Most of the things I write about are true happenings. The audience does not feel threatened by the comedian who gets his message across in a funny way. My Mom kinda laughed her way through Cancer of the Lymph nodes and we were right there with her laughing it up and cracking jokes with the medical staff. Great work! Thanks for writing this Rochelle. The entire hub landed in my head when my defenses and the dreaded Writers Block  were zero. applies to the subject I’m writing about. And analyzing it DOES scare off the Muse. Thanks again for your fine article. But that leaves you vulnerable. "funny" like "beauty" is in the eye of the beholder . I've found it way too complex and subtle. I also don't call my writing "humor." 5. How to Write Satire Hack: Read a Lot! When I forwarded a piece I had written to a friend, he emailed me back saying, "I see you are still trying to be funny." This … Read some of my humor hubs-- you decide. I'm not a psychologist. . As you said, it loses it's surprise and you start second-guessing yourself. Daddy spoke up and said, "call her Mammy." Rochelle Frank (author) from California Gold Country on June 17, 2008: Preschool is a great place to find humor. Humor is based on truth, literalness, humility, objectivity, possibility and sometimes impossibility. Good job! The most important thing to remember, though, is simply this: I will read your article again and after deep thought I will reove my rubber nose and hula skirt and add my thoughts. I'm often the first one to start cracking up. It's then his turn to be taken by surprise :), PS: I don't have the answer to your question what makes something funny, I guess, as I find to be said rather often, 'you had to be there' :). Funny Version: I guess it would be a little different if you are writing something funny or physically saying (or performing something funny). Avoid taking more than 1 or 2 sentences to make something “funny.” Deal with it. Or write a single joke. Expaining the basic objective facts of either is not usually sexy or funnny. You even made my son laugh with your additions to the canine attributes list and he is a tough audience to crack. Humorous dialogue, funny plot lines and silly scenarios add creativity and interest to literary works. how hard can that be?". Another reason is that I hesitate to call my written offerings "humor", I usually call them "silliness". If you’ve got a knack for telling funny stories, when looking for ways on how to make money writing, humor writing is one great way to make money as a freelancer. Yes, I’m a huge proponent of FIRST creating a great piece of content, and humor is a little bonus add-on, but not the main show. I respect your perspective. Rochelle Frank (author) from California Gold Country on April 05, 2012: Andyes, thank you for your comment. )Thanks so much for your comments! Like the aircon with two legs walking out the open door or the gate ringing the doorbell upon its arrival. Humor is in there somewhere. You presented great information about the qualities that define humor while at the same time you can be very funny. My mother told me years ago, that an author could bestow on his Character any attribute that he/she did not have .. .except for that of being funny. However, "The Editor's" question challenged me as a teacher, and I began giving it some thought. I need more coffee. Rochelle Frank wrote humorous bits for her college newspaper many years ago. For example, consider what the parody news anchors like Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert and Keith Olbermann get away with. Gonna bookmark this one. So I added a few items to the list which are also absolute Truth: When she got my list, she said her husband came in her workroom to see what she was laughing at. Why: I learned over the years that drugs have destroyed many relationships and families, and is generally not a pleasant joking matter for many people. I'd say something that I was completely serious about and people started laughing. When we are surprised, when our beliefs are countered, when we are told we are wrong about something, or when our ways of thinking are challenged, there is an element of threat. Here’s some quick examples you can reference when showing people how to write funny. And it does seem if you analyze it too much you might lose it. I do however, have an occasional 'shining' moment when I get him back as good as he gives. Neither should be allowed into the wrong hands. Let me start over.... Rochelle Frank (author) from California Gold Country on January 10, 2010: Thank you, htjh, I would be interested in seeing the results of your research. Had I known this stuff earlier on, I would probably be quite rich by now. Glad to be a follower your blog, Thanks Ky, I try to mix advice with humor best I can :). There must be a capable sender and a capable reciever. 2012 = Year of the Dove Trial-Sized Chocolate Bar He was a fine fellow - old, wrinkled, and full of beans - even though he was as ill as a person can be and without a dollar in his pocket. Hey Nev, I think really funny people are just fabulous observers - they shut up now and then and see how strange and wonderful the world is and then it just comes out of them - my kids are like that! Very useful article.Humor is my passion too. THANKS!! Of course, not everyone is adept at being funny—particularly in writing. Now don't go and overthink, you already have it... and pay no attention to the man behind the curtain. [View Article], Why it’s good: Instead of simply saying “We’re giving away some T-shirts” this email added in some quick-and-punchy humor with the Four Loko reference. Great post as always! Her name was "Rich." I have made some observations though: I find humor liberating. [View Article], Why it’s good: Talking about churn in a SaaS business is hella boring. Thanks for your comments. I think honest stories about things that happen in one’s life (like the kind of comedy Jerry Seinfeld does), can be very funny because life tends to be full of many unintended punchlines. Thanks for the laughs. Use this Pun Generator if you need help coming up with something punny! I will be looking for your funny stuff. If you have seen my latest hub you may see some humour in that experience which more in keeping with my style. The answer is A B C A B A C A B A A A B B....DAMN! Rochelle Frank (author) from California Gold Country on March 09, 2012: Evaporation is always a worry. I really appreciate the way which you look at this field of study, it offer me a new way of looking at it now. . Well-done sir. AppSumo livened it up by making a pun out of the song “Turn Down For What!” Hilarious! BHAHAHAHAHHAHAHA “Cul-de-sac on my head!”