This is the sort of thing I generally try not to include: an interview by a huge publication with a cult hero that is then discussed all week on Twitter leaving very little else to say. Here, the hero is legendary The Simpsons and Frank Burly writer John Swartzwelder, who famously has never given an interview. Until now.
But include it I will, because he’s such a towering figure and, I think, the best comedy writer of the past 30 years or so; it’s great to see him get this level of attention. It’s as much about writing and process as it is his career.
Even in trivial reminiscences, I wouldn’t mistake this tone for anyone else:
I never knew any comedy writers when I was growing up, or heard of anybody around town trying to make a living that way. So it was an unusual choice for me to make. And because it was unusual, it was hard to know where to start. When I told people I didn’t want to carry cement for a living, I wanted to write comedy and be a national treasure instead, I got some odd looks. Some people suspected I might be stupid. Others were sure of it.
If you’ve not yet read this, you should.