“Friends” Writer: Recalls Working on Show Wasn’t a Dream Job

“Friends” Creator Remembers How Difficult It Was to Work on the Show.

Former TV writer Patty Lin claims that although working on “Friends” will “remain my most recognizable credit,” it doesn’t mean she enjoyed her time there.

She was unable to refuse when given the opportunity to writer for “Friends”. From 2000 to 2001, she worked on Season 7 of the show.

In her new memoir, “End Credits: How I Broke Up with Hollywood,” Lin claims that after a decade of writing for television, she quit her job in the entertainment industry in 2008, having written the screenplays for “Freaks and Geeks,” “Desperate Housewives,” and “Breaking Bad.”

In a Time extract from her book, Lin writes, “My disillusionment [with the industry] had begun at my very first writing job but was momentarily staved off by a positive experience at ‘Freaks and Geeks’.”

She claims that she was thrilled to meet the cast, which included Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, and Jennifer Aniston.


According to Lin, “the novelty of seeing Big Stars up close wore off fast, along with my zeal about breakfast,” and “the actors seemed unhappy to be chained to a tired old show when they could be branching out, and I felt like they were constantly wondering how every given script would specifically serve them.”

If the cast didn’t enjoy a joke, according to Lin, they would “deliberately tank it, knowing we’d rewrite it.”

Dozens of funny jokes would be rejected just because one participant slurred the punchline while chewing bacon, the author argues.

The group would then gather in Monica and Chandler’s apartment to talk about the play. The actors used their first opportunity to speak up loudly, and they did so,” she continues. They hardly ever said anything encouraging, and when they did, they failed to offer workable alternatives. They frequently asserted that they would never say or do something because they saw themselves as the protectors of their personas.

Although this was occasionally beneficial, these sessions generally lacked the humor you’d anticipate from the creation of a comedy.

The crew was divided into groups, and Lin also mentions that her days were twelve hours long. She experienced imposter syndrome because, “as the only Asian writer,” she questioned whether her hiring was motivated by diversity.

Lin adds, “I later realized that imposter syndrome is a common experience for ethnic minorities working in professions where they lack representation.

Lin concludes, “I didn’t learn that much, other than the fact that I never wanted to work on a sitcom once more. However, the decision had seemed obvious at the moment. For better or worse, Friends would continue to be my most well-known accomplishment.

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