Viv Groskop - I Laughed, I Cried - Orion Publishing Group

Time remaining

  • -- days
  • -- hours
  • -- minutes
  • -- seconds
Other Formats
  • E-Book £P.O.R.
    More information
    • ISBN:9781409127864
    • Publication date:27 Jun 2013

I Laughed, I Cried

How One Woman Took on Stand-Up and (Almost) Ruined Her Life

By Viv Groskop

  • Paperback
  • £11.99

Stand-up meets mid-life crisis in this memoir from journalist-turned-comedian Viv Groskop.

Stand-up meets mid-life crisis in this memoir from journalist-turned-comedian Viv Groskop.

When is it too late to become the person you were meant to be? Viv Groskop is fed up, recession-scarred and pushing 40. She always wanted to be a stand-up comedian. But surely that's not advisable if you have three children, a mortgage and a husband who hates stand-up comedy?

With no time to waste, she attempts the mother of all comedy marathons - 100 gigs in 100 nights. She laughs. Sometimes at her own jokes. Occasionally the audience laughs too. Often they don't. And she cries. Tears of joy, of misery and of profound self-loathing.

Along the way she is heckled, flattered, hated, hit on and told that she is 'reasonably funny - but you don't really have any material, do you, love?' So is this the start of an exciting new life? Or a delusional experiment doomed to failure?

This is an alarmingly specific and reckless experiment with a reassuringly universal and inspiring message. You CAN do what you want to do even if it's completely terrifying. You CAN try something new without giving up the day job. And you CAN go after what you really want in life without destroying everything around you. Well, not absolutely everything.

("Viv is brilliant. But I still quite like Billy Connolly." -- Jo Brand)

Biographical Notes

Viv Groskop is a journalist, broadcaster and stand-up comedian. She has written for publications such as the GUARDIAN, THE TIMES, the MAIL ON SUNDAY, GRAZIA and VOGUE and has twice been short-listed for PPA COLUMNIST OF THE YEAR (Periodical Publishers' Association). She appears frequently on TV's SKY NEWS as well as on BBC Radio 4's FRONT ROW and WOMAN'S HOUR and is a regular panellist on ANY QUESTIONS?

Viv first performed with Stephen Fry in a Footlights show in Cambridge at the age of 18. She then did nothing on stage for 20 years. After several false starts and a lucky break hosting Jo Brand's book tour, she started doing stand-up properly in 2011. As a comedian she is described as 'charmingly left-field with an oddball sense of humour.' Which doesn't sound entirely complimentary, but never mind.

@VivGroskop

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9781409127840
  • Publication date: 27 Jun 2013
  • Page count: 288
  • Imprint: Orion
Viv Groskop has paid her dues so you don't have to. The story of her whirlwind comedy apprenticeship is as funny as it is inspiring, and may also give you nightmares. — Tim Dowling
Absolutely hilarious — Jennifer Saunders
Brilliant. — Jo Brand
Viv Groskop is crazy, clever, brave and kind. But mostly she's crazy. A real insight into a secret world. I laughed, I cried, I dry-retched at her sheer balls. — Caroline Quentin
The working mum's version of Eddie Izzard's 50 marathons in 50 days. Hilarious. — Sally Phillips
An amazing book about stand-up that's also about love, determination and pursuing your dreams. — Lucy Porter
This is exactly what it's like starting in comedy. Viv Groskop completely captures the rare highs and frequent plummeting lows. Warm, life-affirming and a hugely funny read. — Jo Caulfield
Viv is the patron saint of anyone bonkers enough to do something they're shit scared of. — Sharon Horgan
Viv Groskop tackles her mission with wit, honesty and a devotion that borders on total insanity. — Mark Watson
A seize-the-day memoir to inspire anyone with a long-held dream. — GOOD HOUSEKEEPING
Enjoyable mid-life crisis memoir from a woman of many talents. — THE BOOKSELLER
It does what it says on the cover. — HUEY MORGAN, BBC Radio 6 Music
She's flirted with, heckled at, hated and applauded in pubs and dingy clubs across the country, all the time pining for her husband and children and overdosing on Diet Coke. Groskop's account of the bewildering, triumphant and messy adventure is like whacking your funny bone: it makes you laugh and wince. — MARIE CLAIRE
A classic of the male midlife crisis genre but for one twist: she's a woman. A mother of three small children, she is constantly torn between defiantly chasing the dream and worrying that it will wreck her marriage. Ostensibly a book about comedy, really it's about female ambition and the anxious ambivalence surrounding it: about the domestic price paid for success, or even for trying and failing, and whether it's still more acceptable for a man than a woman to pay it. — Gaby Hinsliff, The Times
An emotionally turbulent read, littered with moments of unbearable anxiety juxtaposed with massive highs. Rarely has the struggle of the newbie comedian been so perfectly captured. Heart-warming, hilarious, uplifting and a joy to read — GQ.com

Stand-up may be enjoying a boom in the UK at present, but still only a small proportion of comics are female. Of that number, few are mothers, and of those, pretty much none started off doing stand-up when they already had three small children at home. Except for Viv Groskop.

[Her] attempt to combine stand-up with a stable home life makes for a breathless read.

