Hi, I'm Ray Evans. I'm a certified copyeditor and proofreader.
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4 Tips to Add Humor to Your Writing
First step is acceptance
While you might not have been the class clown in school, everyone has the potential to be funny. Find a voice for your humor—maybe your primary character.
Comedy writing consists of little narratives that climax with a punchline. If you properly create a narrative and pay it off, the audience will laugh at the punchline. Be thoughtful and deliberate and don't try to add too many jokes.
Know Your Audience
Humor is very subjective. A joke that works for one audience may not work for another. What works for a middle-class Jewish audience may not be funny to lower-income Black audience or to a group 20-something frat boys. Always be clear on who your readership is and be sure that your jokes and humor are something that they can relate to.
Use the element of surprise
Good comedy is unpredictable.
Mix ideas. The rule of three—a bit with three beats—is a common pattern in comedic writing. The first two build a pattern of comparable ideas. The punchline breaks the pattern with an unexpected statement.
Here's an example from the stand-up comedian, Larry the Cable guy
"I had a buddy call me up that he had just slept with his third cousin. And I'm like, Man, if it upsets you that much then stop countin' them."
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