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Comedy: March 22, 2023 Issue [#11843]

 This week: Crafting Laughter: Comedy Do's & Don'ts
  Edited by: Writing.Com Support
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Table of Contents

1. About this Newsletter
2. A Word from our Sponsor
3. Letter from the Editor
4. Editor's Picks
5. A Word from Writing.Com
6. Ask & Answer
7. Removal instructions

About This Newsletter

If you're a writer looking to add some humor to your stories and novels, our guide to writing comedy is just what you need. Our do's and don'ts of comedy writing will help you master the art of laughter, from developing comedic characters to using timing and pacing to your advantage. We'll also show you how to make fun of yourself without coming across as too negative or insecure, and how to avoid using stereotypes or cliches to get a cheap laugh. With our guide, you'll be able to add humor to your writing in a way that's fresh, original, and most importantly, funny. So get ready to make your readers laugh out loud (or at least chuckle quietly to themselves)!

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Letter from the editor

Dear aspiring comedy writers,

Are you ready to take your stories and novels from snooze-fests to laugh-fests? Or are you tired of your readers confusing your attempts at humor with medical emergencies? Fear not, we've got some do's and don'ts of comedy writing that will turn your readers into laughing hyenas (or at least get them to crack a smile).

*BurstG* DO start with a relatable premise. Nothing gets readers laughing like a relatable story. Think about what makes your readers chuckle in their everyday life and build your humor around that. Because let's face it, who doesn't love a good fart joke?

*BurstR* DON'T rely on cheap laughs. Avoid easy targets and jokes that make you cringe. Writing comedy is about finding humor in everyday situations without being offensive or hurtful. That means no fat-shaming or "yo momma" jokes (unless your mom is really cool with it).

*BurstG* DO develop comedic characters. Create characters that your readers will fall in love with because of their funny quirks, tics, or catchphrases. Just make sure their humor is consistent with their personality, so your shy librarian character isn't suddenly dropping F-bombs left and right (unless it's a really funny twist).

*BurstR* DON'T overuse stereotypes. Avoid using stereotypes or harmful cliches as a shortcut to get laughs. Stereotypes can often fall flat or come across as insensitive, and the last thing you want is for your readers to cringe instead of laugh. Unless, of course, you're writing a book about the world's worst stand-up comedian.

*BurstG* DO use timing and pacing. Comedy writing is all about timing and pacing. Use short sentences, punchlines, and pauses to create a comedic rhythm. Just don't make your pauses so long that your readers start checking their email.

*BurstR* DON'T force humor. Nothing is less funny than jokes that feel forced. Let the humor come naturally from your story or characters. Unless, of course, you're writing a book about a robot that's trying to learn how to be funny. In that case, force away!

*BurstG* DO use incongruity. Incongruity is the unexpected twist that makes people laugh. Use it to subvert reader's expectations and create humor. Just don't make your twists so insane that your readers start questioning your sanity.

*BurstR* DON'T forget to edit. Just like any other aspect of writing, editing is key to making your comedy work. Edit ruthlessly, and cut anything that doesn't land. That means no more jokes about your ex, no matter how funny they seem after a bottle of wine.

*BurstG* DO make fun of yourself. Self-deprecating humor can be a great way to endear yourself to your readers. Just make sure you're not coming across as too negative or insecure. Unless, of course, you're still writing that book about the world's worst stand-up comedian.

*BurstR* DON'T be too uptight. Humor is all about having fun. You don't need to be so serious about yourself or your writing. Loosen up and enjoy the process! After all, nothing is more hilarious than a writer who takes themselves too seriously.

We hope these do's and don'ts of comedy writing in stories and novels have been helpful, or at the very least, made you giggle. Remember, comedy is all about finding the funny in everyday life and making your readers laugh.

So go forth, writers, and let the humor flow!

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