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Carol  Leifer

Carol Leifer

Award-Winning Comedy Writer 


A trailblazing female in the world of stand-up comedy, Carol Leifer is a sought-after comedy writer and producer, a four-time Emmy nominee who has written for such shows as Seinfeld, Saturday Night Live, The Larry Sanders Show, and the Emmy Award-winning Modern Family, for which she won a 2012 Writers Guild Award. Read More >

Carol has written for the Academy Awards seven times, the most of any female writer. She has written for the Emmy Awards three times along with The Tony Awards, for which she received a 2016 Writer's Guild Award nomination.

Discovered by David Letterman, who happened to catch her show at "The Comic Strip" in NYC, Carol went on to appear on Late Night with David Letterman a record 27 times. Carol has also made several appearances on HBO's Real Time with Bill Maher, Fresh Air with Terry Gross on NPR, NBC's Today Show, ABC's The View, Watch What Happens Live on Bravo and The Howard Stern Show.

In her engaging keynote and stand-up presentations, Leifer draws on her natural gifts as a storyteller to weave an interconnected tale that touches on such topics as her Jewish upbringing, her experiences as a woman the male-dominated entertainment industry, and her coming out as a lesbian at the age of 40. A proud women's rights advocate, she supports a woman's right to choose (whether it's making health choices, career choices, or personal choices), making her a natural and often requested choice for women's organizations, corporate audiences, and healthcare agencies.

Leifer also shares her unique perspective on life in 2009's acclaimed bestseller When You Lie About Your Age, the Terrorists Win, a memoir that served as a catalyst for her to share some of her most personal stories, including her coming out, her decision to adopt children with her partner, and her breast cancer scare. In this book as well as in her presentations, she reveals what it was like for her to finally find—and embrace—her "authentic self" and encourages audiences to do the same with her trademark wit and wisdom.

In April of 2014, Leifer released her second book, bestseller How to Succeed in Business Without Really Crying. This hilarious collection of essays charts her extraordinary three-decade journey through show business, illuminating her many triumphs and some missteps along the way—and offering valuable lessons for women and men in any profession. The New York Times (6/1/14) raved and called it "An unusual and endearing mix of showbiz memoir and self-help book." Read Less ^

Speaker Videos

A Glimpse of Carol Leifer

Speaking Out for Choice

Speaking Reel

Writing for the Oscars

Speech Topics

How to Succeed in Business Without Really Crying

Based on her April 2014 bestseller, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Crying, Carol Leifer discusses her extraordinary three-decade journey through show business, illuminating her many triumphs and some missteps along the way. In a presentation that is a perfect blend of comedy and mentorship, Leifer offers valuable lessons and shares her secrets for success with her witty and hilarious how-to guide for everyone: College graduates just breaking into the job market, women who find themselves frustrated by the “glass ceiling” and for anybody who wants a bigger and better career now. Using priceless insight, she provides audiences with tips and tricks for getting ahead, finding your way and opening locked doors.

Comedy Workshop with Carol Leifer

Have you dreamed of becoming a comedy writer, either as a hobby or a profession? Do you think your company, organization, or students could benefit from an infusion of humor in presentations and seminars? Read More >

Then four-time Emmy nominee and best-selling author Carol Leifer is perfect for your group! Book her now for her critically acclaimed writer’s workshop.

You will learn:

  • The basics of joke writing and personal essay writing from the woman who’s written for Billy Crystal, Ellen DeGeneres, Chris Rock, Steve Martin, Alec Baldwin, and Whoopi Goldberg
  • What makes a funny idea for an episode of a sitcom
  • The behind-the-scenes stories of triumph and tragedy from the woman who’s written for Seinfeld, Saturday Night Live, and Modern Family
  • Never-before-shared secrets of breaking into the business
  • The art of “pitching” your comedy ideas—in work and everyday life

You’ll even have the chance to get up on stage and read your joke or personal essay in front of Carol Leifer for on-the-spot encouragement and direction. By bringing simple exercises to her workshops, Leifer unleashes the funny power that lies in everyone! Read Less ^

When You Lie About Your Age, the Terrorists Win: Reflections on Looking in the Mirror

Coming Out: The Guts, the Glory, the Grief

Life on an Everything Bagel: Wisdom & Thoughts on Life from Seinfeld Writer Carol Leifer

How to Handle Everything with the Key Ingredient of Humor

Life, Work & Staying Sane: How Women Find Balance in Today's Chaos

Laughter Really Is the Best Medicine: How Humor Makes You Healthier, Reduces Stress & Helps You Be a Peak Performer