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My Seinfeld Year (Kindle Single) [Kindle Edition]

Fred Stoller
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (346 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $1.99
 
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Book Description

You'd know Fred Stoller if you saw him. He has appeared on practically every great sitcom you've ever seen - Everybody Loves Raymond, Friends, and Murphy Brown just to name a few. But he has never been a regular on a series, always the guest star. He longs to find a showbiz home. Instead, he is a television foster child, shuttling from show to show in the vain hope that one will finally agree to keep him. "My Seinfeld Year" tells the hysterical and bittersweet story of what happened when Stoller finally got a shot at the showbiz stability he'd always dreamed of -- as a staff writer on one of the biggest television shows in history.


Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Fred Stoller has been a working actor for decades, a character actor who has landed choice roles in television and movies alike. He's been punched out in Dumb and Dumber, and he's acted in dozens of sitcoms through the years, mastering the role of "jerky annoying shnook." In 1994, he had a sense that his career as an actor was moving in the right direction when an almost unimaginable opportunity came his way: he was asked to write for the hit show Seinfeld. How it came about is almost Seinfeldian in its own right--a surprise party led to a chance encounter with Larry David (whom he kind of knew from New York stand-up), which led to an invitation to do a spec script, which, quite suddenly, led to a giant office and a staff writer position on Seinfeld. Thus we are given entrée into one of the most popular shows in the history of television. We meet the real-life cast and creators, including Larry and Jerry (they do not disappoint). We watch Stoller rise and fall and climb back up again (returning to act in a Seinfeld episode). And we get a true insider's look into what it takes to survive, and last, in Hollywood--even if you're just good at playing an annoying shnook. --Chris Schluep

From AudioFile


Product Details

  • File Size: 127 KB
  • Print Length: 60 pages
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006Z499M0
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #12,186 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
82 of 87 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Great Look Inside "Seinfeld" January 19, 2012
By Pensky
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
As a huge "Seinfeld" fan, I thought this short read was a great inside look at the show. The history and actual goings-on of the show are usually dressed up and presented in the best light. The DVDs, commentaries, interviews, etc all portray the show as a wildly happy place, where everyone got along and made TV history. The only slight hiccup that sometimes pops up will be when someone, usually a cast member, will off handedly refer to Michael Richards as being "quirky" or "different", which by now I take to mean that he was a real a-hole.

Stollers essay is funny, sad and perfectly introspective. It helps if you recognize him from the episode he guest starred, it makes understanding his personality a little easier. But, needless to say, Stoller didn't have the easiest time as a staff writer. He didn't mesh well with the other writers, Seinfeld and Larry David were too busy running the show to help guide him, and one jealous and insecure writer, referred to as "Perry", actively tried to sabotage his experience.

In short, this is a great read for any Seinfeld fan. The inside look into the show is seemingly unbiased, reflective and realistic. It's totally different from the way the DVDs portrayed the show and the interpersonal relationships, but it isn't tabloid-y or seems like it was made for a quick buck. It certainly feels real and raw, and I think that is a rarity for any of the products that came out of the show. I ended up feeling bad for Fred, and I hope things stay productive for him. This essay was really quite touching.

As a last question, I really want to know who "Perry" is. Stoller wrote for Season 6, and he names a lot of people, eliminating them. Berg, Schaffer, Robin and Kavet would have been the "college kid" writers, so that leaves Bruce Kirschbaum, Bill Masters and Bob Shaw as potential candidates. Personally, I'd probably lean towards Kirschbaum. Unless "Perry" never finished the script he was working on all year...
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28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Now, THAT counts as a meal. January 25, 2012
By Scott C
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Super lean and all-funny prose makes Mr. Stoller's account of life as an actor/writer a total kick in the pants and a real pleasure to read. There is literally no "filler" in this book, no sections that lag. It seems to be constructed of 'only the good parts' -in a good way. The Sienfeld stuff really satisfies and is bookmarked by some of his experiences as a working actor told in a funny and very human way. Highly recommended.
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Refreshing, Touching and Real January 21, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Fred's account of his time as a writer on Seinfeld not only covers the emotions, struggles and triumphs of that writing position but shows glimpses of his family, his childhood and his personality. I wish this were, not just a Kindle Single, but an entire autobiography from birth to the present because it is refreshingly honest and impossible to stop reading. I can sense that there are countless stories and characters from Fred's life that are lurking just out or reach, beyond this downloadable snippet, that I'd gladly follow to embrace the honest laughs and the empathetic sighs. Some of the details and moments that Fred decribe are wonderfully woven with complicated emotions in one short narrative, one instance and sometimes even one sentence. That's the definition of great writing.
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Maybe he's just cracking another joke but Fred Stoller says that rather than tell her friends her son is a comedian, his mother says he's retarded.

