Comedy

Who doesn’t like a laugh?  Comedy writing is like stories where the characters end up in situations that would make the reader feel bad for them. Except the unfortunate characters have gotten themselves into a situation that sets the mood as ridiculous and funny.  However, comedy writing can be tricky because unlike stand up comedy (comedy on the stage), a reader isn’t going to know when to read slowly or quickly or where to pause.  In addition, the story can get boring if their aren’t enough jokes and you don’t want to make it to sad of a situation that the reader ends up feeling bad for the character instead of laughing at the character.  The biggest challenge in comedy writing is figuring out if the parts of the story the writer finds funny are as funny to the reader.

Make the jokes flow along with the story

Something that comedy writers tend to do is put in a joke just for the sake of it, or just so that there are enough jokes in the story to make it comedy. This will ruin the story. It is almost asking in the middle on a dialogue: “Why did the chicken cross the road?” Not a good idea. You want to make sure that the joke is at least mildly related to the plot. What you also want to do is have the characters say it, not the narrator.

One thing: do NOT explain the joke

If you present a joke, and then explain how it works, the fun of the joke will vanish. You might be thinking: Oh! But what if the reader doesn’t understand the joke or what I’m trying to say? It’s ok. If the reader doesn’t understand it, they probably won’t even notice the joke, or skip over it. That way, for someone who does understand the joke, it will remain funny.