Writing Class Radio is for people who love true, personal stories and want to learn how to write their own stories. There's no better way to understand ourselves and each other than by writing and telling our stories. Everyone has a story. What's yours?
This episode is about writing humor. Andrea tells a joke only she thinks is funny, then calls our humor expert, Jay Wexler, who confirms just how funny her joke is. Jay is an attorney and the author of five books.
Later in the show, Jay shares his ten suggestions for writing humor. Andrea adds four. Together, they have 14 suggestions for writing humor.
Terry DeMeo introduces herself before telling a story in front of a live audience, at Lip Service. In her own words, Terry wonders about who she is. She’s a former lawyer and currently a life coach. Also a writer. The story Terry tells is about undying her hair, but you’ll realize as she realizes that the story is about much more than hair. She tells her story in front of a live audience in Miami. Andrea notes that while many of the audience members are over 40 years old, no one lets her hair go gray, except Andrea. Terry’s story is called Fifty Shades of Gray.
Jay Wexler’s 10 Humor Commandments (Plus Four):
1. Do not start with a joke.
2. Piggy back on the absurd hilarity of the world.
3. Use self-deprecation.
4. Stuck? Break into a non-prose element, like a chart or graph.
5. Write about bad or awkward sex.
6. Mine your pain and humiliation.
7. When in doubt--deadpan. Less is more.
8. Be brutal in your editing.
9. Don't feel funny? Get your ass out of the chair!
10. Add an animal.
11. State the obvious.
12. Use call-backs.
13. Land on the joke.
14. Create surprise.
After hearing Terry’s story, Andrea goes through Jay’s ten humor suggestions and shows how Terry used many of them successfully. You don’t have to be a clown to write humor, you just have to be willing to face your fear.
Writing Class Radio is a podcast where you’ll hear true personal stories and learn a little about how to write your own stories. Writing Class Radio is equal parts heart and art. By heart we mean the truth in a story. By art we mean the craft of writing. No matter what’s going on in our lives, writing class is where we tell the truth. It’s where we work out our shit, and figure out who we are.
There’s no place in the world like writing class and we want to bring you in.
Writing Class Radio is co-hosted by Allison Langer (www.allisonlanger.com) and Andrea Askowitz (www.andreaaskowitz.com). Writing Class Radio is produced by Diego Saldana-Rojas, Andrea Askowitz and Allison Langer.
Visit our musicians page to learn about the talented and generous people who allowed us to use their songs.
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