WASHINGTON – Sen. Al Franken plans to pen a “psychological thriller” about what it was like to have a life in comedy and then work hard to get to the nation’s capital to try to be productive — only to be met with gridlock and dysfunction.
Franken, D-Minn., who has written five other satirical books, has secured high-profile D.C.-based attorney Bob Barnett to help him shop the idea to publishers.
Once he gets a deal, he plans to start writing, Barnett confirmed late Thursday.
Barnett has represented almost two dozen other senators who have written books, including Republican presidential candidate Marco Rubio, the late Sen. Ted Kennedy and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y.
The book will draw on Franken’s six years in office and some of the funny, bizarre and nonsensical moments commonly taking place in the U.S. Senate, Barnett said.
“Sen. Franken decided to write the book now because he feels that we’re at a difficult moment in our country, politically speaking,” said a Franken aide. “He hopes that the book will be entertaining and fun, but he also hopes that it will help people understand the challenges that we face and inspire people to keep working.”
Franken’s other books are not exactly the ouevre of the standard U.S. senator.
His first book, “I’m Good Enough, I’m Smart Enough and Doggone It, People Like Me,” was based on the character on “Saturday Night Live,” Stuart Smalley, that made Franken famous. It is meant to be a satirical meditation book based on Smalley’s character, who was constantly seeking self-affirmation.
He then went on to write “Rush Limbaugh Is a Big Fat Idiot” — a title that was often brought up when Franken ran for Senate the first time as proof of his insincerity and blatant partisanism. It is critical of many of the prominent conservative voices in the 1990s, including Pat Buchanan and Phil Gramm.
Franken then wrote “Why Not Me?,” “Oh The Things I Know,” and “Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them,” and he wrote the forword to a book called “Still More Bushisms.” In 2005 he wrote “The Truth (with jokes),” four years before he was sworn in as a senator. That last book was about former President George W. Bush defeating now-Secretary of State John Kerry in a campaign of “fear, smear and queers.”
Barnett said he didn’t have a time frame for this next book’s release.
This is the second piece of book news this year for Minnesota’s senators. Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., released “The Senator Next Door” in August.