His name is Tucker Max, and he is an asshole.
The man whose stories are too terrible for your mother’s eyes, yet too hilarious for her not to love, has recently published his third and final book in a trilogy of tales that have caused protests, lawsuits and spawned a new generation of literature dubbed ‘fratire’ over the past six years. Judging by the content of his first two bestsellers (I Hope They Serve Beer In Hell and Assholes Finish First), you may be as surprised as I was to hear that not only was Mr. Max still alive after his many (mis)adventures, but he was also still able to write … and write well.
I haven’t come across books as entertaining as the Tucker Max series since Goosebumps first hit shelves when I was barely getting hooked on phonics.
While the stories in his latest effort, Hilarity Ensues, keep their traditional tone of sloppy, sexy, drunken insanity, somehow it seems like we’ve never heard them before. Each experience is chronicled in detail down to the dialogue, creating a unique environment that replaces the reader’s dull reality with a non-fictional world of awesome.
Though some stories may be a bit embellished, Tucker Max is anything but. He is just as much of a pretentious dick as you would hope for, even referring to himself as ‘an artist’ at one point during our conversation.
But in truth, he is. Even if his art may not be exactly the type that Mom would want hanging on her wall.
I go to UCSB out in Southern California, and it’s safe to say we have some of the most beautiful women in the country. Have you noticed any differences between partying with California girls and your post-grad crowd of Duke girls?
Well, Southern California people are very different people. Southern California, man I have a whole story about L.A. girls in my second book and how much I fucking hated them and how absolutely fucking awful they were as human beings. So yeah, there’s definitely a difference there.
You’re a self-proclaimed asshole. When and how did that realization come about?
I use the word asshole to designate … not really the conventional meaning but more like, you know, I’m not gonna take shit from people. I’m gonna do the stuff I want to do; I’m not gonna be a pussy, basically. A lot of people take ‘asshole’ to mean other stuff, which is fine, because I don’t really care what people say, as long as they say something. When I first wrote that line on my website, “My name is Tucker Max, and I am an asshole,” it was sort of a joke and a way to get attention, and then it became a catchphrase so I said, “Fuck it,” and kept it.
So what are we going to see in Hilarity Ensues that we haven’t already read in your other books?
They’re gonna keep people reading because they’re just as funny as the other books. It’s pretty simple — either a story is funny or it’s not. I mean, there might be some people who read for shock value; I don’t know why you would do that. There’s nothing in my book that hasn’t been on PornHub for the last 20 years. It’s not about shock value — it’s about being entertaining. The stories are mostly about entertainment. The goal is to make people laugh. There are some underlying messages, but you don’t have to get them to like the books. That wasn’t my goal. My goal was to write something that would make people laugh.
When you first started writing the books, did you go out with the purpose of wanting to get fucked up enough to have a cool story the next day?
Dude, you know how it works. If you try and do something, it doesn’t work. You gotta just go out and have fun and let it happen. If it happens, it happens; if it doesn’t, it doesn’t. If you try and force it, then it never really works.
The only other dickhead semi-alcoholic that I can think of in this world is Mike the Situation … how does he compare to Tucker Max?
He’s a reality star. Those people don’t do anything. The job of a reality star is to act like an idiot that everyone else can make fun of. That’s their job. That’s all they do. I’m a writer. I have multiple number-one bestsellers; I’m an artist. It’s totally different. If MTV decides to cut the Situation off of “Jersey Shore” it’s not like he goes and gets another job as an actor or something … he’s just done. Who else wants to see this fucking clown? If he’s not a Jersey idiot making fun of himself, he’s nothing, whereas a writer can write about a lot of different things … His only skill is fucking embarrassing himself.
Rosanne, Snooki, Casey Anthony. Kill one, marry one, sleep with one. Go.
I’d probably kill Casey Anthony because God knows if I don’t kill that bitch, she’ll kill me, you know? She’s a murderer, so I might as well get her out of the way. I would definitely marry Rosanne, because she’s the smartest of the three. Like, she’s actually really smart. She’s crazy, fat and ugly, but she’s really smart, so if I’m gonna have to spend my life with a woman then I’d rather have it be a smart woman. Which I guess leaves Snooki, which is fucking awful. So it better be kill, marry, fuck and get drunk because I’m not putting my dick in Snooki unless I’m pretty drunk.
You know she lost a lot of weight, right?
Dude, you could take all the fat you want off a pig and it’s still a pig.
When you go out now, do you go out with the same friends as you did in your stories?
Well, a lot of my friends have kids so they don’t go out much anymore.
Do you see yourself having kids at any point?
Oh yeah. Yeah. I have to get a wife first; that’s a pretty important part of the deal.
So … no kids without being married?
I hope not. I don’t wanna just be poppin’ out babies with some skank I barely know. There’s a whole story in the second book about how many abortions I’ve had to pay for.
How would you react if your kids started traveling down the same path that you did?
If my son is like me and wants to do the things I did, I’m not gonna stop him. I’ll try and have him do them in maybe a smarter or more productive way than I did. Sometimes I was a little out of control, but … that’s the only way you can realize what you like and what you want and what you should be doing is by trying lots of stuff and seeing what works.
You’ve gotten a fair amount of backlash for the types of scenarios you write about in your books…
I don’t pay attention to that shit. It’s not from people I know or care about so why would I give a shit? I don’t give a shit what some anonymous idiot I don’t know thinks about something they don’t know about. Who cares? It doesn’t even occur to me that I should care. I love what I do, and I have a great time, so why would I not do it?
You say this is your third and final book, but what’s next? Will you still be living the same way you did in these stories?
The worst shit that’s happened in my life, the craziest shit, is all in my books.
My stories are about all the stupid drunk stuff I did in my 20s and I’m not in my 20s anymore, so … no more writing about it. If I have something to write about, I will. Right now my life is pretty average and boring, to be honest. I’m about as famous as I’m gonna get just from writing books. I’m on TMZ every now and then, but there’s a limit to how famous you can be as a writer. No writer is ever gonna be as famous as like The Rock or Dr. Dre or Jay-Z or something. There’s definitely things on the agenda; this guy — an A-list movie star — is doing an autobiography and he wants me to co-write it with him, so I’m gonna do that. That’s the cool thing about making a lot of money; I don’t have to decide exactly what I want to do. I got more than enough cash.
Hilarity Ensues is available at bookstores nationwide. All Tucker Max books are available at his website, www.tuckermax.com, along with a free digital download of Sloppy Seconds.