Mindy Kaling Is Writing a New Book Called Why Not Me?
In a live chat with the Los Angeles Times on Wednesday, Mindy Kaling revealed that she’s working on a second book that will be called Why Not Me?
The title “has kind of been my subconscious motto my whole life,” Kaling said in the L.A. Times interview. “So much has happened between the time I published my first book and now… the show, my mother passed away, so many of my friends have gotten married. I’m a godmother now, and a homeowner. There’s so much that has happened in that period of time that I wanted to write another book.”
Kaling’s first book, Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns), was published in 2011 to great reviews. But since then, the Cambridge native’s career has catapulted to new heights. Just think: in 2011, we still had The Office! Today, Kaling is arguably the Office alum who has done the best job of distancing herself from her Office character. Rather than associating Kaling with the ridiculous Kelly Kapoor, many TV viewers now think of her as Dr. Mindy Lahiri on her show, The Mindy Project.
In fact, while hanging out with other funny ladies in The Hollywood Reporter’s Comedy Actress Roundtable, Kaling lamented with her contemporaries about people thinking that she and her character are the same:
When I originally wrote the character, she was not named Mindy. But Kevin Reilly said—before he picked up the show—”I think her name should just be Mindy,” and I was like, “OK, yeah.” But the character has also lost several handguns and says stuff like, “I think recycling makes America look poor.” Then pieces get written about me that say, “Mindy Kaling is a Republican,” because they can’t separate the two. But no one ever thought [why] Alec Baldwin’s character on 30 Rock said things like that. I think it’s sexist, that there’s no way that I could write a character who’s so different from me. Why would I want to do my own show and be a cool, liberal Westside person who lives in Brentwood? Let me live that life and let the character be wild.
While Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? included stories about when Kaling was growing up in the Boston area—highlights include the story behind the title, when she sees her friends hanging out without her at The Cheesecake Factory—Why Not Me? will cover topics from more recent years. She said during the live chat:
What’s great about a book is… there’s no way to construe it differently. You can answer questions that people ask about things like the writers’ room, or race on the show, my Elle cover, body image stuff that people have questions about. I can actually finally say, in the most eloquent way, what my feelings were about it.