Monday, March 26, 2012


April Fool's Day is the kind of holiday that I don't remember exists until it is the morning of April Fool's Day.  And even upon waking, it usually takes someone evil, like a brother, who puts potato chips at the foot of my bed to remind me(all in the name of humor, of course).

Or a boyfriend who pretends he has to move; "I'm moving to California" was his great joke, and me -- so relieved to hear what I think is news -- said,"Oh, okay."

In my experience, April Fool's humor can foster the worst kind of laughter, where one person comes out the victor and the other person is not laughing at all.  It often results in re-established boundaries and permanent damage (oil stains and unexpected break-ups), and the punchline (April Fool's!) offers little relief.

So. I'm calling upon you writer folks to make it a much more amusing day.

THE CONTEST:  NO-PUNCHLINE PUNCHLINE.  In 100 words or less, write something that amuses.   It's as simple as that.

THE JUDGE:  Michael Showalter


He was a founding member of the sketch comedy troupe, The State, which ran for three seasons on MTV. Michael is also a member of the comedy trio Stella, and, along with Michael Ian Black and David Wain, starred in its eponymous Comedy Central series. Both Stella’s full series and national tour are available on DVD. 

Showalter co-wrote, co-produced and starred in the cult comedy “Wet Hot American Summer.” He directed, wrote and starred in the IFC Films romantic comedy, “The Baxter” co-starring Michelle Williams, Elizabeth Banks and Justin Theroux. He has toured the country performing stand-up comedy and his stand-up comedy record, “Sandwiches & Cats” was released in November of 2007 on the JDub Records label. Michael and longtime collaborator Michael Black co-wrote, co-directed, and co-starred in a well-acclaimed series for Comedy Central, “Michael and Michael Have Issues,” newly available on DVD. Showalter also created a popular web interview series on called “The Michael Showalter Showalter.”

Showalter teaches screenwriting at NYU Graduate Film School. His comedic memoir, “Mr. Funny Pants,” hits shelves February 24, 2011 and is published by Hachette Book Group.  

(Bio via


One free copy of Showalter's memoir, Mr. Funny Pants.

Other prizes TBA. 


No entry fee. To be eligible:

Subscribe to this blog Other Things (on the right margin) so you can be updated on future contests and literary events in NYC.

Email your entry (no attachments please) to by Monday April 2, 7pm EST.  Please put NO-PUNCHLINE PUNCHLINE in the subject line, and include your name somewhere in the email, though all submissions will be read blind by Michael Showalter.

Winners will be announced here on this blog shortly thereafter.


  1. I just finished The Adults, finished reading it, I guess I should say, because I don't expect to be finished with the book and its characters for quite some time. I thought it was wonderfully written and imagined and hilarious and terrifically sad. Lorrie Moore came to mind, and Amy Hempel, and The Goon Squad chick. And so the name Alison Espach will be added to my list of favorites. The Adults was one of the best novels I've read this past year. Congratulations.

  2. I am DYING to know who won this.

  3. Thanks RJ! My response is way delayed, but I very much appreciate the kind words.

  4. Jenna, results will be out next week. Stay tuned xo


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