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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Hey, I’m funny…I really am!

My sisters call me a laugh whore—because I laugh at everything. I’m currently laughing as I write this :)

My husband says I’m not as funny as I think I am. Whatever :) He’s crazy, I am funny. But—am I a funny writer? Are you a funny writer? How important is humor in your genre?

I write YA adventure/romance. It isn’t inherently funny, but I think humor is a great way to ease the inevitable tension of the story. Laughing releases endorphins, and causes euphoria. Won't euphoria make readers better connect to my story? Here is how I add humor:

Funny Characters: Lighthearted funny characters are important. They give readers an emotional break. Can you imagine the literary world without Ron Wesley or Mr. Collins? I’ve have a funny character who often gets drunk and spouts secrets and inappropriate comments :)

Funny dialogue: You know that delicious witty back and forth between Elizabeth B. and Mr. Darcy? Can you write that kind of dialogue? I’m not terribly witty, but I can write funny sarcastic dialogue. I tend to use sarcasim more than wit—I guess I’m just low brow.

Funny situations: I hope my crit partner Sara will forgive me for sharing this :) She has the most hilarious situation in her WIP that makes me laugh every time I read it. Her MC has car trouble and a boy she has a crush on stops to help her, but she is wearing her PJ’s—and not cute PJ’s but horrid faded holey old ones. Oh, the fantastically funny humiliation.

So what about it—are you a funny writer? Does it come easily to you? Or do you feel it doesn’t have a place in your WIP?

-Angie

18 comments:

Deana said...

I happen to think I'm a hoot too, but I don't know if others think the same thing.
I like to write semi-dark and add humor into it. Is that weird?

Angie Cothran said...

Deana-I think you are very funny, and I love to read your posts. I also think adding humor to semi-dark helps to balance it :)

Chantele Sedgwick said...

I think I'm hilarious as well. ;) My hubby just rolls his eyes most of the time though! Ha! He loves me. ;)

And I love adding humor to my books. Everything is so serious these days. I have to get my laugh on somehow. Great post! :D

Mel Fowler said...

I can't believe they call you a laugh whore.... I think its funny though.

I used to be more funny, when I am around certain people I am more funny. I wish I was more funny, I wish I could write funny stuff... I need to work on it.

Mel Fowler said...

HA I just have to share, my word verification just barely was "wheeni" I dont know why but it's funny.

Oh, and I just used more funny alot just barely, Sorry!

Angie Cothran said...

Chantele - Husbands never seem to appreciate great girl humor, but what can you do?

Mel - Oooo "wheeni" is a great word. I think "more funny" is pretty hilarious. You are funnier than you think :)

Small Town Shelly Brown said...

Angie most people love hanging around the laugh whore. She makes them feel good about themselves. So thanks :) Laugh all you want, it just raises the general self-esteem.

Husbands are supposed to say things like that. And then we are supposed to say, they're crazy (that part made me laugh out loud- really, look I spelled it out!)

There isn't much humor in my WIP. There is but for a comedian I would think I would have jammed in more, but I didn't. It reads kinda straight.

But my next project that is waiting in the wings is SUPER silly.

Angie Cothran said...

Shelly - You are hilarious I have a hard time believing that your WIP isn't funny. I guess it is hard to be so funny all the time :)

Tara Tyler said...

i crack myself up. but i think i need a beta reader to know for sure!

E.R. King said...

Angie, if you make yourself laugh, that's all that matters. I have a wry sense of humor. But I love to laugh. Keep on laughing, even if you're the only one!

Sara Bulla said...

I'm honored to be featured. I just re-wrote the final scene of the TB and I kept asking myself, is this even funny??? I hope so! I think you're funny too...Breck is a perfect example of that!

Angie Cothran said...

Tara - I'm sure you will crack up many beta readers :)

Emily - I can't stop laughing even if I want to, and if I'm the only one I just laugh harder.

Sara - Can't wait to reread the end. I'm sure is very funny :) I'm glad you think Breck is funny too.

Abby said...

This is great, and it's all good if you're a laugh whore! That's funny :) I think funny characters are a great source of humor especially if you write a more serious genre. Your character sounds great. I like a funny character, or witty banter or sarcasm. Even funny situations. Somehow you've got to throw it in there to living things up and help the reader connect.

Angie Cothran said...

Abby - You are right humor does help us connect in a way we couldn't otherwise.

Katrina L. Lantz said...

Yes! I love humor while I'm reading. I kind of suck at it as a writer, but I'm working on it. I think reading other writers who do it well (like my CP, Michelle McLean who does the humiliation thing to her MCs just perfectly) is helping me see how I can infuse my own books with more humor.

And kind of like Elizabeth Bennett, I find human foibles funny, so a pious person or an arrogant person can easily make me chuckle. Also character clashes, where one person is a wall flower and the other is an attention whore. Lots of great humor comes out of conflict (think Scabbers and Crookshanks).

Awesome post, Angie! And I love your smile/laugh. It's one of the things that made me spot you as a kindred spirit at that conference.

Kelley said...

We are totally on the same page (and how cute is this blog?). When I set out to write Glittering Ashes, I thought it was going to be a really dark, eerie YA, but then I started writing it, and when I wrote the character Jordyn, I couldn't help but be goofy. She was the best to write because of it. It does ease tension. <3 a new follower :)

Angie Cothran said...

Katrina - You are sweet :) A kindred spirit for sure!

Kelley - Welcome :) Goofy is great--awesome in fact.

Juliana L. Brandt said...

Oh man, I always think I'm funny and then have to stop and tell my bf that I was making a joke, so I'm not sure how funny I actually am. Lol. I'm crossing my fingers I have some humor in my book!

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