Synopses & Reviews
In the summer of 1974, a fourteen-year-old girl in Dolton, Illinois, had a dream. A dream to become an actress, like her idols Ron Howard and Vicki Lawrence. But it was a long way from the South Side of Chicago to Hollywood, and it didn't help that she'd recently dropped out of the school play, The Ugly Duckling. Or that the Hollywood casting directors she wrote to replied that "professional training was a requirement."
But the funny thing is, it all came true. Through a series of happy accidents, Jane Lynch created an improbable--and hilarious--path to success. In those early years, despite her dreams, she was also consumed with anxiety, feeling out of place in both her body and her family. To deal with her worries about her sexuality, she escaped in positive ways--such as joining a high school chorus not unlike the one in Glee--but also found destructive outlets. She started drinking almost every night her freshman year of high school and developed a mean and judgmental streak that turned her into a real-life Sue Sylvester.
Then, at thirty-one, she started to get her life together. She was finally able to embrace her sexuality, come out to her parents, and quit drinking for good. Soon after, a Frosted Flakes commercial and a chance meeting in a coffee shop led to a role in the Christopher Guest movie Best in Show, which helped her get cast in The 40-Year-Old Virgin. Similar coincidences and chance meetings led to roles in movies starring Will Ferrell, Paul Rudd, and even Meryl Streep in 2009's Julie and Julia. Then, of course, came the two lucky accidents that truly changed her life. Getting lost in a hotel led to an introduction to her future wife, Lara. Then, a series she'd signed up for abruptly got canceled, making it possible for her to take the role of Sue Sylvester in Glee, which made her a megastar.
Today, Jane Lynch has finally found the contentment she thought she'd never have. Part comic memoir and part inspirational narrative, this is a book equally for the rabid Glee fan and for anyone who needs a new perspective on life, love, and success.
WITH A FOREWORD BY CAROL BURNETT
"A triumphant memoir recounting the inner struggles of one of the most versatile actresses working today....Achingly sad and sweetly comic at the same time." Kirkus
"[A] frank, engaging, and at times uproariously funny autobiography of a roller-coaster life." Vogue
You might know Jane Lynch as the cheerleading coach everyone loves to hate on Glee
, the intense lesbian dog-trainer in Best in Show
, or store manager offering to deflower Steve Carell in The 40-Year-Old Virgin
. But before that, she was just a teenager in Dolton, Illinois, with a dream to be an actress.
Here, Lynch looks back on her often-bumpy journey to success with humor and candor. All of her experiences — from moving back in with her parents at twenty-five to struggling with anxiety to selling flea collars on a home-shopping network — have made her, and her characters, stronger, wiser, and more hilarious.
Today, Lynch has found the contentment she never thought she'd have, finally embracing her sexuality, finding love, and accepting herself. Part comic memoir, part inspirational narrative, this is a book for Glee fans and anyone who needs a new perspective on life, love, and success.
About the Author
Jane Lynch grew up on the South Side of Chicago and currently lives in Los Angeles. She married Dr. Lara Embry in 2010, and was lucky enough to get two daughters in the deal.