Laughing with Lucy

Laughing with Lucy


My Life with America’s Leading Lady of Comedy

Lucille Ball’s staff writer Madelyn Pugh Davis and her long-time writing partner, Bob Carroll Jr, share priceless moments behind the scenes with Lucy and Desi Arnaz.

Read the heartwarming and hilarious stories behind I Love Lucy, as told by Lucille Ball’s staff writer.

I love Lucy. You love Lucy. We all love Lucy. At any time, day or night, I Love Lucy is on TV somewhere in the world—which means that, 24 hours a day, Lucille Ball is speaking the words that Madelyn Pugh Davis wrote.

As Lucille Ball’s staff writer for nearly 50 years—spanning I Love Lucy, The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour, The Lucy Show, Here’s Lucy, and Life with Lucy—Madelyn was responsible for thousands of hours of classic TV. Many of the story elements used on the shows were, in fact, taken from Madelyn’s own life and immortalized by Ball’s comic genius. (Mertz, for example, was the last name of her real-life neighbors.)

Madelyn and her long-time writing partner, Bob Carroll Jr., share with you their priceless moments in crafting the stories for Lucy, Desi, and cast. In Laughing with Lucy, you’ll learn about

  • the scramble to address Ball’s real-life pregnancy on the show without using the “p” word
  • behind-the-scenes, painstaking work to create “spontaneous” jokes
  • how, whenever an elaborate physical comedy gag was devised, Madelyn had to act it out first to be sure that a woman could perform it
  • Madelyn’s and Bob’s fond memories of the partnership between Lucille Ball, the consummate perfectionist, and Desi Arnaz, the charmer

In Laughing with Lucy, Madelyn looks back with wit and affection on her many years working with Lucy, Desi, and other entertainment legends, and the adventures that came her way as a television pioneer.

Additional information

Weight 12.5 oz
Dimensions 5.5 × 8.5 in

Madelyn Pugh Davis


Bob Carroll, Jr.



Page Count:


Illustration Notes

B&W photos throughout

Publication Date



Clerisy Press


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