasts. She has starred in five of her own comedy specials, which have aired on Showtime, HBO, and Comedy Central. Her previous book was the national best seller When You Lie about Your Age, the Terrorists Win.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 3 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 17, 2014

    How To Succeed In Business Without Really Crying by Carol Leifer

    How To Succeed In Business Without Really Crying by Carol Leifer should really be shelved under Career Planning. Just yesterday a customer asked me where our career books were, and before I brought her to Business, we took a detour to Biography so that I could tell her how freaking awesome this book is for the job hunter as well as the ladder climber.




    The story of Carol's life as a female comedian who never gave up was fascinating and inspiring, and the tales of her interactions with comedy legends were laugh out loud funny. (Excuse me, Carol, but it looks like you dropped a few names...) I read parts of it aloud incoherently to my husband, laughing so hard that all the words came out as "bleerhaHAHArghxchHAHAefh". Hilarious anecdotes aside, the thread that ran through the whole book was about how the way you treat people throughout your career will ultimately decide your success or failure in any business. That, along with hard work and determination, of course.




    I love the fact that she started with the basics of the interview, even specfically reminding the guys to "shower the day of the interview. Not the night before. Not a week before". She then continued through getting the job, handling rejection, keeping the job, et cetera, using stories of things that had either worked or not worked for her, depending on whether or not she had practiced what she was preaching. This was a unique way to give excellent career advice without being a dry, boring business book.




    This is perfect for anyone just starting out in the world of employment, those wanting to advance, or anyone who is taking a fresh look at following a dream career path on which they had given up. If you don't take away at least one career-changing tip from this book, you probably won't be hired for that dream job anyway, but at least you would have had a good chuckle in the process!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 16, 2014

    Not what i was expecting.

    Not a humor book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 16, 2014

    excellent

    A very funny book, but with very good points for people to follow in their work-a-day life. I really liked it.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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