On this episode of Straight Up With Stassi, comedienne extraordinaire Rachael O’Brien joins Stassi to chat about writing processes, hecklers/haters, and ghosts (duh).
“Hell. Hell. Hell.”
“I’ve had a lot of people ask me about your writing process — when you write for comedy shows and all of your material — and then ask, ‘What are the differences?'” Stassi says. “We haven’t actually discussed this.”
“Between you writing a book and me writing comedy stuff?” Rachael asks. “Let’s talk about it.”
“I can explain what it’s like real fast for me: Hell. Hell. Hell. Knowing you have to write a book in a certain amount of time…” Stassi says.
“You had a deadline,” Rachael adds.
“It was one thing to be like, ‘Okay, I have an idea for a book.’ Then you’ve got to write a proposal. Hell. That’s hell,” Stassi says.
“I’ve heard that the proposal is almost harder than writing the book,” Rachael says.
“Um, I felt like it was,” Stassi says. “Luckily I had help.”
“Your listeners do know that you have a degree in English or creative writing or whatever, right?” Rachael asks.
“I have a Bachelors degree in English Writing from Loyola Marymount University,” Stassi explains.
“Yeah, so it’s not like you just haphazardly were like, ‘Oh, I’m going to write something,'” Rachael says.
“I don’t remember being taught the process of how to go about this,” Stassi says. “When you major in English in school, you’re just studying other people’s shit.”
“And I don’t think there is a way to teach a process, because everyone has their own process,” Rachael adds. “People ask me that all the time: ‘If I want to do it, what do I do?’ I’m like, ‘Well, here’s how I do it, but…'”
“It was terrifying.”
“Have you seen a ghost?” Stassi asks Rachael.
“You know I have!” Rachael says.
“I can’t remember,” Stassi admits.
“In London? Well, I didn’t see it, but I was… Are you literally not remembering what happened in London?” Rachael asks.
“Oh! When I was there! Yeah, that was traumatizing,” Stassi recalls.
“When it shook my bed?” Rachael adds.
“I’m just jealous and angry that everyone else gets these experiences and I forgot,” Stassi laughs. “So, let’s go over this story. It was two years ago. Me and Rachael were in London together at a gorgeous Airbnb. One of the best ones. We had our own rooms, it was high tech. It was underground. I was sleeping, and all of the sudden, you woke me up.”
“Also, it makes sense that something would happen in London, where there’s older history,” Rachael says. “We were pretty jet-lagged, but not messed up or anything. We had gone to bed, but I had a really hard time falling asleep, so I had been awake for a couple of hours. The crazy thing is, Chris Medina — a medium and a psychic — had just done my podcast. He had talked about how when he was little and in adulthood, a lot of the ghosts that would come to him, it was accompanied by a scampering sound, and he would also just hear that a lot. So that kind of got in my head. So I’m laying in bed, and I had opened the window. It was down below, but we had a courtyard somehow. I heard a scampering across the ground, and I was like, ‘Shit, there was no screen on it, an animal is in the room right now, fuck.’ Within a second — and it’s not like the thing was on top of the bed, it was in between the mattress and the bed frame — the ghost had taken the mattress and started rumpling it like a wave. To the point where my body was like, ‘Uh! Holy shit!’ It was terrifying. Then I got up, woke you up, and then I think you watched some period piece for hours.”