I have published humor pieces in many different outlets over the years, including a number of them that no longer exist. There are few things more ephemeral than a humor magazine, and frankly most of what they publish is also doomed to be outdated and forgotten in short order, with some notable exceptions. Here you can find links to all of my humor writing that is still available online, if not always at the same place where it was originally published.
First up is my own literary humor site, The Big Jewel, founded in 2002 by myself and Neil Pasricha, and still going strong, though Neil left to do other things quite a while ago. Mostly I select and edit material by other writers for the site, with the help of five other editors, but occasionally I also contribute myself. The following link leads to every piece I have at The Big Jewel.
McSweeney’s Internet Tendency is the daily literary humor brainchild of Dave Eggers, founder of the McSweeney’s quarterly and author of A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius and many other worthy books. Over the years a number of my pieces have appeared at this site, which used to be edited by Dave himself and is currently under the able management of Christopher Monks, who has himself contributed to The Big Jewel. So you see we’re just one big happy, incestuous family in the literary humor world! Here is a link to all of my pieces at McSweeney’s Internet Tendency.
The rest of my online humor writing is scattered far and wide over a multitude of sites. I’ve also had a lot of material appear in the Onion, but that was all done as what they call “a work for hire,” which means that under the terms of our agreement I can neither take credit for nor repost links to the any of the material in question. The only places they give credit to writers are on their masthead, where I used to be but haven’t been for many years, and in their books, where you will often find my name among dozens of others. With the rather glaring exception of the Onion, then, what follows is the best of the rest.
Dream On (from The Talking Mirror)
Heads Up! (from Slate)
I Concede (from the now-defunct humor magazine Modern Humorist)
Letter of Recommendation (from the New Yorker, but they have a pay wall, so get it here)
A Look at This Year’s Halloween Candy Advisory (from Robot Butt)
United States Census 2000: Extra Long, Dumb, Paranoid Form (from Reason)
The Wimposium: A Socratic Dialogue (from the late, lamented Pindeldyboz)
After Barnes & Noble published my book Leave the Gun, Take the Cannoli: A Wiseguy’s Guide to the Workplace (a collection of gangster movie and television quotes applied to best business practices), the investment geniuses at the Motley Fool contacted me for my take on how today’s business moguls compare to characters from classic crime films.
If the Mafia Ran Berkshire and Amazon
One of the most useful web sites for writers is the Six Questions For… blog edited by Jim Harrington. Each week he interviews the editor of a different publication to find out exactly what they are looking for in submissions. One week he interviewed me.
Six Questions for Kurt Luchs, Co-Founder & Editor, The Big Jewel
The Luchs Brothers wrote five full-length radio plays that were never recorded or performed live: “Second Honeymoon,” “Dale and Billy,” “Dead Man Jones,” “Sealed for Your Protection (aka The Prison Story),” and “Dirk Scabbard — Home Front Hero.” This is the last of them, the final major work we ever completed, which was written by the dynamic duo of Kurt and Ernst, Helmut having departed to get married and start a family. The script combines parodies of three genres into one twisted story line — WWII propaganda, hard-boiled crime fiction, and apocalyptic science fiction in the vein of Orson Welles’ adaptation of “The War of the Worlds.” This was first published by the fine folks at TL;DR Magazine, an online outlet that specializes in the quirky, and more recently republished by The Charles Carter. While this is very much a comedy and a period piece, we hope the underlying theme of paranoia and its consequences remains relevant and lingers in the reader’s mind.
Dirk Scabbard — Home Front Hero