From butt-chugging and fratire to using baby cries to torture prisoners of war, my conversation with Tucker Max started out as exciting as his personality would lead you to expect. It’s a roller coaster of awesomeness on multiple levels.
Before I left Tennessee to move to Lexington (Tucker’s home town), I had a buddy request that I read Tucker’s book “I Hope They Serve Beer In Hell.” I did, and I praised Tucker’s ridiculous humor and shenanigans along with the rest of the world. Never did I think I’d be chatting with him four years later.
Despite the media and world perception of Tucker being a face-down pants-down raging alcoholic hellion with no respect for anything beyond bitches, hos, and blackout bonanzas, he is quite the opposite.
Most people say he’s “grown up,” but I think it’s way beyond a simple label. The dude was fucking brilliant when he released his books, and he knew exactly the effect his stories would have on the world. He knew how to make people laugh and intrigue them beyond belief. He mastered the game of publishing, selling and creating a revolutionary money-making brand.
He didn’t do this by chance.
He’s a brilliant author and entrepreneur with a drive for constant personal development and success. He always has been.
I took this episode as an opportunity to diagnose how Tucker handled his transition from college frat boy superhero to happily married father and CEO of the brilliant Book in a Box- a hands free service to turn your ideas into a published book.
I think Tucker made like $20k in the amount of time we chatted.
I also learned that I was a much heavier drinker than him in the past :X
That being said, here is his press bio if you are interested in his credentials:
Tucker Max received his BA from the University of Chicago in 1998, and his JD from Duke Law School in 2001. He even attended Duke Law School on an academic scholarship, where he neglected to buy any of his textbooks for his final two years and spent part of one semester–while still enrolled in classes–living in Cancun.
His first book, I Hope They Serve Beer In Hell, is a #1 New York Times Best Seller, spent five years on the list, and has over 2 million copies in print. His second book, Assholes Finish First, and his third book, Hilarity Ensues, are also NY Times Best Sellers. He co-wrote and produced the movie based on his life/book, also titled “I Hope They Serve Beer In Hell.” He has also been credited with being the originator and leader of a new literary genre, “fratire,” is only the third writer (after Malcolm Gladwell and Michael Lewis) to ever have three books on the NY Times Nonfiction Best Seller List at one time, and was nominated to the Time Magazine 100 Most Influential List in 2009. He currently lives in Austin, Texas.
To defeat Godzilla with his talents…
- “He is a lizard, right? Why don’t you just use ice? I mean, he must be like any other reptile. I will wait until it is night time and dump ice on him.”
- Alcohol tastes good in the mouth, I don’t need to pour it in my butt.
- If you ever want to torture someone, try “baby crying” noises.
- 15:15: Tucker vehemently denies that he drinks more than me but admits to having demons like everyone else. Listen to him reminisce about his way of dealing with personal demons and how he came to the realization that achieving financial success does not equate to personal happiness. Tucker, being Tucker, says he compares coming to that realization to a near-death experience with a caveat to be careful with near deaths because you might just get the death experience without the “near” part of it.
- 22:22: “I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell,” Tucker’s first book was an eye-opener except that it took him more than a decade to open his eyes to the real need to have an authoritative how-to- turn-ideas-into-a-book-without-actually-having-to-write-one. He comes up with fascinating insights on the difficulties of being a writer. Listen to how a colleague ropes Tucker into this project by pointing out the preposterous absurdity of his raison d’etre. This was the birth of Book in a Box and the amazing unfolding of this project to its eventual ground swell to some sort of writer’s bible is narrated by Tucker in his irreverent but nonetheless sincere awe for how his process actually answers a real need.
- 30:05: Listen to how Book in a Box is packaged. This is bigger than itself. It is an awesome project with a complete set of services from concept to interview to outline to actual writing by someone else, to book form to publishing. Listen to Tucker get serious about how he amazes even himself with the success of this project.
- 39:00: Despite Tucker’s success with Book in a Box, he wants to expand his mission and talks about his future plans. Listen to him give his no holds barred opinions of certain books that made it to the New York Bestseller List too.