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Self-Inflicted Wounds: Heartwarming Tales of Epic Humiliation Hardcover – July 9, 2013

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: It Books (July 9, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062223771
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062223777
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.3 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (104 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #41,138 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


“In her new book, Aisha Tyler embarrasses and humiliates herself for 231 pages—to our extreme reading pleasure.” (Entertainment Weekly)

“Tyler’s work is refreshing not just for its unabashed candor, but also for its humorous insights into the human capacity for screwing up and bouncing back. Things ‘will go wrong…mind-blowingly wrong.’ But under no circumstances should it stop someone from pursuing their dreams. Smart, sassy and surprisingly wise.” (Kirkus Reviews)

“Aisha Tyler is one of the smartest, funniest women I’ve had the good fortune of meeting. She makes me laugh every time I see her—and this is coming from the guy who thinks women aren’t funny.” (Adam Carolla, comedian, host of The Adam Carolla Show, and New York Times bestselling author of In Fifty Years We'll All Be Chicks)

“A beautifully tortured and sick-with-self-consciousness manifesto of regret. I’m equal parts proud and embarrassed for Aisha Tyler, which doesn’t get in the way of my loving her, as you will when you read Self-Inflicted Wounds.” (Margaret Cho, comedian, actress, and nationally bestselling author of I'm the One That I Want)

“Self-inflicted wounds are the nastiest, most painful, and most likely to fester. Also the funniest. Aisha brings back every awful, suicidally stupid, shameful, and all-too-familiar episode of a life well lived. Reading this book made me feel a lot better about myself. Prepare to be horrified—and entertained.” (Anthony Bourdain, chef, host of Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown, and New York Times bestselling author of Kitchen Confidential)

“One of the most kick-ass women I know, Aisha Tyler hilariously rips herself open and shows you her guts. On the schadenfreude scale, Self-Inflicted Wounds is a ten.” (Felicia Day, actress, writer, and producer of The Guild)

“Good God. The Amazon can write. And write well. We are doomed.” (Patton Oswalt, comedian, actor, and New York Times bestselling author of Zombie Spaceship Wasteland)

“For once, Patton is correct. Aisha Tyler is one funny son of a bitch.” (Dave Eggers, Pulitzer Prize-nominated author of New York Times #1 bestseller A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius, What Is the What, Zeitoun, and A Hologram for the King and founder of McSweeney's)

“The first time I met Aisha I felt we could have been sisters. Tall, beautiful, African-American, comedienne…after reading Self-Inflicted Wounds I found we had more in common: setting the house on fire, peeing ourselves in public, and an endless list of people we’ve offended in some way.” (Sharon Osbourne, author, rock manager, and cohost of The Talk)

“If you’re the type of sicko who enjoys a hilariously talented person debasing herself for your amusement, then Self-Inflicted Wounds is the book for you.” (Andy Richter, comedian, actor, writer, announcer and man-Friday on Conan)

“Aisha Tyler’s book, Self-Inflicted Wounds, is an uplifting, hilarious trek through her life of insults, agonies and failures. Each story is not only painfully funny, but it’s also thoughtful and stunningly candid. I really do love this book.” (Jay Chandrasekhar, director of Super Troopers, Beerfest, and Babymakers)

“We all do stupid stuff, sometimes on purpose. But rarely do we ever talk about it, let alone publish an in-depth retelling-leave it to Aisha Tyler to help us all feel a little less dumb and a little more connected.” (Seth Green, comedian, actor, creator/writer/director of Robot Chicken)

“Aisha is living proof that for nerdy outsiders things really do get better. But, in her case, before they got better, they got a whole lot worse. It’s impossible not to laugh while reading Self-Inflicted Wounds. It’s also impossible not to worry about Aisha’s mental health.” (Touré, author, critic, host of The Cycle on MSNBC)

“What Aisha says about embracing your fear and using mistakes to forge character is beautiful. What she says about Oprah is unforgivable.” (Baratunde Thurston, New York Times bestselling author of How To Be Black, and CEO/Co-Founder, Cultivated WitBaratunde Thurston, New York Times bestselling author of How To Be Black, and CEO/Co-Founder, Cultivated Wit)

