Thursday, April 9, 2015

H is for Humor

In my life I use the funny. Some have said to me that I'm always "ON". I don't know if this is true, but I can't imagine writing without humor. Most of my favorite moments in books or movies are the comic relief between the big and hard scenes. Clever use of humor makes you more accessible and helps to cement your bond with readers. It is also one of the big factors that decide if I will bother with a second book from an author.

One of the best ways to coax a smile from someone is to be specific. A million years ago, in debate class we had to present our arguments as an animal. It was silly and one of the most engaging classes that teacher taught. I was assigned to be a squirrel, which is humorous, but lots of others had that task. I decided to present in the persona of an irate French squirrel. This was highly effective and became a running joke for years. I believe the specifics made it easier to visualize and thus funnier.

Another thing to consider when injecting humor into writing is that people often find the unexpected hilarious. I don't like to be thrown too far out in left field, but if you have something heading one way and you can take a believable hairpin turn you will often find yourself landing in a humdinger of a sweet spot.

A question I was worried about is what do you poke fun at without hitting a nerve. Your answer is all around you, the mundane. So many situations in life are side-splitting because we've all been there and it was a little awkward. Watching our heroes squirm is always fun.

One of the best topics for your comical fire is yourself. Be the joke you see in other places. If you present your joke as something internalized people can choose if it applies to them or not. This is especially helpful when you are skirting trickier subjects. Stand-up comedians use this technique often.

What do you guys think? To joke or not to joke? Are some stories too dark or serous to have a place for humor? Don't forge to leave a comment with a link if you can and let me know where you're from so I can follow you back.

Photos from Pixabay.


  1. Replies
    1. Yes, glad to have you in the funny side.

  2. I am definitely in for Humour. It truly binds us together and lightens our burdens too :)
    Co-Host AJ's wHooligan for the A to Z Challenge 2015

    1. Yes and we could all use a little lighter burdens