It’s not a joke. No, really. It’s more an art.
Making ’em laugh, that is.
I’ve just finished reading a hilarious novella – the sort where you find yourself laughing out loud on the bus! It’s called Being Miss, by Fran Hill.
Although I am talking about short stories in my blog, I think Fran’s book has a lot to teach us about the art of writing comedy.
Fran’s plot can be summed up as ‘a day in the life of a secondary school teacher’. All sorts of horrifying and hilarious situations occur, and I was riveted.
What is it that makes a humorous story like Fran’s work so well?
A main character we like immensely; one we can identify with; a human being who is far from perfect, but one we would like if we met her.
Secondary characters with whom we can identify. We’ve met some very similar ones in our own lives.
A plot which takes us through the protagonist’s problems as if they are our own, and we know we’ll come out the other side smiling.
MORE ABOUT FRAN HILL
Being Miss, Fran’s ebook book, is available from Amazon, from FeedARead, or directly from the author.
You can find Fran’s blog Being Me at ilurveenglish.blogspot.com/
WHY NOT TRY IT YOURSELF. WRITE YOUR OWN HUMOROUS STORY
Your workplace. What could go wrong? Give your main character a problem. What could this character do to put things right? What if things go from bad to worse? How will you solve the dilemma?
WARNING: Don’t use identifiable people in your story – they’ll very likely recognise themselves, and probably never speak to you again.
When you’ve written your story, leave it for a day or two, then read it aloud.
How can you make it better? Does anything read badly?
Take it along to your writing group, or ask a buddy to read it. Ask for their honest opinion, and appear to listen, even if you disagree violently with what they say! True buddies are trying to help you.
Then find a competition to enter. Who knows what might happen next?
Frog: (No longer smiling)
Look here. This has gone beyond a joke. HEEEEEEEELP!