Fey appears on the cover of Rolling Stone's "What's Funny Now" issue alongside Chris Rock and David Letterman. "I knew I wanted to be funny around seventh or eighth grade," says Fey. "Mostly I wanted attention, and being funny was the most possible way for me to get it." The issue also features nine other comedians, including Fey's 30 Rock costar Tracy Morgan, frequent collaborator Amy Poehler, and Sarah Silverman.
30 Rock is nominated for a record 17 Emmys–the most for any comedy show in history–and Fey brings home three Emmys–for Best Writing, Lead Actress and Best Comedy Series. While accepting her acting prize, Fey credits a fellow nominee: "Sometimes when I don't know how to play a scene, my husband will say, 'Just try to act like Julia Louis-Dreyfus.' So, thanks, Julia, that's really working out for me." Fey is again recognized at the Golden Globes, where she takes home a trophy for best comedic TV actress and best TV comedy series for 30 Rock.
Fey appears on her second Vanity Fair cover, where she reveals that she got the scar on the left side of her face when a stranger violently cut her cheek at age 5. But she worked hard to keep it from affecting her childhood. "I was a very confident little kid," she says, "It's really almost like I'm kind of able to forget about it, until I was on-camera." In September, 30 Rock wins another Emmy for outstanding comedy series.
Fey joins forces with The Office's Steve Carell for the comedy caper Date Night – which opens No. 2 at the box office. "It was totally fun. It was like adventure camp," Fey told EW of playing a married couple whose night out goes haywire. "You're like, 'I think I'm in a movie!' It was pretty badass."
Fey makes her literary debut with a collection of comedic essays, Bossypants. "I thought for a minute about calling the book Having It All: Love, Work, Jaw Pain, she told InStyle of the hilarious memoir, which includes classic "Tina-isms" and the writer-actress's unique brand of self-deprecation and wit. "The great Miz Fey puts on the literary equivalent of a satisfying night of sketch comedy," lauds EW.
Fey, 41, makes her 5-year-old daughter Alice a big sister when she welcomes a second daughter, Penelope Athena Richmond, with husband Jeff Richmond. The key to working motherhood, says Fey is "a lot of help, and you need not to be afraid to ask for help."
Teaming up with frequent collaborator Amy Poehler, Fey serves as cohost for the Golden Globe Awards, poking fun at Avatar director James Cameron, James Franco and Taylor Swift, among others. "Because it's such a fun kind of sloppy night, it's not really about the host giving any kind of big comedy performance," she says prior to the show. "It's our job to keep things moving and also try to get the movie stars more liquored-up so that hopefully someone's boob will fall out of a dress."
BIOGRAPHY (top to bottom): Trae Patton/NBCU; Myles Aronowitz/AP; Swarbrick/Donnelly/INF; Paul Drinkwater/Getty