“Aisha Tyler’s incredibly vivid stories of going for big air only to land flat on her face (or possibly a rusty spike) are a unique combination of cringe-worthy and inspiring. That she shares these stories makes me love her all the more.” (Bill Burr, comedian, actor, and host of The Monday Morning Podcast)

“Self-inflicted wounds. We all have them, but no one exploits their own pain for the funny like Aisha Tyler.” (Wayne Brady, comedian, actor, star of Whose Line Is It Anyway? and host of Let's Make a Deal)

“Aisha Tyler’s brain moves faster than a shock spell from the hands of a lightning mage. She is hilarious, hyper-articulate, and will kick your ass in Call of Duty. She is the life of the LAN party.” (Chris Hardwick, comedian and host of The Talking Dead and The Nerdist)

From the Back Cover

self-inflicted wound (n): a spectacularly humiliating, and often hilarious, incident entirely of one's own making.
see also: you did it to yourself.

Have you ever made a decision you instantly regretted? Humiliated yourself in a room of your peers, or shamed yourself in front of your massive crush? Ever blown a job interview, frozen during a presentation, acted like a total idiot on a date? Ever said the wrong thing at the wrong time, unable to keep your tongue from flapping out the stupidest words you've ever said in your life, ever? If you are a human being, the answer, of course, is yes. Take heart. You're not alone. This is known as the Self-Inflicted Wound, and every one of us bears a scar. Or several.

Here, Aisha Tyler, comedian, actress, cohost of CBS's The Talk, star of Archer, and creator of the top-ranked podcast Girl on Guy, serves up a spectacular collection of her own self-inflicted wounds. From almost setting herself on fire, to vomiting on a boy she liked, to getting drunk and sleeping through the SATs, to going into crushing debt to pay for college and then throwing away her degree to become a comedian, Aisha's life has been a series of spectacularly epic fails. And she's got the scars to prove it. Literally.

Through it all, Aisha's triumphs haven't come in spite of the failures, but because of them. Because with every failure comes a lesson learned, a strength revealed, a fear overcome, or an adventure braved. Self-Inflicted Wounds isn't just about surviving failure. It's about embracing failure—pursuing it, even—on the winding path to success. And after you've failed a time or three, hopefully you'll have learned something. Or at the very least have a really killer story. Because to err is human, but to fail epically is hilarious.

More About the Author

Actress, author and stand-up comedian Aisha Tyler first made history as the first female and African-American host of E! Entertainment's cult hit "Talk Soup." She went on to break ground again as the first African-American to have a long-running arc on NBC's juggernaut Friends, as well as roles on Ghost Whisperer, CSI, 24, The Boondocks, Nip/Tuck, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Reno 911, and many more.

Tyler is currently co-host on CBS' hit daytime talker The Talk, which recently launched its third season to record ratings. She also voices sexy super-spy Lana Kane on FX's smash animated series Archer, entering its fourth season in January 2013. Her podcast, Girl on Guy with Aisha Tyler, has seen more than four million downloads, was named Best New Podcast for 2011 by iTunes, and lands regularly in the comedy podcast top ten. Tyler performs comedy at sold-out shows nationwide, and has contributed to Glamour, Oprah, and Entertainment Weekly magazines. She lives in Los Angeles.

Related Media

Customer Reviews

Well written and very funny.
Seriously, like book has more footnotes than even Stephen Colbert's stuff but to poor effect.
The Irken Elite
I enjoyed reading her book, it was laugh out loud funny.
J D Jackson

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Kelly Sessions on July 9, 2013
Format: Audible Audio Edition
Aisha Tyler is many things that I am not: tall, childless, funny, confident, fearless. But she and I also share some qualities, if you can call them that. We're both neurotic, both nerds, both prone to going off on tangents while telling a story. But let's be honest: it doesn't matter if an author and I have absolutely nothing in common, really, as long as she makes her writing work. And Aisha Tyler does just that.

