Laura Barnes has interviewed me for a post about my experiences with social networking. The post appeared on Saturday, and can be found HERE. I've been given a nifty Savvy Sensation Award, along with it. Thanks, Laura!
Humor is a great thing to have in a novel. It can lighten an otherwise overly dreary book, brighten a dark one (like, morbid humor, anyone?) or add slapstick to a zany plotline.
But writing it is often harder than it seems it should be. Humor is SO subjective. What tickles one person's funny bones leaves another one scratching his or her head. My funny bone is rather easy to stimulate when I'm reading. I'm easily amused, even by something as subtle as phrasing or wording.
As far as writing goes, I remember one contemporary novel I finished, thinking I had included humorous situations in there. My hubbs read it and said, "Hey, I know what you could do to improve this story--add some humor into it." *headsmack* Other readers had found parts of it amusing; it was a more subtle kind of humor I guess. Just goes to show--subjective, subjective, subjective! LOL
EXAMPLES OF HUMOR
1. Slapstick-like humor in the MG novel SAVVY by Ingrid Law:
Lill chose that moment to try to turn on the television, wanting to check the weather. We all turned to her with a sudden shout of "DON'T!" that nearly made that poor woman sprout wings and fly. Fish stood up so fast he knocked his plate of waffles facedown onto the floor. (page 235, paperback edition)
2. Weasley-type humor in HARRY POTTER & THE DEATHLY HALLOWS:
"When I get married," said Fred, tugging at the collar of his own robes, "I won't be bothering with any of this nonsense. You can all wear what you like, and I'll put a full Body-Bind Curse on Mum until it's over." (page 138, hardback edition)
3. Down-home humor in the MG series HANK THE COWDOG by John Erickson:
[Hank's talking about another dog who's sleeping in his spot]
He didn't want to move so I went to sterner measures, put some fangs on him. That moved him out, and he didn't show no signs of lameness either. I have an idea that where Drover is lamest is between his ears. (page 4, book #1 in the series)
Humor Contest: an experiment
At the beginning of this month ex-agent extraordinaire Nathan Bransford held a 350-word humor contest. Seriously, if you have time, read through some of these entries. Some I thought not funny at all, others hilarious. Probably the ones YOU will think are funny will be completely different from the ones I did! Very interesting.
The contest entries--all 242--HERE.
People voted for their faves of the 3 Finalists HERE
The Winner HERE.
Do you have a short humorous excerpt to share from a novel or your own work?
Do you use humor in your own writings--or do you avoid it since it's so subjective?
When reading, do you find that the more you know about a novel's situation or characters, the funnier you find certain scenes?