Who Joan Rivers Most Likes to Ridicule

Sara Haines and Mary-Rose Abraham
July 2, 2014

It's not every book which opens with a disclaimer that readers take nothing in it seriously. Diary of a Mad Diva is trademark Joan Rivers -- skewering celebrities, public figures and most especially, the comedian herself. Yet Rivers says the caution didn't stop actress Kristen Stewart from wanting the book pulled for a crude reference to Stewart's affair with a married movie director.

"Did anyone read to her that it's a joke?" Rivers wondered. "I am looking forward to going to court with Kristen Stewart."

If that actually happens, Rivers is likely to be the only party gleefully anticipating her day in court. But it's all in a day's work for the longtime actress, comedian and author – this is her 12th book – who at 81 has a full schedule which includes hosting Fashion Police and her Web series In Bed With Joan, comedy tours, and designing and selling her own jewelry line and accessories on QVC. So what would happen if she eased up a bit?

"I would kill myself," Rivers said. "All I wanted ever was this business. Ever."

Earlier in her career, Rivers found success with her own daytime talk show, a role as Johnny Carson's permanent guest host on The Tonight Show, and later, her own late-night talk show. But a very challenging period followed when her TV show and Las Vegas gigs were cancelled, and her husband of more than 20 years committed suicide.

"I think you get through everything by laughing," Rivers explained. "That's the way I deal with everything ... I do jokes."

She continued: "Somebody told me that every laugh is like a small vacation," Rivers said. "Isn't that great? Love that. Every time you laugh it's like giving someone a small vacation."

Watch the videos above to see Joan Rivers talk about her favorite people to make fun of, why women comedians aren't late-night TV hosts, and the celebrity she wants daughter Melissa to marry.

ABC News' Brian Fudge contributed to this episode.