We Saw Scenery: The Early Diaries of Merrill Markoe

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Product Details

Algonquin Books
Publish Date
6.2 X 8.0 X 0.8 inches | 1.2 pounds

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About the Author

Merrill Markoe was the head writer for the original The David Letterman Show (the live NBC morning show that was recognized with a Daytime Emmy Award) and the co-creator and first head writer of NBC's groundbreaking Late Night with David Letterman, for which she won three additional Emmy Awards. She engineered the majority of the show's original concepts and created the segments "Stupid Pet Tricks," "Stupid Human Tricks," and "Viewer Mail." Markoe also won a Writer's Guild award for her writing/performing work on HBO's Not Necessarily the News. She has written for television shows such as Sex and the City, Newhart, and Moonlighting and has written for many periodicals, including Rolling Stone, Time, US Weekly, People, Esquire, The New York Times, and The Los Angeles Times, and her cartoon work has appeared in The New Yorker. She was recently awarded the Paddy Chayevsky Laurel Award for Television Writing Achievement.


"In We Saw Scenery, you'll learn that you weren't the only one who would learn, painfully, that sarcasm--via Mad Magazine--was not the best tool for seduction. You'll find out you weren't the only person who'd buy tickets for a hip event--and then want to leave early. It's gratifying to see teenage Merrill grow her armor--a subversive attitude--that will see her through, despite everything, and you just want to cheer her on. Merrill Markoe's visual and written analyses of her childhood diaries are acute, devastating, and hilarious. You should buy this book!"
--Mimi Pond, author of The Customer is Always Wrong

"Everything Merrill Markoe writes is a must-read, but We Saw Scenery is particularly essential, because besides being a hilarious, poignant and perceptive portrait of a comedy writer as a young woman, it showcases an overlooked facet of one of our most important artistic voices. Markoe has always been singularly gifted at finding oddball, deadpan humor in the idiosyncrasies of language, but what's less well known is her background as an artist. This delightful graphic memoir, rooted in her early diaries, pairs whimsical, evocative drawings with her razor sharp prose. It's an absolutely delightful marriage."
--Jason Zinoman, author of Letterman: The Last Giant of Late Night

"Merrill Markoe got all the talent. In addition to being an Emmy-award winning comedy writer, she's also a top-notch artist. We Saw Scenery is revealing, sad, funny, and, above all, relatable. Merrill captures the experience of a young woman finding--and holding onto--her own voice. And we're all lucky she did."
--Nell Scovell, author of Just the Funny Parts