Be a Real Writer: Meet Tony D

Christy A. Schmidt
Manual Focus
Published in
8 min readJun 30, 2022


Headshot courtesy of Tony DiGerolamo.

You want to be a writer.

So… write.

Like me, I bet you hold a romanticized idea about what a professional writer is. Society has this vision that the only writers are New York Times best-seller personalities, like Neil Gaiman, Stephen King, or J. K. Rowling. But most writers (85%) are drafting copy for toothpaste ads, helping businesses with social media posts, drafting business materials or contracts, creating textbooks, working journalists, or crafting the words spoken by a talking head.

Like writing jokes for delivery by famous people like Bill Maher.

For this month’s Artist Spotlight, let me introduce you to my new hero, Tony DiGerolamo, “Tony D.”

Why my hero?

As a budding writer, I’m getting to know — really know — the industry. Those we know as “authors” are such a small percentage of the army of writers the world over. Consider Tony. You’ve probably not heard his name, but you know his work. This New Jersey screenwriter, novelist, comic book writer, game designer, and comedian is the genius behind familiar work like: The Simpsons, the Bart Simpson comic books, and Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher (joke writer). His writing career fills his Wikipedia and IMDb pages.


Tony calls himself the weirdo who makes books and comics. His publishing company, South Jersey Rebellion Publications, is the home for his Jersey Devil Comics. He releases four videos each day on his social media channels. Two on YouTube; two others on either Odysee or Rumble.

He’s on book nine of his Piney’s series.

He dotes on his Bichon-Maltese, Joan of Arc, and he would love to be cancelled.

“Look at Dave Chappelle. I’d love to be cancelled. It would draw attention to my books.”


After earning a Communication degree (TV, Radio and Scriptwriting) from Ithaca College, Tony made his way to Hollywood where he wrote comedy and tried to sell his screen plays.

“I left after three months. LA is not the place to just show up and get anywhere. I knew I’d have to build a career and then return as the guy who does this.” He adds: “Those people in



Christy A. Schmidt
Manual Focus

Author, photographer, professor, attorney, life coach, yoga enthusiast. Insomniac. See more at: or