. A humor essay isn’t a long uninterrupted stream of jokes. To this day, even if we haven't spoken for a while, he'll give me a call, and the witty comments come flying my way. Perceiving someone else to be smarter than yourself can be threatening, but if that person is not hostile, or pompous, or mean spirited, it still goes back to the tickle effect. As for the disturbed "funny people"-- troubled people can be found in any category or group. I will test-drive the pun generator and see if it’ll help me get pole position with my audience. Times were changing and it was no longer cool to use something like that as an insult. You’re in the right place if you want to write comedy. Rochelle Frank (author) from California Gold Country on June 14, 2012: I like your analogy to music, and it brings to mind the fact that not everyone will appreciate humor, no matter how clever it might be. Brands will use Twitter to showcase their sassiest selves. I hope you understand. It reassures me to hear someone saying what I think is right. Sex is sexy, humor is funny. Sometimes it helps us break out of a set way of thinking, and sometimes it just lightens our mood-- which might be the same thing, come to think of it. You cannot justify giving your parent, or child, or friend or lover a black eye to retaliate for a tickle attack. As a fan of Dave Berry, I was always amazed that he could do it time after time. To write good humor and satire, feed your eyeballs a diet of good humor and satire. I love the adage. There are all kind of people out there some find tom and Jerry to be funny and some find BORAT or Ali G to be funny. All of these things are absolute truth. This can mean if you’re sending a GREAT email to 100,000 people, you might get 100 people mad about SOMETHING for no real reason. Some see that side of me, although some don't. To employ this technique, write two items that set up a straightforward pattern, then add a third element that derails the initial idea. :). If I *hadn't* been at death's door, I would've tweaked it for days, then *maybe* published it, maybe not. Lots of men and women who crack up their friends and co-workers are incapable of writing funny dialogue. So far I have only been able to come up with this verb conjugation. Etc etc – It’s so absurd, but he never acknowledges that it *should* be funny, which makes it funnier. I think something to consider, also, when writing humor is randomosity. I still think analysis doesn't quite capture the underlying spirit. When people see (or hear about) others in pain, especially non-disabling pain, there are a set of reactions: One is "that was really stupid," but we know it's not nice to think that way so there is guilt (threat). Go figure. !” (Many international readers won’t understand the Spanish reference). . Sincerely, I happily accepted her judgment. I have no credentials in psychology or even humorology to back up my theories. I believe that "timing" is a very important element in humor (or in what constitutes funny). The unusual, exaggerated, incongruous, or unexpected thing is mildly threatening and uncomfortable. . I also think you are seriously funny, you still have a way to go. Personally, I don't find either sarcasm or hurtful 'humor' to be appealing. but it still has some of the same elements, including surprise and the annoying realization that someone else thought of it before you did. Humor is what I like best. Comedy writing is hard, and requires a special sort of skill set. For example, I’m a GenX Male transitioning into the 2nd half of life so referring Yeesh. Stand-up comedians write and perform jokes in front of an audience. Write funny comparisons. Best place to read funny stuff and practice being funny — the last page of every single New Yorker issue. Thanks for this hub, Rochelle. We are helpless, frustrated, and confused in such a way that we react with laughter to release the tension. The story of the Emperor's New Clothes has always been a favorite of mine, because everyone is suddenly exposed to the to the truth about the emperor (and about their own self doubts and fears) by a child who sees nothing wrong about telling it like it is. That was a very level-headed and constructive criticism I got many years ago, and and took it to heart. You tackled defining humor, which to me, is a feat in itself. I am always fascinated about the different types of humour. Will immediately go wash my hands with only Glad products :). .not the author. So, I … 5 Hilarious Strategies for Humor Writing. Re-imagine things as being totally ridiculous. Thanks for it. I´ll read it every time I forget how simple humor can be and how seriously it can be write. I know a very funny guy who frequently comes up with funny quips and comments, but he has a heck of a time remembering a funny joke he has heard-- seems like he always leaves something important out. Can't be taught. . But I believe that humor and what is funny comes from the way we see things; our perspective on life. I've heard someone before state that there is a "humour gene" and that only about 8% of people have it. How to Write Funny provides advice, insights and humor from more than twenty writers with a gift for making readers laugh.. Avoid taking more than 1 or 2 sentences to make something “funny.”. "I don't know how to put these up," she said "I have dioramas." The secretary advised her to take Pepto-bismol. He was very funny. I've been researching on social networking. This means we can slap in some funny burns. . I do add a humor tag to my hubs, though. Rochelle Frank (author) from California Gold Country on June 10, 2008: Nothing magic about this-- just my thoughts and personal observations. For additional email writing tips (funny and otherwise), check out our guide, Awesome Email Copywriting: A How to (With Examples). That’s not what this article is about. The things I find funny tend to be tied in with the choice of words. Certainly there is more to it than I put forth here, but I still think I got some of the basics right. Why: Obviously joking about things such as cancer brings up some pretty negative emotions for a large enough amount of people. I enjoyed it! Of course he has an advantage over me by having two live-in teenagers to provide inspiration. If the victim over-reacts or under-reacts to the pratfall, it is threatening (incongruous). As you can imagine, in my mind it quickly loses the element of surprise. ChrisLincoln from Orange (or Lemon...) 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