So firstly, I want to extend my thanks to Michael O'Brien for taking the time out of his super-busy schedule to do this interview and responding with such detailed and insightful answers. He went far and beyond what I expected and I'm enormously grateful. Let's all give a hand for Michael!
You can visit Michael on the interweb here and check out his videos/upcoming gigs etc.
You can also check out his comedy shorts at almostpimps.com
Now, without further ado, I present the Michael Patrick O'Brien Q&A. (Rest of answers after the jump!)
2. Two part question - a) You were a performer for many years with Second City and iO - how did you come to be hired as a writer for SNL?
b) A lot of readers were curious about your writing packet - if you submitted one, what it consisted of, how many sketches there were etc. Could you talk a little about that?
a- Lorne Michaels, Seth Meyers, and a group of producers and writers from SNL came out and watched me do showcases at iO and shows at Second City over the years. I was flown out to NYC to do a 5-minute audition at SNL in both 2005 and 2009. The latter resulted in this writing job.
b - I did submit a writing packet. Several over the years, actually. I don't remember what they consisted of, but I'm sure they had 4-5 sketches in them that I thought could be used on the show. I would take the pieces that had been working best in my two person sketch shows with Peter Grosz (our show was called "Misled"), solo show pieces, and Second City scenes and adjust a part here or there to make them work on paper and not just in performance.