Saturday Night Rejection
Guest Post from Keith Alberstadt.
This season of “Saturday Night Live” ended a couple of weeks ago. Back in August, after a written submission tryout, I was asked to be a freelance writer for Weekend Update. Given that it was an election year and that I was turned down in ’07, I was thrilled beyond words. I even called my old English professor and told him to suck it.
It was a blast to do–the SNL thing, not telling off the professor, although that was fun too even if it was the wrong number and I made an old woman cry.
Here’s how it worked…Every week there was a show, I would turn in ten jokes (that was the limit) based on current events. But (sigh) they used not a single one of mine the whole year. The whole damn year! It was so demoralizing, I honestly felt a bit nervous and ashamed when asking Lorne Michaels for an invitation to the end of the year after-party.
I hear 100% rejection is actually par for the course for freelancers, so I’m not too bummed about it. Furthermore, I heard from a comic who works at SNL that a few of my gems actually made the first couple of cuts to reach the “Alt List” a few times before finally being shown to the trash. So I almost reached my goal. That makes me feel like the LeBron James of comedy writing. If I keep that up, someday people might say that I write jokes better than Michael Jordan.
There are seriously no hard feelings toward SNL. I will of course try out again this summer. In the meantime, I have to apologize to Old Woman Erma in Nashville.