Self-Inflicted Wounds is a memoir of sorts in which Tyler recounts all the times in her life, beginning at the ripe old age of five, when she (inadvertently) screwed herself over. From setting the kitchen on fire to boy problems to broken bones, she's had a remarkable amount of incidents where she can blame no one but herself. Footnotes are liberally sprinkled throughout the cringe-inducing tales. This is an excellent format for the asides that a stand-up comedian can't help but make when telling a story.

Although she often drops a mini-lesson at the end of a chapter, the best part about these episodes is that they're funny. In fact, they're so funny that I tried my son's patience more than once. See, I'm still nursing him once or twice a day. And when you're reading a funny book and don't want your nipple bitten off, you try not to laugh. But as any private-school girl knows, withholding laughter just means lots of snorting and jerky shoulders. So my kid's head is bouncing on my arm, and I'm trying to stop laughing, which is only making me laugh harder, and then I have to stop reading and use the advice from my scuba certification course: just focus on your breathing. She's that funny.

To be honest, I didn't know who Aisha Tyler was before Friends.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Shawn Moore on July 10, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Was not sure what I was going to get when I ordered this book. I loved Aisha is Friends and the show Thirteen. She is amazingly funny woman who has über smart wit and yet potty mouthed. I sat up and read from e-cover to e-cover when I down loaded it. The stories are hilarious and she is so self deprecating you wonder how she is so successful, but then you here her truly honest and warm voice I each chapter. Makes me evaluate all of my own self inflicted wounds and think how they have shaped me or made me laugh in retrospect. Must read.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By F. H. Falk on August 9, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have listened to all of her podcasts and looked forward to this book.

The first half of the book was one story after another of her injuring or embarrassing herself. I stopped listening to the audiobook since, I get it, you did stupid things in the past. I finished it because it was there and I had to do something.

Once she started talking about college, how she got into comedy, and how she became an overnite sensation in only 10 years it was great.

A large part of her podcasts cover how people worked really hard to achieve where they are.
And Aisha, if you are reading this, sorry to hear about your broken arm and do not sleep with me.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Ian Howell Street on September 9, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am 3/4 through the book, so feel I have good sense of the style. I like a lot of the stories; some more than others (of course that'll always be the case). And I think the parts where she talks about what she learned from each 'self-inflicted wound' is the real heart of the book. And it's great stuff. Hustle, keep going, change what you're doing if what you're doing isn't working and many other good things.

So far, I've felt the style is amusing, but not exactly funny. In one chapter she lays out the laws of comedy; and perhaps I should have read the book while slightly tipsy (I did read it at night- another of the rules of comedy). And a book may not be the best venue for comedy. The descriptions often feel like a little too much some how. I can tell it's her, but it's kind of a diminished version of what you'd see if she was talking- as she does on her fantastic podcast or in her standup.

I am enjoying the book a lot and think she is using the stories in the book to illuminate some pretty great life lessons. Perhaps I'm dead inside, but I just wish I was laughing out loud more.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Elleiram on July 17, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is everything I love about Aisha Tyler.
As she commonly displays on her various TV jobs and especially in her podcast, Girl on Guy, Aisha is hilarious, incredibly smart, and fearlessly herself. Even when it ends in disaster, and this book shows you that oftentimes it did.

I don't know if she meant it as a motivational book, but it is one. Between the times you have to explain why you're having your own "snorting laugh" kind of self-inflicted episode, there's just so much that encourages people to keep going. So you fell on your face. So you set something on fire. So no sane person would EVER be seen there again after what YOU did...go back. Own up to it, face it, learn from it...and kick some ass.

Aisha proves that you can be silly, nerdy, strong, sensitive and hilarious all at once, and she's an inspiration even when she's not trying to be. This book is about the worst but ends up showing you the best.

I'm not going to make any apologies for the language she uses, because she doesn't, and if you miss the forest for the trees that's a sad thing for you. Read this book because we all love embarassing stories, because you want to laugh, because you have time to kill at the airport, and because you aren't afraid to snort when you laugh- or if you were before, you decided not to be after you read this. Then give it to a friend and watch them have fun with it. Then listen to her podcast. Then become one of us in the Girl on Guy Army, because we are legion, and she is awesome (and so is the book!)
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