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Conveying humor in writing?:

Wannabe Comedian
I generally take pride in being a funny person. But whenever I try showing my classmates scripts and skits that I wrote, they don't laugh. They just say "Oh, it's good", then walk off. I'm sure that this can be attributed to either poor writing, or the fact that I'm not really funny, and they've just been humoring me.

I'll just get straight to the point: What are some good ways to convey humor in writing?
if I had enough money, I would donate a bunch of coloring books to the blind.
 2 Mr AHR, Sat, 24th Mar '12 7:32:03 AM from ಠ_ಠ Relationship Status: A cockroach, nothing can kill it.
Ahr river
I have the same problem, mostly because I tend to write rather obscure looking punchlines. For instance, I once write a scene that is just one giant hitler joke, but if you don't know that his original surname was "shicklegrüber" you'd have no way of know that.

Honestly? Humor is wide ranging and it's VERY hard to get the right niche people for something like that.

If you want to convey humor well, put a lot in it, that way some of it will be noticed. Or have in-universe humor (for example, Malfoy being turned into a ferret)

edited 24th Mar '12 7:33:02 AM by MrAHR

 3 JHM, Sat, 24th Mar '12 7:36:00 AM from Neither Here Nor There Relationship Status: I know
Thunder, Perfect Mind
Certain types of humour work well in person but translate poorly to prose; other types have the opposite quality. Slapstick, for example, is very hard to write unless it is properly translated into a more print-friendly form of humour; on the other hand, ironic humour is less laugh-out-loud funny off the page than on.

In other words, there is no one route, but the basic idea is that you write to your medium.

Also, skits are supposed to be funny in performance; how they scan, assuming that they are well-written, is ultimately irrelevant to that end.

edited 24th Mar '12 7:37:54 AM by JHM

 4 Mr AHR, Sat, 24th Mar '12 7:39:26 AM from ಠ_ಠ Relationship Status: A cockroach, nothing can kill it.
Ahr river
Also, lots of humor that rely on tone. Snarking, for example, works best with timing, something text suffers a lot from.
 5 Nightwire, Sat, 24th Mar '12 9:18:27 AM Relationship Status: Showing feelings of an almost human nature
Paperclip Curator
[up]I think prose can do snarking really well. Just read authors like P.G.Wodehouse and Terry Pratchett

edited 24th Mar '12 9:19:10 AM by Nightwire

You see, I used to be an awkward nerd just like you, then I became Electro.
 6 Mr AHR, Sat, 24th Mar '12 9:18:55 AM from ಠ_ಠ Relationship Status: A cockroach, nothing can kill it.
Ahr river
It can do, but in a different way.
 7 Nightwire, Sat, 24th Mar '12 9:25:34 AM Relationship Status: Showing feelings of an almost human nature
Paperclip Curator
One word to the OP: Humor is not something that can be forced. An author's wit should come and flow organically and sincerely. Do not try too hard to be witty if you're not. Just spend more effort work on your scenes, dialogues and characterization. If you're a naturally funny person, your unique sense of humor will come through.
You see, I used to be an awkward nerd just like you, then I became Electro.
Rainbows hurt.
I think I have the same problem, Mr AHR. Some of my jokes just fly over a lot of people's heads.

To the OP, humor is so subjective so whether you write the BESS JOKE IN TEH WURLD!!! LOL!!1!, there's no guarantee that everyone will think it's funny. Just keep your style, and don't try force funny into it.
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Easily entertained
It's better to have characters underreact to jokes than overreact, unless there's an explicit reason to overreact — say, they're really stressed and have to laugh to stop from crying, or they're the joke-teller's brown-nosing toady.

edited 24th Mar '12 10:17:29 AM by KillerClowns

 10 Mr AHR, Sat, 24th Mar '12 10:15:14 AM from ಠ_ಠ Relationship Status: A cockroach, nothing can kill it.
Ahr river
Which sucks, because I have made groups of people convulse on the floor in laughter, all over a stupid joke, just because I had the proper timing on my side. WHICH YOU CAN'T DO IN WRITING.
 11 JHM, Sat, 24th Mar '12 10:47:02 AM from Neither Here Nor There Relationship Status: I know
Thunder, Perfect Mind
[up] Yes, you can. It's just really hard to pull off.
 12 Mr AHR, Sat, 24th Mar '12 10:48:21 AM from ಠ_ಠ Relationship Status: A cockroach, nothing can kill it.
Ahr river
Well, you can, but not with the same jokes.
Forum Villain
Humor IS difficult to convey in writing. It's easiest to do if you have a really dry wit naturally and are capable of Deadpan Snarking in real life. Take, for instance, Neal Stephenson. His series, The Baroque Cycle, demonstrates that exceptionally well, primarily through borderline-absurdist, dry descriptions.
"Sarchasm: The gulf between the author of sarcastic wit and the person that doesn't get it."
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Total posts: 13
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