She is the same person who asks him how he is going to make people laugh when he always seems to be so depressed. And insecure, so unsure of himself and so shy that at 17 he once practically needed to ask permission to enter a supermarket, he says.

That's the self-deprecating tone of this memoir, a tale more wistful and questioning than funny. Stoller is the clown wearing a sad face.

While waiting in the wings of the Disney teen show "Wizards of Waverly Place," on which he has the small part of a doorman, Stoller sums up his career trajectory, "Wow, here I am, the 52-year old guest star wearing a Pee Wee Herman bellhop uniform and a monkey cap."

He's been a trouper, selling laughs playing the role of a schnook in off-kilter parts for decades. "When people stop me at the mall and demand to know where they know me from, usually it's as Elaine's annoying date on `Seinfeld', Ray's mopey cousin on `Everybody Loves Raymond,' or the jerky waiter on `Friends.'"

And then there's 1994, the year he spent around the table as a writer on "Seinfeld," sitting in the same room with the other sitcom writers, producer Larry David and Jerry, the man, himself. One of the first things Jerry commented by way of greeting was "nice belt." Stoller never wore the belt to work again. The next day and for the rest of the week, Jerry asked, "Where's the belt?"

Most of Stoller's story is a behind-the-scenes look at "Seinfeld." It's a fascinating peek behind the curtain and at the creative process. Each show started with an idea, a pitch.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun read January 29, 2012
By 7K64
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I've been a big Fred Stoller fan since his stand up days. Anytime I've seen him on TV I've thought, "I wanna see more of this guy... why don't they USE him more!" He's brilliant at what he does & I don't even think he has to try that hard. I loved the book... some truly funny anecdotes and very interesting reading about the stresses involved in being a TV writer. The inside revelations on the inner workings of Seinfeld were great. The only thing missing from this book: I would have loved to have come away with a little more insight into how Fred became Fred... the best parts of the book for me were when he talked about his mother and how he grew up. I also thought the book ended a little too abruptly. Still, a VERY fun read and anyone should get a kick out of the book, not just Seinfeld or Stoller fans. Thanks, Fred, for all the entertainment over the years.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Interesting commentary on a great TV series.
Published 18 hours ago by R. Simpson
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting insight into the life of a guest star and sitcom writer.
Told the story of the inner workings of how Seinfeld episodes were developed and prepared for showing.
Published 8 days ago by G. Wagner
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it!
As a Fred Stoller fan and a Seinfeld fan, this was a great read. Very honest and personal, well done.
Published 24 days ago by Jennifer Sofo
5.0 out of 5 stars A good two hour read.
An entertaining quick read.
Published 25 days ago by A. Norine
5.0 out of 5 stars Witty, deadpan story of a memorable year in the life of an average guy
I really enjoyed this book. Fred Stoller has a dry, deadpan wit that's very appealing. He is also charmingly devoid of the Hollywood self-importance that affects so many actors... Read more
Published 28 days ago by R. Asphaug
5.0 out of 5 stars This is How It's Done!
What a ride this Kindle Single took me on. I am so happy Fred shared this experience so honestly with us. Thank you, Fred Stoller, I truly love this story.
Published 29 days ago by Mary D.
5.0 out of 5 stars I know that guy
Stoller has written an insightful memoir about the anxiety of the professional actor who seeks a stable career in the Rocky world of show business. Read more
Published 1 month ago by E. C. Norton
3.0 out of 5 stars Could have used a rewrite
There are some interesting anecdotes in this behind-the-scenes look at Seinfeld and it's certainly worth the $2 Kindle price. Read more
Published 1 month ago by J. Allison
5.0 out of 5 stars At least you have something to do....
Very enjoyable read. Stoller has a great writing style, and his non-sequitur humor is genius. The period focused on the Seinfeld years were great. Read more
Published 1 month ago by pray4par
4.0 out of 5 stars It was nice to go behind the Seinfeld scenes but this guy ...
It was nice to go behind the Seinfeld scenes but this guy is a bit of a nerd. I can unserstand why he didn't go on to do more work for Seinfeld..
Published 1 month ago by nadine markova
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My Seinfeld Year - will anyone loan this to me?
yes i can loan it for free if you tell me how to loan a book
mal
Feb 15, 2012 by Malodonnell |  See all 4 posts
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