— THE OBSERVER
Sometimes comedians can be the worst of companions: boorish, self-obsessed and oddly humourless. However, Groskop keeps her sense of the ridiculous firmly intact throughout. A gruelling and frankly psychotic experiment. [...]. She documents each gig with great honesty. We follow open-mouthed as Groskop chases the comedy dragon at the expense of all else. — MAIL ON SUNDAY
Jack Whitehall among others, gave her the good advice to learn from long-term experience, not in a frantic rush. But the rush was what Viv wanted. Smell not only the greasepaint but the sweat... Heroic. — THE TIMES
Groskop is clearly some kind of superwoman. Her devotion to the quest and energy levels are astonishing. It could make a great movie. Kristen Wiig in the lead role, naturally. A kind of Fever Pitch for the world of funny. — Bruce Dessau, editor of comedy website BEYOND THE JOKE
Insightful nuggets on the peculiar existence of comics, presented here in all their neurotic, competitive glory [...]. There are some engaging snapshots from her childhood [...]. I Laughed, I Cried is essentially a mid-life crisis played out over 22 chapters. It is also about finding out what you're capable of at a time when your days revolve around school runs, daily deadlines, and uneventful evenings in front of the telly. — INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY
Brave, yes. Crazy, almost definitely. But underneath all the jokes and bad nights, I Laughed, I Cried is the honest version of what pursuing a dream really feels like. — RED MAGAZINE ONLINE
An inspiring look at following your dream — Candis
A heart-warming entreaty for us to take life by the horns and leap over it. — MSLEXIA
Viv Groskop's searing memoir charts the highs and many lows of her showbiz career to date, and is a tribute to following your dreams - even when they threaten to become a nightmare. — BELFAST TELEGRAPH
100 gigs in 100 days...Groskop is terrific on the strain it puts on her family, and provides wonderful summaries of each performance. — THE INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY
Brilliant. — Jo Brand
Viv Groskop is crazy, clever, brave and kind. But mostly she's crazy. A real insight into a secret world. I laughed, I cried, I dry-retched at her sheer balls. — Caroline Quentin
The working mum's version of Eddie Izzard's 50 marathons in 50 days. Hilarious. — Sally Phillips
An amazing book about stand-up that's also about love, determination and pursuing your dreams. — Lucy Porter
This is exactly what it's like starting in comedy. Viv Groskop completely captures the rare highs and frequent plummeting lows. Warm, life-affirming and a hugely funny read. — Jo Caulfield
Viv is the patron saint of anyone bonkers enough to do something they're shit scared of. — Sharon Horgan
Viv Groskop tackles her mission with wit, honesty and a devotion that borders on total insanity. — Mark Watson
A seize-the-day memoir to inspire anyone with a long-held dream. — GOOD HOUSEKEEPING
Enjoyable mid-life crisis memoir from a woman of many talents. — THE BOOKSELLER
It does what it says on the cover. — Huey Morgan, BBC Radio 6 Music
She's flirted with, heckled at, hated and applauded in pubs and dingy clubs across the country, all the time pining for her husband and children and overdosing on Diet Coke. Groskop's account of the bewildering, triumphant and messy adventure is like whacking your funny bone: it makes you laugh and wince. — MARIE CLAIRE
A classic of the male midlife crisis genre but for one twist: she's a woman. A mother of three small children, she is constantly torn between defiantly chasing the dream and worrying that it will wreck her marriage. Ostensibly a book about comedy, really it's about female ambition and the anxious ambivalence surrounding it: about the domestic price paid for success, or even for trying and failing, and whether it's still more acceptable for a man than a woman to pay it. — Gaby Hinsliff, THE TIMES
An emotionally turbulent read, littered with moments of unbearable anxiety juxtaposed with massive highs. Rarely has the struggle of the newbie comedian been so perfectly captured. Heart-warming, hilarious, uplifting and a joy to read — GQ.com

Stand-up may be enjoying a boom in the UK at present, but still only a small proportion of comics are female. Of that number, few are mothers, and of those, pretty much none started off doing stand-up when they already had three small children at home. Except for Viv Groskop.

[Her] attempt to combine stand-up with a stable home life makes for a breathless read.

— THE OBSERVER
Sometimes comedians can be the worst of companions: boorish, self-obsessed and oddly humourless. However, Groskop keeps her sense of the ridiculous firmly intact throughout. A gruelling and frankly psychotic experiment. [...]. She documents each gig with great honesty. We follow open-mouthed as Groskop chases the comedy dragon at the expense of all else. — MAIL ON SUNDAY
Jack Whitehall among others, gave her the good advice to learn from long-term experience, not in a frantic rush. But the rush was what Viv wanted. Smell not only the greasepaint but the sweat... Heroic. — THE TIMES
Groskop is clearly some kind of superwoman. Her devotion to the quest and energy levels are astonishing. It could make a great movie. Kristen Wiig in the lead role, naturally. A kind of Fever Pitch for the world of funny. — Bruce Dessau, editor of comedy website BEYOND THE JOKE
Insightful nuggets on the peculiar existence of comics, presented here in all their neurotic, competitive glory [...]. There are some engaging snapshots from her childhood [...]. I Laughed, I Cried is essentially a mid-life crisis played out over 22 chapters. It is also about finding out what you're capable of at a time when your days revolve around school runs, daily deadlines, and uneventful evenings in front of the telly. — INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY
Brave, yes. Crazy, almost definitely. But underneath all the jokes and bad nights, I Laughed, I Cried is the honest version of what pursuing a dream really feels like. — RED MAGAZINE ONLINE
An inspiring look at following your dream — CANDIS
A heart-warming entreaty for us to take life by the horns and leap over it. — MSLEXIA
Viv Groskop's searing memoir charts the highs and many lows of her showbiz career to date, and is a tribute to following your dreams - even when they threaten to become a nightmare. — BELFAST TELEGRAPH
100 gigs in 100 days...Groskop is terrific on the strain it puts on her family, and provides wonderful summaries of each performance. — THE INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAY