Ep 11 - Aptaker and Berger

Isaac Aptaker and Elizabeth Berger have written most recently on “The Neighbors,” but also on “Friends with Benefits,” “I Want My Pants Back” and “Zack Stone is Gonna Be Famous." They are young and writing partners and the LA WEEKLY called them wunderkinds, but that was in 2012.  Now they are pretty much regular age, but like, accomplished.

We talk about learning how to speak up and strike out, writing for specific actors who are may or may not be movie stars, and how one of the best things about a writing partner is having someone bitch to after weird meetings. There are other great things too, but that one keeps you sane.  They also rave about everyone they’ve ever worked with.  It would be annoying if it wasn’t so genuine.

Listen here!

Ep 10 - David Iserson

David Iserson has written for "Saturday Night Live," "United States of Tara," "Up All Night," and "New Girl." He writes films and books too. I know it's sexist to define someone by their partner's job, but his wife is a taxidermist.  It explains a lot.  That, and the fact that he put on Brecht plays at summer camp.

We talk about why he's drawn to writing about adolescence, what happens when comedy writers go dramatic, and how it can be for the best not to write the episodes you're closest to.

Check out the trailer for his YA book "Firecracker" below, and buy the book here.  It has the most Amazon stars!  He tweets here, tumbls here and instagrams here.  You can check out some pictures of his living room full of people and taxidermy here.  

Listen here


Always and forever, logo by Kelly Majewski, and music from the Old Lumps. 


Ep. 9 - Zak Shaikh

Zak Shaikh is a TV and film writer who writes both comedy and drama.  He calls that diverse, but I just call it indecisive.  He wrote on the Starz comedy "Head Case," adapted Stephen Fry's novel "The Liar," sold a drama pilot to Fox Studios and was one of five writers selected for the WGA Feature Access Project.  He is currently writing on the TBS comedy "Sullivan and Son." They were on hiatus because their star got punched in the face by a taxi driver and had to have his jaw wired shut, but they're back now.

We talk about how he moved to LA because USC was the only place that would have him, how bad news takes forever but good news comes right away, and how the funniest episodes often come from the simplest stories.  He also talks a lot about how great his boss is.  Always a good strategy.  

Listen here, watch "Sullivan and Son" when season two premieres on June 13th and DEFINITELY watch Zak's episode on June 27th!  


Ep. 8 - Annabel Oakes

Annabel Oakes was a screenwriter who had a script on the Black List, but prefers being a TV writer who gets paid.  She has sold pilots to networks, written on MTV’s “Awkward,” and “State of Georgia,” starring Raven-Symoné, and she even had a tweet on “Ellen.”  It was this one.  

We start off VERY CONTROVERSIAL but that doesn’t last long.  We talk about being clever as opposed to being funny, how making all the “right” decisions can get in your way, and how great multi-cams can be.  For the record, in case you were wondering, she comes down pro-bat and anti-rape.

She tweets here and you can listen here.  Watch an episode of "Awkward" she wrote below.


Ep. 7 - Pamela Ribon

Pamela Ribon writes TV shows and novels and has been posting on her website pamie.com since before Al Gore invented the internet. She wrote jokes for anime translations.  She recapped when recapping was underground.  She raises money to DONATE BOOKS TO LIBRARIES.

We talk about this stuff, Sassy Magazine, asking for Tom Selleck and getting Harry Hamlin, and being in a twenty person improv troupe.  We also talk a lot about Anne Heche's memoir Call Me Crazy, and now I have to read it.  I never thought my life would come to this, but I'm excited about it. 

She tweets here and gives great advice here.  If you want to donate books to libraries too, go here.  And listen here. 


Ep. 6 - Nick Malis

Nick Malis is the head writer and Executive Produer of Tosh.0. He edited the Harvard Lampoon,  his first job out of college was working for his comedy idol Howard Stern, and he learned about joke structure riding to and from Atlantic City in a limo with Joan Rivers. That's baller. He wrote Reverend Run's "Words of Wisdom," porn under the name Nick Maraschino and had a blog called Cute Things Falling Asleep that blew  up  the internet. Even Wolf Blitzer  was into it.

We talk about all that, writing in other people's voices, how the random things you do can end up finding you the perfect job, and the Canter's Deli fruit cup.  It's the only item on the menu Mr. Canter still makes himself.  He's got a system.

Nick does stand-up around LA and tweets here.  

Watch the Tosh.0 Fat Bottle Ninja Web Redemption below, and listen to the episode here.


Ep. 5 - Luvh Rakhe

Luvh Rakhe is a writer and producer on "New Girl" and "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia."   He did the Hollywood assistant thing,  did the Disney/ABC Writer's Program thing, and then jumped around as a staff writer before landing on "New Girl" and "Sunny."  Yup.  He gets to work on both.  Don't hate.  

We talk our way through his career to date, we talk about getting lucky with who you work for, and maybe we talk a little too much about philosophy, but it all comes back to the shows.  Don't worry.  We talk plenty about the shows. 

WARNING: The last ten minutes of the episode have disappeared due to shoddy techmanship.  You have my deepest apologies.  

Listen (to everything else!) here

Ep. 4 - Jackie Clarke

Jackie Clarke is a writer and performer who works on "Happy Endings," performs at UCB, has appeared on "This American Life" and is a Real Housewife of South Boston.  She plays a character named... Jackie.  It's not a stretch.

We start in the most LA way possible (parking tickets! meetings!) but don't worry. It doesn't last long.  We mostly talk about "Happy Endings" and her "This American Life" feature, and what it's like to translate a piece of your life into radio.  If you haven't listened to THAT yet, now's the time.  It'll only take you one normal-sized car ride. 

She tweets here  and tumbls here.

Watch "The Real Housewives of South Boston" below, and listen to the episode here

Ep. 3 - Heather Flanders

Heather Flanders spent her formative Hollywood years working for a director who makes big-budget comedies, got her break writing raunchy, frat boy comedy and then shifted gears to write Disney XD and Nickelodean comedy.  We talk about all this stuff, punch-up rooms, how a recording studio looks on a Sunday morning after Dr. Dre's been there all night, and poetry.  Well, Heather talks about poetry and I listen. 

Listen here


Ep. 2 - Duncan Birmingham

Duncan Birmingham is a film and TV writer.  His screenplay "Swingles" is in development at Paramount, he's the man behind the blog and book, "Pets Who Want To Kill Themselves" and he's a writer and Executive Producer on the upcoming show, "Maron," with Marc Maron.  He is very obsessed with his dog Snax.  You can find Duncan here, and Snax here.

Listen here

Artwork and music still by Kelly Majewski and the Old Lumps.

Ep. 1 - Zeb Wells

Zeb Wells is a comic book writer AND a comedy writer who has written a ton of issues of Spiderman (and many others), who currently writes for and directs Robot Chicken.  We talk about his start making viral videos before videos went viral, getting burned out on the things you used to love and deciding to be a grown-up. 

Listen here.

Artwork courtesy of Kelly Majewski, and music by the Old Lumps!